Hurry up Nurse: Memoirs of nurse training in the 1970s / Dawn Brookes


"Humorous, candid and compassionate! One of the best books in its genre." Advanced Nurse Practitioner
Dawn had no idea what she wanted to do with her life but a set of circumstances collide that see her attending an interview for nurse training in 1977. There follows what someone describes as a howling good read. The memoir follows the ups and downs of a trainee nurse during the 1970s. It is written with humour and candour but also a great deal of compassion.
The book follows the author's experiences as she and her friends come to terms with the non-stop hustle and bustle of hospital life. As you are drawn into the book you will be introduced to many unforgettable patients' and their stories, while getting to know a cracking good storyteller, when you follow her onto the hospital wards. Dawn shares the discipline, laughter and inevitable sadness as she learns to cope with the strains of shift work. It also highlights the domineering presence of the Ward Sister during that era.
'The Sister called to me. 'Nurse Brookes, set up a trolley for a lumbar puncture.''I have never set up a trolley for a lumbar puncture Sister.''WELL LEARN!' She shouted and stormed of up the ward.
The chapters are separated into ward placements and the experiences of caring for patients in each of these different environments draws you in and helps you to understand what the student nurses' went through during their training.
The most challenging placements are shared with humour and understanding, acknowledging her weaknesses. remember, she writes, she is still a teenager coming across daily what most people will not experience in a lifetime.
As well as providing an insight into nurse training, Hurry up Nurse,is a warmly written medical biography that treats us to a glimpse into the social history of life in the 1970s and early 1980s. This funny & poignant nursing memoir will make you laugh and make you cry.
Pick up this page turning book today.
Author Interview:What made you want to write a nursing memoir?
I think, in a way, it was inevitable. I have always been a reader and whilst I love to read fiction, I tend to read more non-fiction and biographies than anything else. At first I started writing for myself and perhaps for future generations of family to find when researching a family tree. As the book developed, I became that young girl again and the vivid memories of patients and friends came flooding back. I felt that their stories and bravery needed to be shared. The other reason was that the memories made me laugh and remember the days when I loved nursing, there was so much fun and camaraderie at that time.
Were there any times when you wanted to give up writing the memoir?
Yes, indeed. Initially I started the work while still working full time and it was difficult to find the time and the discipline to write, it tended to be start, stop, start for about a year. I really gave up when my laptop met with an accident and I lost five chapters that could not be recovered. At that point I did give up and it wasn't until I broke my foot at work and had to take some time off that I found myself with too much time on my hands as I was unable to drive. I found the old file with the original chapters and started again - finishing the book in six weeks. The rest is history.
Who would enjoy this book?
Anyone who likes human interest stories and hospital dramas.

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