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Saturday, March 21, 2020

A Place Kicker To Be Named & Barbara Kingsolver

By now, even infrequent readers of my blog will have figured out my abiding passions and deduced that sports is not one of them. That has not dissuaded me from periodically pandering to any sports fan who might also peruse the blogosphere. There's little I wouldn't do to attract readers. And with each exquisite metaphor I shamelessly invent to bring sports fans into my ballpark, I grow more desperately hopeful. No reference or groanworthy pun is out of bounds while I grovel.

My best shot (see what I mean?) has always been to entice sports fans by finding common ground. Among other pathetic attempts, I've created an all star basketball team of authors - using the correct position to match literary strength - and I've developed a taxonomy equating baseball batting with quality-of-book equivalents - i.e. home run to looking at three strikes. Of the big three in American sports, the gridiron now beckons. Football fans: I'll trust you to forward this post to Tom Brady. And yes, I do know he's not a place kicker but I still get - ahem - points for knowing Brady's name, right?

For this reading snob, novelists fall broadly into one of three categories akin to the skills of place kickers. In ascending order:

The place kickers who can't be relied even for conversions (I never said I was ignorant of sports, just not a fan) are much like novelists who disappoint more than they deliver, i.e. readers are advised to steer clear of those duffers.

The place kickers who can be relied on to turn six into seven and are good for shorter field goals are much like those novelists who are good for a library drive-by, i.e. readers can do worse if up against the ropes.

The place kickers who are good for those record-breaking field goals - especially when it's fourth and twenty - are much like those novelists who rarely miss, i.e. readers are in very good hands - or should I say, they've got a leg up? - if they choose one of those folks. Since my practice is not to bash or even belittle any author until I finish my own first book, an example is provided only for this top tier - try Barbara Kingsolver, football fans and others. Which author is good for three points at forty five yards nearly every time with you?



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