Tag Archives: books

Release Date Announced for BOLT ACTION REMEDY

My next novel, Bolt Action Remedy, will be released on October 2nd, 2017 by Down & Out Books. Here is a bit of a preview of what’s in store:

Former Pittsburgh narcotics detective Trevor Galloway has been hired to look into the year-old homicide of a prominent businessman who was gunned down on his estate in Central Pennsylvania.  When Galloway arrives, he determines the murder could have only been committed by someone extremely skilled in two areas:  Skiing and shooting.  He believes the assailant should not be too difficult to identify given the great amount of skill and athleticism needed to pull off the attack.  When he discovers the victim’s property is next door to a biathlon training camp, the situation becomes significantly more complicated.

Galloway makes plenty of enemies as he sifts through stories about lucrative land deals, possible drug connections, and uncovers evidence suggesting the homicide may have been elaborate suicide.  As he attempts to navigate through an unfamiliar rural landscape, he does his best not to succumb to an old drug addiction, or become confused by one of his occasional hallucinations.  Oh, and a Pittsburgh drug gang enforcer known as The Lithuanian – if he’s even real – is tracking Galloway and wants to take his eyes.  Galloway would rather keep those.   

In the coming months, the cover art will be revealed at BOLO Books, I will be posting an interview series with a world class biathlete, a biathlon blogger, and a writer who can ski a hell of a lot better than me (which isn’t saying much). I’ll also be participating in the Five Shots Blog Tour, with some of your favorite bloggers.

 

Advance praise for Bolt Action Remedy:

J.J. Hensley is a crime writer who deserves readers’ attention and trust, because beyond his ever-stronger prose, he brings his ex-badge carrier’s street smart eyes to this hard world we live in.  Hensley goes beyond clichés to the heart of his fictions and his characters, and delivers stories worth your time.  Put him on your READ list.”

— James Grady, author of Six Days of the Condor. Recipient of the Raymond Chandler medal and the Grand Prix du Roman Noir

 

In Trevor Galloway, J.J. Hensley has given us a deliciously flawed hero whose unique gift makes him a phenomenal investigator, but also leaves him teetering on the razor-thin edge of genius and insanity. In Bolt Action Remedy, the reader follows Galloway on a chilling journey into the snowy world of biathlon as well as into the shadowy vortex of his wounded mind where neither he nor the reader knows at what point reality ends and hallucination begins. Hensley weaves a captivating tale while providing an authentic voice and a dash of ironic humor.  

 -Annette Dashofy, USA Today Bestselling Author of the Zoe Chambers Mysteries

 

Fast-paced and funny, Bolt Action Remedy is an action-packed thriller that will keep readers guessing from the first to the final page.

 -Rebecca Drake, author of Only Ever You

 

Bolt Action Remedy is the real thing:  fast, dangerous, and with a unique setting used in interesting ways.  Oh, and another thing:  It’s entertaining as hell.

-Andrew Pyper, International Thriller Writers Award winning author of The Damned and The Demonologist

 

Bolt Action Remedy marks the welcome return of J.J. Hensley’s trademark blend of breathless action, haunting atmosphere and sly wit.

-Gwen Florio, award-winning author of Montana and Disgraced

 

Strap yourselves in. This author guides you to the conclusion through twists, turns, and drops that will leave you so engrossed, you’ll lose track of time.

-Lucie Fleury Dunn, Movies in my Mind Book Reviews

 

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, a Thriller Award finalist which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

 

The Coolest Sport You Aren’t Watching

I knew after setting my first novel (Resolve) against the backdrop of a marathon that I would someday try to write another novel that in some way involved an endurance sport.  I tinkered around with creating a plot that revolved around a triathlon.  I considered developing a story that revolved around a cycling event.  But, none of these ideas felt right in my mind and were all abandoned with prejudice.  Then, one day it hit me.  If I was going to write a murder mystery involving a strenuous athletic event then why not choose one in which the athletes were highly trained with weapons?  No, not fencing (although that’s not a bad idea).  I’m talking about a sport that is wildly popular in some parts of the word, but not in the United States – which is kind of odd considering our love of guns.  I’m talking about the sport of biathlon.

