Zach without Sports

After another week of mixed fantasy results, I wondered: What would my life be without sports? Do I have enough interests outside of sports to interest my small readership? We will find out this week. I’m going to write about everything but sports the next seven days. Yeah, I may make it easy by not posting every day.

Tomorrow, I will wake up early to vote. That’s all I’m going to say about the election.

I initially started this blog to combine my love of sports and writing. I know it’s hard to believe, but most of my writing has nothing at all to do with sports. The first novel I wrote in college did not mention sports once. When I went back and edited the novel, I made the main character a sports reporter and highlighted the other main character’s allegiance to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

I, like most first novelists, based characters on myself. Most writers only do this with one character. I took the serious, Journalism major, somewhat antisocial side and created the female lead Traci. Now that I think about it, the “i” at the end is kind of silly. I took the (former) accounting major side and my outgoing self who only comes out once in a blue moon and created Tom.

On a cool fall night, Tom and Traci are on a date. The date goes fine until a masked man comes out of the bushes and shoots Tom. The rest of the novel is standard thriller boilerplate, with the couple falling in love while a mysterious stranger gets more and more violent until the story is concluded.

I was 20 when I started writing Infatuation. I am now 34. Wondering why you haven’t seen this novel on amazon.com? It hasn’t been published. I made a few feeble attempts at publication, and last year re-worked the book as an attempt at closure. I’ve even written stories about Tom in present day. Traci isn’t with us anymore.

The idea for the first chapter of the book came to me while I was working at a Little Ceasar’s Pizza. I got home late that night and wrote for a couple of hours. I wrote the book during the first semester of my junior year of college. It’s funny that the final part of the book that I wrote was the second chapter, set in a hospital. Now I have plenty of personal experience to flesh that out.

I miss the days when inspiration for book and story ideas seemed to pop up all the time. Now I’m full of life experience but short on “eureka” moments. When I wrote this book, part of the inspiration to continue was that I hadn’t worked out how it was going to end. I wrote longhand on the back of a reporter’s notebook and later transferred the copy to my roommate’s Mac. The benefit of writing longhand the first time was that when I typed the words out later, I could make adjustments on the fly.

I have the 14th anniversary “director’s cut” of the novel on a jump drive. Some day I’m going to serialize it on my web site. Then it will be free, and I can move on to future inspiration.

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