Amalie Berlin on Doctors!

We have author Amalie Berlin visiting today.
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Amalie's latest release is UNCOVERING HER SECRETS and she has an autographed paper copy for one commenter! She's also running a raffle until 4-28-14 at
The Hospital for Doctor’s Who Got C’s

True story time! (And how initial spark can in no way resemble the final product.)

I hurt myself a lot. I’m totally graceful, like a gazelle and whatever?(Shut up, I am too!) But the problem is Gravity Hates Me.

I could fall down, while standing still, in a perfect walking environment, on a dry, sunny, breezeless day.

When I lived in Nashville, I had a particularly bad fall that resulted in a sprain so bad that the orthopedist I saw for 9 months after that(UNTIL HIS RETIREMENT…) winced when he saw it.

This was a seasoned vet of a gazillion years of sprains and breaks.

Not like the orthopedist I saw when I went to the ER right after the fall.

That guy was pretty new at his job. I think he might have been out of residency for five minutes. Young. Not experienced. I only knew he was a bone doctor because he had a 4 inch plastic femur on a chain around his neck. That’s right, he wore fake-bone bling. He also diagnosed the sprain. And then he whipped out a splint for my ankle, but he had no idea how to use it!

I knew how to use it. I’d seen them before. I’d worn them before. Aircast. It is two plastic hard bits with a bubble and foam inside so it can cradle your ankle and support it at the sides. You put one side of the splint against the outside of your calf, there’s a flat cloth bit for where it goes under your foot, and then you put the other side of the splint on the other side of your calf, and then it’s all wrapped up in Velcro bands to keep it in place. Very simple number. Like this:

That’s not the way he put it on me though.

He had me point my toe lie a ballerina, then lay one side of the cast on top of my foot/leg, and the part that was supposed to go under the heel? Over the toes. And the bottom of the cast was on the bottom of my foot. So it made a crazy V shape, and he wrapped the Velcro around that.

It got nowhere near my ankle. Then he gave me crutches to help with the matter. And I stood up and demonstrated to him that it wasn’t right. That position would have me dragging one leg behind me like a lame dog… but he said it was right, and left. I sat back down. A nurse came to discharge me… took one look at the cast configuration.

Nurse: Who put that on you?

Me: Bone doctor with four-inch femur on his necklace.

Nurse: *Eyeroll* I’LL FIX IT. (And she did, bless her long-suffering heart.)

When I tell that story(Which I do, if for no other reason than to point out how freaking awesome nurses are.), I always refer to that hospital as the Hospital for Doctor’s Who Got C’s. And that phrase was the spark that started the brainstorm that became Uncovering Her Secrets.

Only when I fleshed out a story, which was about a young administrator who had to try and reform her crappy hospital but she couldn’t afford any good surgeons except for the brilliant one that Had MOUTH-CONTROL ISSUES…  My editor loved the bit about the brilliant bad boy surgeon, but didn’t love the bit about the hospital being crap… so I refocused on the characters and it became a much different story(still featuring the bad boy brilliant surgeon who can’t control his sarcasm, FYI…)

Question: What kind of flaws are a deal breaker for your romance reading? Is a sarcastic hero too much to stand? Can your heroine be seriously flawed(but working on it!), or does that put you off?


“No, I don’t know. Explain it, Hardin. I’m difficult?” There it was. Anger. Dampened, kept from burning hot right now, but still present.

God, those eyes. Ice blue they may be but she could swear there were tiny flames dancing in his pupils. Never mind that tone… “I’m trying to be tactful, Preston.”

“Yes, I can see that. One thing I always appreciated about you was your directness. Spit it out.”

“Fine. Everyone expects you to be an ass.” Dasha stuffed her hands into her pockets. New-and-Improved Dasha didn’t do that because cultured people didn’t do that. It was an old habit. Old Dasha did this. She yanked her hands back out and forced them to relax at her sides. “St. Vincent’s has a close-knit community. The board likes it that way, the department heads make certain everyone works and plays well together. Staff, administration and physicians, we’re all people and, no matter what, conflict needs to be handled civilly.” God help her if he brought up how badly she’d worked and played with him. Dasha plowed forward like the thought never occurred to her.

“The board wants good reports about good behavior—that means you can’t just speak your mind. Other people can, but other people aren’t as sharp-tongued as you are. You cannot pick fights with people. And if you have it in you after all those long exhausting hours of not fighting with anyone, maybe you could work a few of the miracle procedures that makes the board willing to take the risk.”

“Why are you willing?” Those eyes followed her every movement.

Willing might be overstating that. “Dr. Saunders and I are both willing to—”

“That’s not what I asked,” Preston cut in. “I get why he’s willing. Why are you willing? What does it get you?”

A clean conscience? Cleaner…

The peace of knowing she’d righted a terrible mistake? Or tried to…

There was no gently working up to subjects with this man. He stormed ahead, setting the pace and expecting everyone else to keep up. And he really didn’t seem inclined to back off the subject now. She might as well do it quickly and cleanly. Maybe it would even salve his pride to know that she didn’t view this situation as doing him a favor. “I owe you.”


Buy it on Amazon.

And there is a fantastic opportunity for medical romance writers or all writers wanting to try their hand at medical romance. You will get feedback within 24 hours. Read here.

Amalie's latest release is UNCOVERING HER SECRETS and she has an autographed paper copy for one commenter! She's also running a raffle until 4-28-14 at


  1. What flaw is a deal-breaker for me? A cruel streak, whether it's directed at animals or other people. I don't care if the dude looks like a Greek god; if he isn't kind, it's a no-go.

    1. Good one, Susan. I have been trying to think of whether I have any true deal-breakers... but hadn't come up with anything before you said that. But now I'm thinking... that would probably do that for me!

  2. Also wanted to thank Nas for having me :)

  3. I agree that too cruel a streak in a protagonist is a fatal flaw for me. Enjoyed this interview!

    1. Thank you, Shelly.

      I feel a bit silly for not having thought of it when I asked my deal-breaker question. I quite like messed-up, broken characters... I guess I thought I could hang with anything as long as it worked in the story. But I can't even picture someone cruel to a doggie as being redeemable now!

  4. Oi! What a stupid Dr! And welcome to my world I am always falling down !

    1. Are you also a fan of sandals and other low-heeled footware as I am? I love heels,on OTHER PEOPLE. That terrible sprain that happened in this story? Because of some adorable(And pricy) shoes I just HAD TO HAVE... wore once, and never managed again.

  5. Hey Guys, I just realized that I didn't tell Nas before she posted! Doing a giveaway of one signed paperback at each stop. Also have a rafflecopter running at my website, if you want to enter!

  6. Hey Susan, I have a book for you :) Pop by and leave your mailing address and I shall pop paperback onto the snail's back so it can get to crawling your direction!

  7. Somehow I missed this interview back in March- but I loved it. Nurses are awesome and we should all give them more thanks! Amalie's story is great- though I am sorry to hear she is clumsy like me. :) Wishing her all the best!


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