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DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 08:55 PM
Hello. I am currently starting a novel project about women's tennis, and I want the story to center around one or two girls who are rising up the ranks or one is rising and the other an established pro. I am having issues with the following:

1. Nationality of the girls
2. Playing styles
3. Simulating the women's tennis schedule.

If I could get some input from you guys, lots of fans of tennis, I would greatly appreciate it. The first question is perhaps the most pressing.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:00 PM
Laura Robson...she's gonna be #1... I just know it

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:02 PM
Well, I wouuld prefer not to use real people, but they can be used as models.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:09 PM
Ah...right

Whatabout twins that are seperated at birth and both become tennis players for different countries....they are friends and doubles partners

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:10 PM
That's honestly not a bad idea.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:14 PM
That's honestly not a bad idea.

Obviously they're not identical....;):)

I'll have a think...maybe I can get another angle...or add more too it

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:24 PM
Well, thank you for the suggestions so far.

Becool
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:27 PM
im interested! start now

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:27 PM
You don't want anything too violent or anything like that, do you? Just that I had another idea...

Dodoboy.
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:30 PM
Williams Sisters.

No better story.

Of course dramatising their childhoods in the toughest part of LA.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:35 PM
Whatabout this...there's 2 WTA players who are friends and one of them is dating a top ATP player....now one of them sleeps with him....thinking her friend doesn't know...and when she finds out she goes all bunny boiler and decides to kill her by ....maybe poisoning her drink at a tournament....I know it's a bit CSI but....

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:50 PM
Good ideas. I don't think crime would work as well here in tennis as it would, oh, in figure skating, because there's just so many more competitors everywhere that would be able to notice. And as much as I would love to use the Williams sisters, I just can't do that because anything that I wrote would be considered an unauthorized biography, and I'm trying to solely stay in the land of fiction.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 09:55 PM
No crime? That buggers my other idea then...about a top WTA player whose sister is also a player and kidnapped....and the kidnappers ransom is that her sister....who happens to be in the Wimbledon final, loses the final on purpose

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:00 PM
All of those are very interesting ideas, but I think the main focus is dealing with the pressures of success, as we've clearly seen that a lot of players (Ivanovic, Hantuchova, Kuznetsova, Vaidisova, Myskina) couldn't deal with pressure and how it can precipitate and ruin other aspects of life. Dramatizing that kind of story gives a better response in terms of identifying with a character. It may not be necessarily a "movie" novel full of action or suspense, but the fact remains that a lot of classics are tales of the human experience, and women's tennis' champions have all learned how to deal with it and become great.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:09 PM
All of those are very interesting ideas, but I think the main focus is dealing with the pressures of success, as we've clearly seen that a lot of players (Ivanovic, Hantuchova, Kuznetsova, Vaidisova, Myskina) couldn't deal with pressure and how it can precipitate and ruin other aspects of life. Dramatizing that kind of story gives a better response in terms of identifying with a character. It may not be necessarily a "movie" novel full of action or suspense, but the fact remains that a lot of classics are tales of the human experience, and women's tennis' champions have all learned how to deal with it and become great.

Yeah...but hasn't Navratilova and Seles and a few others had people write those kind of books for them already...I don't mean to throw a dampner on your approach to the story but...I guess you know what you want

sorry I couldn't help

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:12 PM
Yeah...but hasn't Navratilova and Seles and a few others had people write those kind of books for them already...I don't mean to throw a dampner on your approach to the story but...I guess you know what you want

sorry I couldn't help

It's okay, and I mean...how many people read biographies?

And it's not the fact that I can't have any excitement as well. For example, the Rome tournament fire in the hotel and what happened there.

There are ways to put excitement into a story but not to such an extreme. Do you see what angle I'm coming from?

Pat Bateman
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:17 PM
If I were writing a book about tennis, I would make one player American, the other player Russian or Czech. They would have different playing styles (one serve-volleyer,the other a baseliner).

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:20 PM
It's okay, and I mean...how many people read biographies?

And it's not the fact that I can't have any excitement as well. For example, the Rome tournament fire in the hotel and what happened there.

There are ways to put excitement into a story but not to such an extreme. Do you see what angle I'm coming from?

lol I love biographies...

Yeah I know...we don't want McG directing the movie version...:)

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:21 PM
lol I love biographies...

Yeah I know...we don't want McG directing the movie version...:)

Exactly. But, I still need to figure out what country the girl/girls come from.

