Since the beginning of June I have been working on revising. It's not my strong suit so I decided that while I work on my "baseball" novel, I would read a couple of baseball books to help me see what works and what doesn't. I solicited some book titles and got reading. I read three books, which I hope will help me as I continue revising my own.
The Dreyfuss Affair:A Love Story, by Peter Lefcourt, Smokey O by Celia Cohen, and Playing for First by Chris Paynter gave me three very different looks at writing a book with baseball as a backdrop. The first, is the story of male ballplayers on a fictional major league team who fall in love. If I had to pick the best of the bunch this book would be it. It feels very dated in some ways (it was published in 1992) but that doesn't take away from its charm. I think it highlights how much the world has changed, even if baseball would still be rocked by a couple of teammates dating.
The other two books were shorter, published by small presses, and lesbian. I liked both. They had very different approaches to how much actual baseball made it into the story and I found it really helpful. I am trying to sort out, in my own tory, how much actual baseball I need and how much I should leave out. I am sure there is no "right" answer but sometimes seeing someone else do it well (or not) makes it easier for me to imagine how I should write it.
So this weekend was spent reading a lot and now it's time to dive back into revising. this sucker won't fix itself, will it?