Former doctor finds time for prose
Writing is Park City resident Sol Browdy’s first love. But he didn’t publish a book until he reached the golden age of 87.
"I’m never so happy as when I’m writing for pleasure," Browdy said. "I happened to be a medical director in New Jersey and I liked administration, but this writing for pleasure thing, I just love to string along words to create a sentence and convey a meaning."
His first novella, "A Strange Tale of an Aged Matched Two-some," was released by Publish America and within a year he published the short story, "Single mom Breaks Out of Mold." On June 29, Browdy will attending a book review and signing for his latest work at the Spotted Frog Bookstore at 7 p.m.
His passion for prose has grown since he was a young man.
"All my life, since I can remember, I wanted to be a doctor, until high school when I became interested in sports and became the sports editor of the newspaper. It (his love for the written word) was just one of those things that grew on me from the time I served on the newspaper in high school."
Despite his passion for crafting sentences, he continued down the doctor path.
"I still went ahead and became a physician first and thought I could write along the way," he said.
About the time he finished pre-med at Wake Forest University, Browdy was drafted in to serve in the Korean War. At the time, there was a shortage of doctors and the Army sent him through medical school, otherwise, Browdy said, he and his parents would not have been able to afford the education.
"The Army sent me through medical school and paid everything," Browdy said. "I was really a lucky duck."
During his career as a podiatrist, he continued to write for magazines in the health care genre. He often sent articles to the magazine Medical Economics. Although he enjoyed his career in medicine and had opportunities to write for various publications, Browdy said it didn’t leave him enough time to sit down and write fiction.
"I picked the lousiest job with pediatrics," Browdy said. "I would get calls at midnight for the darndest things. I was happy to leave pediatrics, although I happened to enjoy it. I sort of feel a kinship for every parent. If I wanted to do it over again, however, I would still go into medicine but would pick a better specialty that would give me more time for writing at my leisure."
When he retired, his focus aimed more toward writing again as he soon registered for writing courses at the local community college. But, his retirement didn’t necessarily leave him with the extra time he expected. At 62 he had his first heart attack. After being discharged from the hospital following bypass surgery, he was readmitted a few days later because the heart attack extended to different parts of the organ.
"You can say, I consider myself the luckiest guy alive, I also had another cardiac arrest as I was playing indoor tennis doubles. I survived that too so I am just very grateful to be around."
Eight years ago, Browdy’s wife, Elaina, died while they were still living in New Jersey. Browdy then came out to Park City where his daughter lived. Finally he had time to write.
Since he has been here he joined the board of the Park City Motion Picture Film Series and the Temple Har Shalom. After spending all his life on the East Coast, Browdy has fallen in love with Park City.
"I just love it," he said. The people are so nice, the scenery is so tremendous."
Recently he has taken part in a series of writing workshops at the University of Iowa. He credits that institution for aiding his recent published work.
His first book is based on a friendship he had with a 39-year-old.
"That’s what made me write the first book," Browdy said, "because at 80, you’re not contemplating a friendship with a 40-year-old."
His second book was based on meeting an attractive single mother of three.
"She had three young girls and no father, and that sort of set me off into imparting that tale and seeing if I can do something about it," he said.
Browdy will be holding a book review and signing for his short story, "Single Mom Breaks Out of Mold," June 29 at 7 p.m. at the Spotted Frog Bookstore. For more information call the Spotted Frog at 575-2665.
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