Now, if you don’t know about biathlon then allow me to explain in the simplest terms.   The competitors, each with a rifle on his/her back, ski cross-country at ridiculous paces before stopping to fire at incredibly small targets.  Generally, missing a target means having to circle a penalty loop (one lap for each target missed).  Of course I’m oversimplifying this amazingly complex sport, but you can learn some of the basics here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biathlon

http://www.dummies.com/sports/olympic-sports/biathlon-in-the-winter-olympics/

The sport is absolutely fascinating and if you have ever tried to fire a weapon when your heart is racing and lungs are burning, then you can certainly appreciate the talent of the competitors.  The specialize rifles used in the competitions are lightweight and crazy-accurate.  And they look cool.

biathlon-photo

Now, I realized the challenges of writing a novel that dealt with biathlon.  First of all, I’m not a biathlete.  In fact, I can’t even ski.  So, I read up on the sport and then sought out some help from Olympic biathlete Curt Shreiner.  Then, I developed a story that wouldn’t require the reader to have any prerequisite knowledge of the sport.  Fortunately, the book was picked up by Down & Out Books and scheduled for publication in the Fall of 2017.

In the coming months, I’ll be posting interviews with several people from the biathlon world including Louise Wood who blogs about biathlon at https://biathlon23.wordpress.com/, Eric Chandler who has competed in biathlon and is a writer, and Clare Egan who is a biathlete currently working toward gaining a spot on the U.S. Olympic team for the 2018 Olympic Games.  Additionally, I’m going to be participating in the Five Shots Blog Tour (because of the five targets biathletes shoot – see what I did there?) which will involve several popular blogs to include The Book Wheel, The Suspense is Killing Me, Biathlon23, Running ‘N’ Reading, and Novelgossip.  All of this will lead up to the release of my book Bolt Action Remedy, which is a real thing… I promise.

So, please be sure to follow this blog and my other social media sites to learn more about this great sport and my upcoming book.  With the Winter Olympics less than a year away, it’s time to start studying!

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, a Thriller Award finalist which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

https://hensleybooks.wordpress.com
http://www.hensley-books.com
https://www.facebook.com/hensleybooks
https://www.goodreads.com/JJHensley
Twitter @JJHensleyauthor

Watch for my new book, BOLT ACTION REMEDY, in 2017!

AVAILABLE NOW!

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

 

Interviewed by S.W. Lauden

I was interviewed (or, as he says “Interrogated”) by author S.W. Lauden on his site.  He asked things.  I said things.  I discuss why I set many of my stories in Pittsburgh and preview what’s to come in 2017 and 2018.

Interrogation—J.J. Hensley

 

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, a Thriller Award finalist which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

https://hensleybooks.wordpress.com
http://www.hensley-books.com
https://www.facebook.com/hensleybooks
https://www.goodreads.com/JJHensley
Twitter @JJHensleyauthor

Watch for my new book, BOLT ACTION REMEDY, in 2017!

AVAILABLE NOW!

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

On The Thrill Begins: Know Your Region – Pittsburgh

Fellow Pittsburgh-area author Thomas Sweterlitsch joins me on the International Thriller Writers’ page, The Thrill Begins, to discuss why Pittsburgh is a hotspot for writers and artists.

skyline photo

Photo courtesy of Dave DiCello

Hot furnaces, molten steel, and suffocating smog. Pittsburgh is none of that these days. In fact, you may not realize it, but you’ve already visited the new Pittsburgh. You saw Batman tear through the streets in The Dark Knight Rises. You watched Tom Cruise star in Jack Reacher, kicking ass through multiple Pittsburgh neighborhoods. Russell Crowe attempted a jailbreak in The Next Three Days. And let’s not forget Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks in Zack and Miri Make a Porno. Actually, let’s really try to forget that last one. Please.

Pittsburgh has a booming film industry and is increasingly popular in the book world. With a growing list of talented authors, writers from the Steel City are found on countless bestseller and award lists. Two of us, Tom Sweterlitsch and myself, took a few moments to explore a special place where bridges are abundant and restaurants put fries on top of your salad.

Continue the article here:  http://thrillbegins.com/2016/09/22/meet-your-region-pittsburgh/

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

https://hensleybooks.wordpress.com
http://www.hensley-books.com
https://www.facebook.com/hensleybooks
https://www.goodreads.com/JJHensley
Twitter @JJHensleyauthor

Watch for my new book, BOLT ACTION REMEDY, in 2017!

