Not a Date #WritingChallenge

Week 49! Only three weeks left! WOOT! 😉😄

Felicia Denise, Author

Not a Date- meatloaf

52-Week Writing Challenge: Week 49
This is another excerpt of my WIP, Sacrificial Daughter, currently at 69K. Ana is having dinner with a sheriff’s deputy and former “schoolmate.”

Murphy’s Family Restaurant topped Corwin’s annual food listing of favorite places to eat.

It wasn’t gourmet fare, secret recipes, or old family recipes which brought the crowds in, but the folksy, down-to-earth atmosphere found there 6 am to 9 pm seven days a week.

Third generation owner, Joe Murphy, welcomed every patron who walked through the door, and if he wasn’t available, his wife, Silvia, did.

Joe, Silvia, and the wait staff would have rolling conversations and included patrons. Topics were light, easy and fun. It wasn’t unusual for calls to come in inquiring not about the daily special, but what was the current topic of the day.

Analeigh Sellers pulled into Murphy’s parking lot at five minutes to six. Exiting her…

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Fibromyalgia and Teens

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Kids and teens get sick just like we do, and usually, it’s very easy to find out why they got sick.  It can be something as simple as a sore throat or an infection, which are easy to diagnose and treat.

However, what many people don’t realize is that fibromyalgia can develop in children and teens especially as well.  Common symptoms of fibromyalgia include excessive tiredness and fatigue, aching throughout the body and especially in the muscles and the joints, and difficulty sleeping.

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia

It’s essential that if your teen is feeling the symptoms of fibromyalgia that you consult with your doctor.  The problem is that not very many doctors understand what fibromyalgia is or how to treat it very well.

You may have to expand your search to find a doctor or medical professional who understands fibromyalgia and hopefully has experience diagnosing and treating it in the past.  Fortunately, it is much easier to find a doctor who understands fibromyalgia now than it was before.

Fibromyalgia is also harder to find in children because it is much more common in adults.  The age of 18 is usually the youngest age that a person can be diagnosed with fibromyalgia, but unfortunately, that figure is slipping away, as now as much as five percent of teenagers in the United States are estimated to either display some symptoms of fibromyalgia or be diagnosed with it all together.  So, let’s say that you have a teenager who is displaying strong symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Maybe your teenager has even been diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  So the next question is, what causes fibromyalgia in teens, and what can you do about it?  Fortunately, there is much that you can do.

What causes Fibromyalgia in Teens?

Well, we don’t exactly know what causes fibromyalgia in adults, so as you might guess, we also don’t exactly know what causes fibromyalgia in teens, either. Although no specific gene has been identified yet, it has been discovered that fibromyalgia does run in the family, meaning that a person who has a related family member who was diagnosed with fibromyalgia is more likely to be diagnosed with it themselves over a person who has no family history of diagnosed fibromyalgia.

So if your teen has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, ask yourself if anyone else in the family has.  Not just your or our spouse or your other children, but anyone in your extended family. If so, then it’s understandable for why your teen has developed fibromyalgia (though it’s still rare to at such a young age), but if your family has no history of fibromyalgia, then it’s definitely a very rare occurrence that your teen has been diagnosed.

We also know that more girls than boys have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia in the past, so a teenage girl being diagnosed with fibromyalgia is more likely than a teenage boy as well.

The Symptoms of Fibromyalgia in Teens

The symptoms of fibromyalgia in teens are largely the same as in adults. The most common symptoms of fibromyalgia are fatigue, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, depression, constant headaches, dizziness, constant stomach aches, soreness, achiness and pain throughout the body especially in the muscles and joints, and more difficulty remembering things.

As with adults, fibromyalgia is difficult in teens. When a teenager is diagnosed with fibromyalgia, they will have immense difficulty sleeping at night due to the pain.  When they can’t sleep, they will only feel more tired and fatigued during the day, which only makes the pain worse.  So in this sense, the symptoms of fibromyalgia essentially work with one another.

It’s very important that you find treatment for your teen if they are diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  Many teens will miss many days at school, which can affect their grades and their entire future (maybe their dream is to get into a college that holds high standards, but they miss an important lecture and fail the next test, leading to a B in the class when they could have had an A that the college would have accepted).

And if other teens in the school find out that your teen has fibromyalgia, your teen may rapidly become unpopular and become socially isolated and may lose friends.  So not only does fibromyalgia affect a teen medically, it also affects their work/school performance and their friends.

Treating Fibromyalgia

There are many different people who you can consult with if your teen is diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  You should consult a doctor who has experience and knowledge in the area of fibromyalgia, a psychologist, and a physical therapist.

