The surgery was a success, apparently – level-two cervical fusion and discectomy – funny story, post-op, doctor waltzed into my room, smiling ear-to-ear, shaking his head. He said, “Your type of herniation, Shane – and I’ve been doing this a long time,” he lunged for my wrist – well, he reached for my radial pulse, but through the molasses-haze of narcotics, he moved very much like a methamphetamine-crazed flea doing stand-up-improvisation with Robin Williams – but he said, “A long time, sixteen years – I’ve dealt with every sort of herniated disc you can imagine, even for professional athletes. But yours - your discs were the worst I’ve ever seen.”
Half-asleep, high as hell, I said something like, “Hhnng?”
And he said, “Yep, your discs were terrible – I can’t even imagine what that much pressure felt like!” So he tells my wife and I (mostly my wife, since I was in la-la land) that not only had my c67 disc burst into the spinal canal and push against the adjacent nerve, it also wrapped around the vertebrate and stopped flush against the opposite-side nerve - one disc, two nerves, lottery ticket? Basically, the disc burst so hard out of the left side of my neck, my right arm went numb. He also said that, once decompressed, my c56 disc fell apart like wet newspaper.
I’m back, more or less. Still dizzy and a little stiff, but alive. I had this aggressive promotional campaign planned for this week, which I’ll have to push back until I’ve healed enough for travel. There will certainly be a small tour – I’ll start in the Twin Cities, then head over to Boston, Dallas, Denver and San Diego, maybe Chicago – what determines which cities I visit is where I make my sales. Stay tuned for updates.
I would like to take this moment and thank my hometown – the East Side of St. Paul.
When I started promoting this novel, I wasn't entirely sure how things were going to pan out. I've been pretty reclusive these past years – lost touch with old friends, kept in touch with others (mainly through my wife). The moment I signed the contract with Boxfire, I knew Artifact would need strong support from home if it was going to have any chance at all. My publisher advised that I set up a LIKE metric for each month leading up to release. I expected a ten percent growth of total likes each month, for eight months, which I would have been more than happy with. Honestly, I couldn't think of any reason why people would bother with anything I had going on, so I set a pretty modest goal - 193 page-likes before release. Well, to my pleasant surprise, your continuous support blew that goal out of the water: 255 likes at the finish line. No matter what happens, know that you've made me feel relevant, and that you’ve rekindled that campfire sense of home and community, even if it's only for a little while. Many thanks.
Now, if you’re into science-fiction thrillers , I may have a book for you to check out…