Wednesday, 7 April 2010


I've had problems with my back for years but over the last few months it has reached the stage that my back muscles are totally seized up most of the time. Not only is this painful and distressing, but it means that I'm having difficulty writing on my computer.

The problem areas are my neck, shoulders and between my shoulder blades.

I've hardly used my computer over the last month to see if it would make a difference but it hasn't.

I'm actually writing this under the influence of paracetamol and codeine, ibruprofen, and tramadol. Also, I have magnets all the way down either side of my spine, and am wearing a tens machine, neck collar and shoulder brace.

Believe you me, you have to really want to write to be togged up like this.

Also, I sit on a special back-less chair and my key board is raised on a slant.

I'm doing everything I can to strengthen my back: swimming, walking, daily stretches and pilates; I pace myself and give myself plenty of time for relaxation; I go to an osteopath regularly and I don't lift heavy things etc etc. But at the moment all these things aren't enough.


The bladder problem was a mere inconvience (pardon the pun) compared with this.

The problem originated from a slightly twisted spine and pelvis and made considerable worse by a chiropractor who over-treated me, including my neck, which I'd never had trouble with before.

Hey-ho. Such is life.

The plan for my writing, therefore, is as follows:-

* I shall concentrate on my second novel Winchester Blues, working for no more than 30 minutes twice a day

* My technical manager i.e.John, will write posts for this blog and the new additions of Facebook and My Space as I dictate to him (lying on a comfy duvee and tickling the dog). Since he has a full time job, this will only be roughly once a week and it may take time to answer comments.

By the way, a big Hi to Dorothy, who has left comments on all three of my sites. Very briefly, I'll reply. Yes, Amsterdam is a beautiful, friendly and interesting city, with a wide variety of small shops along most of the canals. And no, we aren't going to the festival in Mali unless there's a hotel with a balcony right next to the venue!

For those of you who have happened upon this post, let me tempt you with reading some of the many posts already written, including:-

* My first novel Cyprus Bluesin its entirety (it can be read on your computer or downloaded)

* Accounts plus photographs of the Essaouira Gnawa and World Music Festival in Morroco

* A short video of Bob Wisdom (Bunny from The Wire) and myself in conversation at last year's festival

*The Wire, which is the best TV series ever made

*Further TV and film reviews

*Book reviews

*Pearls of wisdom

*6 word memoirs

*Posts about Winchester, where I live, local groups etc

*Posts about the newspaper reports and short stories I've had published

*Posts about the writing process

*and not forgetting my most popular post - my open letter to Van Morrison (who still hasn't replied yet!)

Plus much, much more.

Sadly my 30 minutes is up but can I ask again, if you've any advice about how to help with back/neck/shoulder pain, I'd be very, very grateful.


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