Dig through your couch cushions, your purse, or the floor of your car and look at the year printed on the first coin you find. What were you doing that year?
My second novel, The Summer of ’62 was semiautobiographical. Events that took place over three years were condensed into one summer. Three or four characters were molded into one.
My son read the book with that understanding alone. He called me after reading a chapter and said, “Dad, you did that!”
“No,” I said. “That was all fiction.”
We discussed more of the events in the novel; which ones took place in ’62 and the ones that didn’t. We concluded that nearly all took place in that summer and there were some things that actually occurred, but not included.
“Wow! That must have been quite a summer,” he said.
“You betcha,” I said.
I wrote a sequel to The Summer of ’62, but it has not been published.
The logical title would be The Fall of ’62. ’Wait a minute!’ I thought. “Is that all I’m ever going to write about; 1962?’ So I set the manuscript aside (stored it on disk), with the idea of giving it some thought. Well after a while I reasoned ’it is what it is’ and just opted for another title; The Id and Odyssey.
Well last year I finished it. It was fiction based upon actual events. It was a novel about baseball. It was based on the premise of baseball’s worst team actually being the best.
The first year of the New York Mets nearly all the players were cast-offs from other teams. A friend and I wondered what if those players selected in the expansion draft by the Mets had the best year of their careers?
My friend played a baseball game based on statistics and probability (APBA). We were able to take the best years from each player’s past and play them the first year of the New York Mets. Thus, the first year they played for the Mets was their best year ever as a player rather than the worst.
I played the entire season with the statistics of players from their best years. That year was fictionalized and made into a book.
What was I to name it? Well I changed the name of the team from the Mets to the Sewer Rats. The reason is a part of the story. Hmm, what was the first year of the Mets? It was 1962. So another novel based on 1962; The 1962 New York Sewer Rats – Baseball’s Greatest Story!
All I can say is that it was a heckuva year.
I have another book idea; what if the United States went to war with the Soviet Union over the Cuban missile crises? Wasn’t that 1962 also? Just sayin’.
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