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:28 PM
Exactly. But, I still need to figure out what country the girl/girls come from.

Is having one of them Iraqi who comes to the USA far fetched...or Cuban/American maybe

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:35 PM
Is having one of them Iraqi who comes to the USA far fetched...or Cuban/American maybe

No, because that's a great political angle and having that kind of drama. Like, poverty and trying situations a la early 90's Russia, mid-late 90's Serbia, Cuba, Iraq, Iran are all great modern stories. Or even Poland. Writing about a French or Caucasian American or Central Europe/Britain where the struggle hasn't been as intense is quite...boring. I can incorporate someone from those regions, but it's so hard to even try and center a character around someone who is from a nation that hasn't forced them to become hungry, you know?

To be continued
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:43 PM
No, because that's a great political angle and having that kind of drama. Like, poverty and trying situations a la early 90's Russia, mid-late 90's Serbia, Cuba, Iraq, Iran are all great modern stories. Or even Poland. Writing about a French or Caucasian American or Central Europe/Britain where the struggle hasn't been as intense is quite...boring. I can incorporate someone from those regions, but it's so hard to even try and center a character around someone who is from a nation that hasn't forced them to become hungry, you know?

But don't most of these young girls end up in a training academy somewhere in Florida from about age 5?

Anyway...I have to go now....I'm onto Law and Order S6 and Claire Kincaid dies...so that's going to upset me...anyway I'll sleep on it and get back to you, maybe by then I'll have something more rational and less extreme...hold on...ZOMBIE tennis players!!!! in bikinis :);)

You're glad I'm going now aren't ya ;) lol

DefyingGravity
Jul 4th, 2009, 10:54 PM
Not quite. I love the input.

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:02 AM
Any more ideas?

miffedmax
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:26 AM
I'm actually shopping a tennis novel with a vampire twist. PM me sometime.

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 12:09 PM
Right, tell me what you think about this idea?

There’s this top WTA player and she becomes gravely ill. She has to attend some top treatment centre, where she meets one of her avid fans. Now the girl who is the fan, she comes from a totally different background, you know, like under-privileged and her friends and family had to raise the cash to send her to this specialist treatment centre/hospital.
Through the adversity of the illness, they become close friends....do you see where I'm going here?

I have a ending for the story, but I'm holding this back. Most likely you think this idea sucks too....

Sam L
Jul 5th, 2009, 12:23 PM
Hello. I am currently starting a novel project about women's tennis, and I want the story to center around one or two girls who are rising up the ranks or one is rising and the other an established pro. I am having issues with the following:

1. Nationality of the girls
2. Playing styles
3. Simulating the women's tennis schedule.

If I could get some input from you guys, lots of fans of tennis, I would greatly appreciate it. The first question is perhaps the most pressing.

I would write about two girls one is a pro rising up the ranks and one is involved behind the scenes on the tour (like marketing or one of those trainers) so their paths are constantly crossing. They may not seem like rivals but things will change... They're friends but not best friends. There is a bit of history between them like they used to go to same high school or something but have never been close. I will make it about the daily grind on the tour, relationships, rivalries, backstabbing etc... With a dark twist at the end.

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 12:28 PM
I'm actually shopping a tennis novel with a vampire twist. PM me sometime.

Elena The Vampire Slayer? No way.....

BuTtErFrEnA
Jul 5th, 2009, 12:30 PM
hmmm interesting...i'll hit you with some ideas :)

BuTtErFrEnA
Jul 5th, 2009, 12:34 PM
Elena The Vampire Slayer? No way.....

no his book would be "Elena The Vampire Slayer With Bangs" ;)

Привет
Jul 5th, 2009, 02:04 PM
Well with the huge amount of Eastern European players on tour at the moment, you could have a character from that region who has been moulded into a fierce competitor and is only focussed on competing and winning. As a result they haven't had the oppurtunity to mature emotionally and have a one track mind. You could have them enter into a relationship with a player and that opens up a whole heap of possibilities, like how they would struggle to connect with someone on a personal level and all that type of stuff.

