I am proud and honored to have been given the opportunity to write regular columns for the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper which focus on Stage IV cancer patient life and issues.

My writing style for these columns is a bit different than the style I use for this blog.  The style is both more creative and more focused – less raw and conversational, more polished.  I think the newspaper column format leads me to do my absolute best writing. There is a strict 500 word limit.  Working under those constraints, I have to chose my words very carefully! And as I go through final editing to get under 500 words, absolutely all filler words and sentences are removed to focus on the key message that I want to convey.

The column series has generated large general population readership – I absolutely love doing it and I look forward to writing these columns about every 2 weeks.  I love spreading my writing wings a bit and being as creative as I can in these columns – who would have thought even a couple of months ago that scientist Dr. Tom Marsilje would be writing that sentence?!? It is simply a great opportunity to give the general public a window into the Stage IV world…

Here are a list of links to the columns, in chronological order, from first to most recent.  Enjoy!! -Tom

List of Philadelphia Inquirer columns from first to most recent:


June 3, 2016 – In seconds, this cancer scientist became a survivor

June 6, 2016 – At ASCO, hope for cancer patients who need it most

June 20, 2016 – A currently incurable summer vacation

July 1, 2016 – Living with stage IV cancer: I’ve never felt more alive

July 18, 2016 – Stage IV Life: Taking charge when medical teams disagree

July 26, 2016 – Band of brothers and sisters

August 12, 2016 – Living with stage IV cancer: Report from my currently incurable summer vacation

August 31,2016 – Stage IV chemo life filled with hope

September 16, 2016 – The “Talk”: a moment no currently incurable cancer patient forgets

October 5, 2016 – Chemo Brain is Very Real

October 25, 2016Seizing the Chance for a Clinical Trial

November 10, 2016 – Chemo is no longer killing my cancer. Here’s why I still have hope.

November 23, 2016 Stage IV life: Being thankful for every day [Thanksgiving post]

December 19, 2016Cancer changes his Christmas, but can’t take away his joy [Christmas post]


February 8, 2017 – For cancer patient/scientist, clinical trial is the adventure of his life

February 24, 2017 – The day cancer took me from anticipation to devastation — and then we danced

March 24, 2017When his cancer grows more sinister, he fights back – and waits for news

August 7, 2017 – On this year’s summer vacation, it’s not about physical abilities, it’s about attitude






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