Sep 282019

I’m sorry to have flaked out on everybody and not post a blog yesterday. It’s something I try very hard not to ever allow to happen. But sometimes life gets in the way.

When I had my biopsy surgery on Monday, they sent me home with something called Tramadol, which is an opioid-based pain medication. I’m not wild about taking any kind of pain pills, especially opioids, but the doctor said I would probably need them for two or three days. As it turned out, I took two when I got home from the hospital on Monday, one in the afternoon and one in the evening. By the next day the incisions didn’t hurt enough to worry about it, so I didn’t take anymore and figured that was it. Boy, was I wrong!

Thursday I was making corrections to my new book when all of a sudden I started experiencing severe stomach pain and distress, and it continued to get worse over the next several hours. I won’t say it’s the worst pain I have ever had in my life, but it was pretty darn close! It felt like a pair of porcupines and a python were duking it out in my guts, with a Brahma bull acting as referee. For a while there I was just lying on the cool tile of the bathroom floor, wondering if I was going to die and hoping I would.

Fortunately, by the time I woke up yesterday morning I was feeling a lot better, and though I’m still not up to 100%, I’m getting close. I did some research, and also emailed a doctor friend of mine, and he thinks that there was a reaction between the Tramadol and the Prednisone, or one of the other medications they have me on. But he could not explain why it took that long to manifest. I’ve been on the other meds for a while now, so the Tramadol seems to be the culprit.

As for the biopsies, they came back negative for giant cell arteritis, also known as temporal arteritis. I guess it’s a good thing that I’m not going to go blind from it, but at the same time, we don’t know what’s causing the headaches, the dizziness, or the severe neck pain. I had an appointment with one of the doctors yesterday, who now wants me to have an MRI of my neck. I guess that will happen sometime early next week. You know what they say about getting old not being for sissies? They are right.

In other news, I have about 30 pages to finish making the corrections on in my new book, which I will complete today and then get uploaded to Amazon. With any luck at all, it should be live sometime this evening, or tomorrow at the latest, depending on how fast they do things on their end once I upload it. If you subscribe to my free authors newsletter, watch your email for a notifications as soon as I get the link from Amazon. And if you don’t already subscribe, send me an email at and I will get you added to the list.

Be sure to enter our latest Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an autographed copy of Big Lake Lynching, the second book in my Big Lake mystery series. This is one of the few books I have left over with the original cover, before I commissioned Elizabeth Mackey to redo the covers for the entire series. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.

Thought For The Day – If I’m quiet around you, I’m trying to figure you out. Or I’ve already figured you out and I don’t like you.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

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