AVAILABLE NOW!

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

 

 

Book Cover Design for Dummies… or Just Me

Did you ever wonder how book covers are selected? I had no idea until I became a published novelist and I assumed authors had a great amount of input in to the way his or her creation would look. When one views the covers of my first three novels, it seems obvious there was an intentional effort to create a “branding” of sort since I’ve had two publishers yet each of the covers are black and red. Yep. Deliberate. Intentional. Part of a master plan.

Or not.

Many people think the author is the person who chooses the cover design, but that is usually not the case with traditionally published works. In the case of my first novel, Resolve, I had received an email from the publisher letting me know it was time for the cover art selection. I thought, “Great! I’ve got so many ideas!” I replied to the publisher letting them know that my incredibly artistic mind (I did pull down a solid C in my eighth grade Art class) was ready to go. The publisher politely responded with a thanks, but we’ve got this message. I was shocked. I was deflated. However, I was determined to have my creative genius play a role in this vital process.

So, I asked the publisher what kinds of cover designs they were considering. They reluctantly told me they were going to select from five drafts they had on hand. I asked if I could see the drafts. They reluctantly sent me the drafts. None of the drafts were close to what I had envisioned, and being a first-time author with no track record, I decided it was wise to let them know I wasn’t thrilled with any of the selections. They didn’t care. Ever determined to have my voice heard, I decided to tell them that IF they were going to insist on going with one of the drafts, then the obvious choice for a book set in Pittsburgh was the one with the black cover and gold font.

Have you seen the cover for Resolve?

Not black and gold.

Not black and gold.

Now, it turns out the publisher was a lot smarter than me. Covers with red font and graphics stand out in the sea of novels, especially in the e-reader world in which we often only glance at a thumbnail image on a screen. The cover I would have gone with would have been lost in the myriad of images we scroll through on a home computer or Kindle. Lesson learned.

My next book, Measure Twice, was picked up by a different publisher as part of a two-book deal. When that publisher sent me an email letting me know it was time for the cover art selection, I decided to prove I had grown as an author and remained silent. I politely responded that I’m sure they had some great ideas and would come up with a great design. To my great surprise, the publisher immediately responded that they would love my input into the design.

I was ecstatic.

I was elated.

I ran to my wife (my creative partner-in-crime fiction) and said, “The publisher wants our ideas for the cover of Measure Twice! They actually want our input!”

My wife replied, “Do we have any ideas?”

I stood with my mouth agape. After a few seconds I said, “No! I didn’t think they would want any!”

My wife and I (okay, mostly my wife) came up with an idea for the design and I quickly sent it off to the publisher. It wasn’t until two or three days later I realized that in my email to the publisher, I had failed to mention my preferred color schemes. This one could be in black and gold. I sent another email to the publisher, pointing out the omission.

The publisher responded with, “No worries. The cover designer took a look at your first book and knew you must like the black and red scheme. So, here is what she came up with. We’re going with this.”

Also not black and gold. But my wife came up with the awesome ruler/knife combo.

Also not black and gold. But my wife came up with the awesome ruler/knife combo.

Of course.

By the time my third novel, Chalk’s Outline, was set for publication, people were associated the colors black and red with my books. Needless to say, I suggested we stick with black and red and here is where we ended up.

Chalk's Outline cover. White flag of surrender not pictured.

Chalk’s Outline cover. White flag of surrender not pictured.

I don’t know what my future book covers will look like (now I actually love the black and red), but I’ve chosen to take the only speak when spoken to approach, as there are many people smarter than me in the book industry and it seems things have a way of working themselves out. That being said, if the cover of my next mystery contains a bare-chested, muscular man, with flowing locks of hair… I’m probably going to deviate from my silent approach.

Feel free to comment below.

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

https://hensleybooks.wordpress.com
http://www.hensley-books.com
https://www.facebook.com/hensleybooks
https://www.goodreads.com/JJHensley
Twitter @JJHensleyauthor

Watch for my new book, BOLT ACTION REMEDY, in 2017!

AVAILABLE NOW!

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

 

Why Does the Secret Service Use Code Names?

