Wednesday, December 08, 2010
I love life. I have a wonderful family, and we live in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. I am a sports humor columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and started writing for newspapers at age 13. Writing has been a major part of my life. I love reading and writing good stories.
One of my grandsons is a blog sports writer for several of the local teams. Tell us about your family.
My wife, Sally, is Office Manager for a financial planner. With as shaky as the newspaper industry has been the past few years, we joke that she has the secure job in the family. We have a daughter who is 12 and a son who is 10. Our daughter plays sports -- she’s playing select volleyball at the moment -- and is a cheerleader. Our son plays whatever sport is in season, plus a few that are out of season. He always has some type of ball within reach. We spend a good deal of time at games and practices, but we believe sports when done the right way can teach valuable lessons for all aspects of life.
My mom and my brother and his family are nearby. My dad passed away in August. In the hospital before he passed, he was able to hold a copy of the book. That was a special moment because he was the one who set things up for me to start writing for the local newspaper when I was in junior high.
Have you written other nonfiction books?
No, Remember Why You Play is my first.
Do you have any other books in the works right now?
Yes, I just signed on to ghostwrite a memoir. There’s not much I can say about the book at this stage in the process, but it will be inspirational and high impact like Remember Why You Play. This one, however, is not sports-related.
Be sure and contact me when there is a pub date. I'd love to feature it on the blog. What kinds of hobbies and leisure activities do you enjoy?
Why did you write the featured book?
I believe we tend to take sports too seriously at times, but I still feel there is much we can gain from sports. I came across a high school football program that does things the right way, and I wanted to write a Friday Night Lights for Christians, if you will. The school is Faith Christian School in Grapevine, Texas, and it made national news a couple of years ago when it treated a team from a prison school as the home team for a game. It is a very touching story.
I had already followed the Faith football program around for an entire season when that game occurred. I also happened to be at that now-famous game and wrote about it for our newspaper. The story spread from there, went global because of the Internet, and is being made into a major motion picture called One Heart for release late in 2011.
When the game received so much publicity, one of the questions often asked was, “How did they come up with this idea?” Well, I was already working on that answer in the book I was writing. All I had to do was add in this inspirational game as an example of the way they use sports to make a positive difference in people’s lives.
Remember Why You Play demonstrates not only what kind of platform football offers, but also goes far beyond football and demonstrates the power of compassion, the impact one kind deed can make, and just how much good God can unleash when one person is obedient to what God places in his heart.
We have friends whose children have participated in sports at Faith Christian School. That's why the story caught my eye. What do you want the reader to take away from the book?
That every one of us has the ability to be a difference-maker, and that there are opportunities all around us every day if we can learn to view people the way that God views them.
One of the encouraging things to come from the early reviews is the number of non-sports fans and marginal sports fans who find takeaway value in the book. In fact, the very first e-mail I received was from a mother who read the book in one sitting and said she instantly began applying principles from the book to her parenting. That is exactly the type of reaction that the publisher (Tyndale House) and I hoped we would receive with a book that has a football field on the cover.
Where on the Internet can the readers find you?
The book’s web site is http://www.rememberwhyyouplay.com/. The Introduction and Chapter 1 are available there. Facebookers can find the book’s page by searching for Remember Why You Play. I have links to a variety of reviews there. I’m on Twitter @DavidThomas14. And for those who like sports humor, my columns are posted at www.star-telegram.com/300. Anyone with questions or comments about the book can e-mail me at RWYPbook@gmail.com. I enjoy receiving feedback and answering questions about the book.
Thank you, David, for spending this time with us.
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