This is my first post on “The Weekly Packet.” I have three goals today. The first is to explain the site name. Simon Winchester, in his recent book Atlantic, described the development of regular mail service between North America and England. The small, fast ships that carried the packets of mail were called “packet ships,” or simply “packets.”

I’ve contended for some time that social media and the internet push us to respond too quickly to many questions. Granted, “Are you hungry?” or “Care for a glass of wine” should not require a great deal of thought. But, “why are prescription drug prices in the US higher than in Canada or the EU?” takes some mulling over before banging out a paragraph or two.

So, the idea of taking some time to reflect on issues and craft a well-thought out position brought to mind the era when substantial, hand-written letters would arrive at decently-spaced intervals. Thus, the title, The Weekly Packet,” is intended to give readers the sense of waiting at the dock with the smell of salt air and a bit of anticipation for something worth reading.

The second goal is to introduce myself. I’m Roger Mills, a retired academic cardiologist with a passion for reading and writing. I have written a fair number of articles in the peer-reviewed medical literature, as well as book chapters, and a couple of medical texts. I’m currently working on final revisions and trying to publish my first non-fiction book.

Finally, I hope to make some new contacts among the medical and scientific non-fiction writing community. I’m a newcomer, and open to suggestions and comments.

Thanks for opening “The Weekly Packet.”