Most people are aware that individuals being protected by the U.S. Secret Service are given code names.  This fact is not secret and all it takes is a quick search of the Internet to read a list of code names used by those the agency has protected (protectees).  Recently, a friend asked me why the code names are used if everybody seems to know about them.  The reasons are simple.  Code names were first used before radio communications could be encrypted and during an era when members of the media were less likely to have access to, and subsequently report, such information.  Today, journalists have a great amount of access to political events and will often be standing within earshot of agents who out of necessity are communicating via radio or cell phone.  It does not take a genius to figure out a protectee’s code name when an agent keys up a radio microphones and says the words, “Evergreen is moving to the motorcade” and then Hillary Clinton jumps into a limo.  So, why continue with the use of code names?

Secret Service code names are more than just a tradition

Secret Service code names are more than just a tradition

Tradition is one reason, although not a compelling one by itself.  The more logical reasons involve the need to keep communications clear and concise.  While we tend to think of our own leaders as the focal point of any political event, the fact is the world has many Presidents, Vice Presidents, First Ladies, Secretaries, etc.  There are often events in which world leaders gather and each has his or her own security detail, staff, and motorcade.  Therefore, if a U.S. Secret Service agent working one of these events were to say, “The President is moving to the dining hall” it may not be clear which nation’s President, or perhaps which former President, is in motion.

Now one may think it would be simpler to just say the last name of the protectee, but that’s not the case.  If one says, President Bush, this could be one of two individuals and they both could be attending the same event.  It is also possible a similar situation could occur if Hillary Clinton were to win the general election and become President.  Additionally, the U.S. Secret Service protects visiting Heads-of-State and some last names may be lengthy or difficult to pronounce.  Thus a simple word representing a protectee makes communications simpler for everyone involved.

The White House Communications Agency assigns the code names, but the major protectees get some say in the matter.  Generally, the protectee is asked to choose a code name from a list of unambiguous words that start with a particular letter.  In the case of the President and Vice President, each family member will get a code name that begins with the same letter.  For instance, Ronald Reagan was Rawhide.  Nancy Reagan used the code name Rainbow.  Ron Reagan was Reliant.

Sometimes protectees will choose a code name they feel represents a certain persona.  Rawhide matched up with the image Ronald Reagan wished to convey.  Deacon is certainly appropriate for Jimmy Carter.  While the ultimate purpose of the code name is not affected by the name itself, I have always thought some code names were better than others.  So, it made me think we should have a poll that ranks some of my favorites.  Here you will find a few code names that I always liked.  Put aside any political feelings you may have and let’s see which code name you think is the best!

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

https://hensleybooks.wordpress.com
http://www.hensley-books.com
https://www.facebook.com/hensleybooks
https://www.goodreads.com/JJHensley
Twitter @JJHensleyauthor

Watch for my new book, BOLT ACTION REMEDY, in 2017!

AVAILABLE NOW!

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology

From Writer to Superhero with One Injection

As one who believes in staying physically fit, the last couple of years have been a bit of a challenge.  A while back, a foot injury limited the number of miles I could run.  As a result, I decided to increase the frequency with which I lifted weights.  One afternoon I had just completed the very manly act of curling 100 lb. dumbells (fine… 35 lbs) and then remembered that I wanted to test out a tennis video game for our daughter on our Xbox Kinect.  I wasn’t sure if the game would be too difficult for a small child, so I decided to test it out with my formidable athletic skills.  The Kinect system involves a camera picking up on the player’s movements so you are actively “skiing” or “boxing” or, in this case, “playing tennis”.

Thus, with my massive (not droopy) biceps still being tense from doing curls, I started swinging my left arm at a tennis ball that didn’t really exist.  That’s when I felt something go horribly wrong with my elbow.  Apparently, my formidable athletic skills were no match for a game I thought my pre-schooler might enjoy.  Over the next two years, I made several trips to doctors (during which I simply said the injury occurred while lifting weights rather than having them write down “video tennis injury” in their charts).  No treatment worked.  Finally, pain forced me to visit the physicians at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), Sports Medicine facility north of Pittsburgh.  We gave cortisone shots a chance and they failed.  Another option was surgery, which has a limited success rate and includes a great deal of recovery time.  But, I was also told about an “experimental” procedure called Platelet-Rich-Plasma therapy, or PRP.

Magic serum designed to help me fight evil. Probably.

