"One cannot have poor health and good skin: Skin wears its health like a badge for all to see, everything is unashamedly laid bare. Here it is, an organ that once developed disparate competing colours to help rebuild a species, and in doing so, displays this simple fact: evolution and skin colour are not words we visit in a book or museum; they
are windows to the soul of our natural origins".
"I draw inspiration from small things, even nature – it was in thinking about how grass doesn't grow under a pine tree did I come up with a new technique of skin grafting. More recently, while understanding skin lines (LINK), I became curious about nature’s golden spiral pattern (LINK) and came up with a new plastic surgical technique". (LINK)
"I think I am fundamentally a storyteller and stories are important both in literature as well as science,” Paul said. “My medical/scientific lectures are popular because people say my writing is lyrical. I might be a poet or philosopher at heart".
"Inspiring young minds.
I like working with kids from disadvantaged backgrounds and schools – I teach them creative writing and build school libraries. I give up a day a week for work in literacy. In Auckland alone there are 99 low-decile schools. That is frightening. For many of these ‘brown and poor’ kids it isn’t real to be a doctor or lawyer. I am hoping just to change the life of one kid by inspiring him or her".
Dr Sharad Paul (MD) - Interviewed on TV3 (New Zealand) - Campbell Live
Dr Sharad Paul (MD) - Interviewed by Justin Latif - Western Leader
Dr Sharad Paul (MD) - Interviewed by Alok Soni - Your Story
Chennai Lit for Life festival, India Jan 2015 - interview on Kite Flyers
"Dr Paul has been described in the media as "one of the most inspiring, intelligent and compassionate men you are likely to meet". TIME magazine, in 2008, called him "Open Heart Surgeon"
~ NZ Medical Association
" A distinguished physician such as Dr. Sharad Paul with a sense for "stories" understands the importance of narrative medicine in improving patient-physician communication. He is the Sigmund Freud and Arthur Schnitzler of our times."
~ Prof. Harald Kittler,
Dermatologist and Chair of World Congress of Dermoscopy and Skin Imaging, Vienna
Dr. Sharad P. Paul was born in England, and grew up in India. He is an adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Health and Faculty of Creative Technologies at the Auckland University of Technology -- focusing on curiosity-driven research and disruptive innovation. He also has a busy medical practice specializing in skin cancer surgery and divides his time between Australia and New Zealand. Sharad holds senior academic positions in skin cancer surgery at the universities of Queensland (Senior Lecturer, Skin Cancer) and Auckland (Hon. Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Surgery).
He is also an author, evolutionary biologist and holds a Masters in Medical Law and Ethics /Master of Philosophy (M Phil) from the University of Glasgow, and is currently completing a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph D) in cutaneous/dermatological surgery (focusing on skin cancer surgery) at the University of Queensland. His Skin Surgery Clinic has one of the largest series of skin cancer patients worldwide, with over 100,000 consultations and 35,000 operations since the clinic was established in 1996.
Dr Sharad P. Paul has served on the National Commission of UNESCO, and teaches creative writing to disadvantaged children (by visiting schools personally once a week, and funds school libraries) via his own Baci Foundation. His past businesses, such as Baci Lounge, an award-winning bookstore served as a model of social entrepreneurship by funding literacy programmes in schools. In 2008, his bookstore/café Baci Lounge won Auckland's Top Shop retail award, beating every other café. No wonder, he was called 'Renaissance Man' by Canvas magazine, and 'Polymath' by Good magazine, Sharad was named 'Open Heart Surgeon' by TIME magazine in 2008. Sharad initially trained in general and plastic surgery and is currently a Fellow of the Skin Cancer College of Australasia, and is also a Fellow of the Royal NZ College of General Practitioners.
Sharad is a sought-after speaker at both medical and ideas conferences and recently delivered a keynote at THINK, considered one of the major thinking conferences (speakers included Robert De Niro, Tina Brown, Amitabh Bachchan, VS Naipaul, Dr Alan Russell, Louise Leakey etc) on his widely acclaimed book, Skin, a biography. He featured at the Auckland Writers Festival on May 17th, 2014 (session after Alexander McCall-Smith and alongside Booker-Prize-winner Eleanor Catton) and at the 'Lit for Life' literary festival in Chennai, India in January 2015. In January 2016, he was a guest at the renowned Jaipur Literary Festival (JLF), alongside Stephen Fry, Margaret Atwood, William Dalrymple, Marlon James, Colm Toibin and Atul Gawande. JLF is the world's largest literary festival with over 300,000 attendees (that in previous years has featured Oprah Winfrey) – an event described by the Mail on Sunday (10 August 2008) as "the grandest literary Festival of them all". In June 2016, he will be at the Dalkey Book Festival in Dublin, Ireland alongside Malcolm Gladwell, John Banville and others -- a festival described by Salman Rushdie as 'the best little festival in the world.
Sharad is considered the only author ever to have written, fiction, non-fiction, poetry and a medical textbook in a career. His non-fiction may read like literary prose and his fiction may seem spiritual or political. Who else would write a poetry book on melanoma, the deadly skin cancer with a surreptitious mission to improve patient-doctor communication?
His first novel, Cool Cut seemed both raw and real to readers, that it was re-released in an extended version by Harper Collins as The Kite Flyers in 2014.
He has featured at many literary festivals internationally and considered a thought-leader. In April 2015, a dinner was held at Keble College, Oxford, 'in honour of Dr. Sharad P. Paul.'
"Medicine is a complex narrative of human industry and scientific zeal, in a world full of disease, real and imagined. When genes were mapped, everyone assumed humanity would be reduced to binary code, we'd become digital humans living our imaginary lives.
But somethings small and selfish, our genes are a form of history. We have to embrace humanity's backstory and heredity, even if we cannot change it. Evolution may be complicated and messy, but we cannot turn our backs on it.
Good health needs some creative work – a sense of aerobicized urgency combined with knowledge of our genetic history".
"In each book, an author has a favorite line. In my latest novel, The Kite Flyers (Harper Collins, 2014), there is this passage: “Old friendships are a tunnel into our past.
No one should ask questions in a tunnel. Tunnels echo too much.” In the course of these wanderings, I came across many tunnels and realized I had to ask many questions, even if the answers surprised my scientific mind.
After all, biology has no bigotry—it welcomes both doubters and believers into its fold. As a physician and scientist, I had to listen carefully and make sure I was transcribing these evolutionary echoes... about food and fitness, hunger and health, mind and matter—things essential for the enjoyment of life’s goodness, a desire that gnaws at all of us".
More media (podcasts, links and YouTube videos).
Living It Up: Why skin protection is a must, CNN-News18