There is currently no cure for fibromyalgia for anybody, unfortunately.  However, there are still many treatments that you can have your teen use to lessen the pain and symptoms as much as possible. First of all, your teen will need to learn how to cope with the pain.

You can try using cognitive behavioral therapy, which helps teens relieve their depression or anxiety they feel because of the pain.  You should also try muscle relaxation techniques, and breathe deeply to get the stress out for the time being.

You can also try using pain reliever medications to lessen the pain, but you should only use ones that are prescribed to you by your doctor and that don’t have any dangerous side effects.  You should also keep in mind that there are very few studies regarding medication and fibromyalgia in teens, so use caution.

Good exercise and physical therapy would never hurt either. Getting enough exercise is essential to anyone who is dealing with fibromyalgia. Just set aside anywhere from thirty minutes to an hour each day of exercise, and you will find less pain and less depression. The good thing about physical therapy is that the therapist can show your teen the best exercises to use in regard to fibromyalgia, and how often to use them, why they should be used, etc.


The preceding article is from and posted here for sharing purposes only. For additional information, please visit their website or consult your personal physician.

“Penchant for Vengeance” by Robert Downs #Excerpt #2

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Title: Penchant for VengeancePenchant for Vengeance cover

Author: Robert Downs

Genre: Mystery

Charlottesville, Virginia, Police Detective Luke McGinty has a closet filled with demons, along with a few skeletons; a steady job, but no steady partner or girlfriend; and is still married to his wife Sallie, even though she’s been dead for three years. Then his detective work takes a turn for the worse when a body is discovered at the downtown mall. One dead body isn’t enough, though, and another one turns up. When ties to a cold murder case in another county present themselves, Luke realizes that, if he doesn’t tread carefully, he could end up short more than just a few answers…

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Excerpt #2

The body was bent like a pretzel. Wounds that were possibly from a knife or a whip slathered the body from the neck to the pubic region, deep enough to resemble tattoos. Some were spaced closely enough to disfigure the top half of the body, rendering an exact age nearly impossible. A crime of passion entered the forefront of my mind, and it clung to the roof of my mouth. The victim probably knew his killer intimately, or was, at the very least, an acquaintance.

The wounds stood out for me: a multitude of lacerations that made me unable to look away. When I scanned below the belt, I noticed the mutilated genitalia, rendering the man much less of one. I didn’t like the look of the scene, with the body splayed at an obscene angle, dropped right outside the glass front doors of Regal Cinema to render two of the doors nearly impassable. It resembled something. I just wasn’t sure what. I’d probably blocked it out of my mind, being that I frequented this particular cinema and watched more movies than I cared to admit.

I hoped it never came back, the thought I had blocked. It always did in the end. That was what hurt the most: Movies exacerbated the oddities of life.

Killers were usually born not made, but sometimes, it was the other way around.

The victim’s hands were positioned above his head, forming a triangle, as if he prayed in death to some higher power. Positioned that way by the killer, his hands rubbed up against each other, his head tilted slightly upward. The wounds to the victim’s hands told me he had put up a struggle, knowing that death was inevitable, yet he had wanted to live all the way to the end. But it wasn’t enough. It often never was.

The lack of blood told me the victim wasn’t killed here, and other than a nude body covered in wounds and dried blood, like strokes from a brush, with his hands pointed toward the sky, there were no other obvious signatures. His head was shaved with only a small area of stubble on his chin. His height and weight fell in the average region, his eyes were black, and his lips formed a permanent grimace. He had defensive wounds on both his wrists and the back of his hands, and his skin was as white as a first-floor apartment.

“Who’s the victim?” I asked.

“Victim’s name is unknown, until we run some tests,” the ME said. “Other than being male, and probably between thirty-five and forty years old, I’m out of guesses.”

Addie Ferguson, the ME, had a knack for guessing ages, along with her serious attention to detail. A short woman, with a few extra pounds she could never seem to get rid of, she preferred ankle-length skirts, black boots, and blue blouses.

“Have we got a time of death?”

~ Author Bio ~

Robert DownsRobert Downs aspired to be a writer before he realized how difficult the writing process was. Fortunately, he’d already fallen in love with the craft, otherwise, his stories might never have seen print. Originally from West Virginia, he has lived in Virginia, Massachusetts, New Mexico, and now resides in California. When he’s not writing, Downs can be found reviewing, blogging, or smiling. To find out more about his latest projects, or to reach out to him on the Internet, visit the author’s website: PENCHANT FOR VENGEANCE is his fifth novel.


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~ Giveaway ~

Robert Downs is sponsoring a giveaway for 2 paperbacks and 2 eBook copies of Penchant for Vengeance.


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