Magic serum designed to help me fight evil. Probably.

With PRP, doctors take your own blood, put it into a centrifuge, extract your platelets, and then inject them into the damaged area.  The platelets are supposed to promote healing and possibly help the patient avoid surgery.  The jury is still out, but some patients (including several pro athletes) have reported positive results.  So, rather than subject myself to surgery (only 85%) effective, I decided to give PRP a chance.

Two days before my appointment, I was called by a UPMC employee responsible for getting me pre-registered.  She told me, “This (PRP) is really cool.  I’ve never seen one of these come through!”

Okay.  That’s nice.

One day before my appointment, I was contacted with someone from UPMC who had an insurance question (although my insurance did not cover experimental treatments).  After we cleared up the insurance issue, she asked me if I had any questions.  I said I did, and rattled off a couple.  She paused (presumably looking to see what procedure I was having done) and then said, “Oooo.  PRP, huh?  I don’t know.  I’ll ask and get back to you.  The questions weren’t really important, so I assured her she didn’t need to bother.  She replied, “No, no!  I want to know.  I’ve never had anybody come through here get PRP!”

Okay.  Great. 

The day of the appointment, I showed up at the center and checked in with the receptionist.  She smiled and said, “Oh, Mr. Hensley.  You’re the one getting the special injection.”

Okay.

As I was waiting in the exam room, a medical resident came in and started to make an attempt to explain the procedure to me.  It started with, “Well… what I guess the doctor is going to do is…”

Huh?

You guess?

It turns out there is something extremely disconcerting about everyone being so anxious to see what will happen to you when you receive an experimental treatment.

The next thirty minutes involved one failed attempt at drawing my blood (damn my steely veins) and then a successful attempt.  Then my blood hit the centrifuge dance floor and the platelets were extracted.  Next, the doctor arrived and used an ultrasound to guide the syringe containing my super-charged platelets into the damaged tendon in my elbow.  Now, I have a decent pain threshold.  So keep that in mind as I explain that a long needle being pressed into a damaged tendon hurts a great deal.  The injection of the platelets into the aforementioned tendon HURTS LIKE A MOTHER.

At this point, I had three puncture wounds in my arms and two milliliters of my own yellowish platelets pumped back into my body.  I texted my wife and told her I thought the medical staff was trying to turn me into Wolverine.  She replied, “Cool!”  I reminded her that Wolverine wasn’t exactly happy and well-adjusted and then I started searching the room for a radioactive spider.  If I was going to be turned into a superhero, then I wanted to cover as many bases as possible.

It will be weeks or even months before I know if the treatment worked or if I will be asked to join the Avengers.  Former Pittsburgh Steeler Troy Polamalu had the same procedure done, so if this treatment helps me grow hair like his then I’d consider the treatment a huge success.  Elbow be damned.

All joking aside, the UPMC staff members at the Lemieux Sports Complex were tremendous and their enthusiasm, albeit a little scary at times, demonstrated their passion for the job.  I’d go back there in a heartbeat… especially if I end up developing superpowers.

J.J. Hensley is the author of RESOLVE, which is set against the backdrop of the Pittsburgh Marathon, Measure Twice, Chalk’s Outline, and other works. Hensley is a former police officer and former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service.

image1Cyprus Keller wants a future.
Jackson Channing has a past.
Robert Chalk has a rifle and a mission.  Kill Cyprus Keller and anyone who gets in his way.

 

An addict is killing Pittsburgh city officials, but Homicide Detective Jackson Channing has his own addiction.

cropped-measure-twice-750-x-1200-jpeg.jpg

Also:

In the Pittsburgh Marathon, more than 18,000 people will participate. 4,500 people will attempt to cover the full 26.2 miles. Over 200 of the participants will quit, realizing it just wasn’t their day. More than 100 will get injured and require medical treatment. One man is going to be murdered.  When Dr. Cyprus Keller lines up to start the race, he knows a man is going to die for one simple reason. He’s going to kill him.

resolve-cover art CL (1)

Finalist – 2014 International Thriller Writers Awards – Best First Novel
Named one of the BEST BOOKS of 2013 by Suspense Magazine!
Top Ten Books of the Year – Authors on the Air

 And look for my short story FOUR DAYS FOREVER in the LEGACY anthology