That's a pretty romantic storyline though, not sure if that'd be of interest to you. :p

You mentioned a couple of things in your first post. I think you should definitely try and simulate the tour as it is now. So that'd mean having characters from places like Russia, Serbia, Czech Republic etc. :lol:

Playing styles is interesting, you could have an older character (like say... Mauresmo :p) who plays a little differently because they're from an older generation. One of their countrywomen could take over the top position from them and steal their limelight. You could have their story centre around their doubts of whether they're good enough to compete anymore, them feeling inadequate and as though they have been replaced, and their uncertainty about their future and what they'll do if they stop playing tennis.

Also, I just had an idea after thinking about the little Polish gang that has formed, with Polish players and players of Polish descent all being friends. You could have two different groups of players who have a rivalry or something... :shrug: :lol:

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 02:30 PM
Well with the huge amount of Eastern European players on tour at the moment, you could have a character from that region who has been moulded into a fierce competitor and is only focussed on competing and winning. As a result they haven't had the oppurtunity to mature emotionally and have a one track mind. You could have them enter into a relationship with a player and that opens up a whole heap of possibilities, like how they would struggle to connect with someone on a personal level and all that type of stuff.

That's a pretty romantic storyline though, not sure if that'd be of interest to you. :p

You mentioned a couple of things in your first post. I think you should definitely try and simulate the tour as it is now. So that'd mean having characters from places like Russia, Serbia, Czech Republic etc. :lol:

Playing styles is interesting, you could have an older character (like say... Mauresmo :p) who plays a little differently because they're from an older generation. One of their countrywomen could take over the top position from them and steal their limelight. You could have their story centre around their doubts of whether they're good enough to compete anymore, them feeling inadequate and as though they have been replaced, and their uncertainty about their future and what they'll do if they stop playing tennis.

Also, I just had an idea after thinking about the little Polish gang that has formed, with Polish players and players of Polish descent all being friends. You could have two different groups of players who have a rivalry or something... :shrug: :lol:

That is a great idea. All of you have wonderful ideas! It's really helping me gather some inspiration from my book, and I definitely have to dedicate it to the fans of the players on tennisforum.com

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 04:22 PM
That is a great idea. All of you have wonderful ideas! It's really helping me gather some inspiration from my book, and I definitely have to dedicate it to the fans of the players on tennisforum.com

And the royalties.....;)

So Disrespectful
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:13 PM
One of the girls could have an underlying rare career and life threatening illness that suddenly flares up early in her 20s. She has an unusual blood type and requires some sort of transplantation that only her sister can provide. The twist is, they don't know they're related and only discover this by chance through random ITF drug testing. She is united with her sister and makes a full recovery, winning the Wimbledon doubles title with her twin.

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:17 PM
One of the girls could have an underlying rare career and life threatening illness that suddenly flares up early in her 20s. She has an unusual blood type and requires some sort of transplantation that only her sister can provide. The twist is, they don't know they're related and only discover this by chance through random ITF drug testing. She is united with her sister and makes a full recovery, winning the Wimbledon doubles title with her twin.

That is so cute! I like that a lot definitely. It's a good plot.

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:24 PM
That is so cute! I like that a lot definitely. It's a good plot.

That sounds like most of my ideas…talk about plagiarism...

Fuck that! I'm telling you no more...

jubliant11
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:25 PM
Do a story like Hingis. Young prodigy on top of the world and then falls.

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 05:45 PM
That sounds like most of my ideas…talk about plagiarism...

Fuck that! I'm telling you no more...

I'm sorry that you feel that way. I've said this a few times. All of your ideas are wonderful, and they're giving me lots of inspiration. I just have to take all of this in and eventually go on my own path, but just seeing what people would like to see in a women's tennis story is quite remarkable.

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 06:00 PM
I'm sorry that you feel that way. I've said this a few times. All of your ideas are wonderful, and they're giving me lots of inspiration. I just have to take all of this in and eventually go on my own path, but just seeing what people would like to see in a women's tennis story is quite remarkable.

Sorry, I’m alright now. It’s just, I’d to see the doctor on Friday and she prescribed different medication, which I’d forgotten to take because I was busy watching the Men’s final…

Everything's fine, I'm back on track again...

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 06:53 PM
That's good!

To be continued
Jul 5th, 2009, 07:06 PM
Here’s a idea.

What about, a player who has a car accident and she's disfigured but not enough to stop her competing on the tour. Now she comes up against many obstacles along the way (like her many endorsements she had) her sponsors want to drop her, she was very attractive before the accident but, now they want to dump her. And how she deals with the problems, emotionally and psychically…

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 07:42 PM
Ooh, that's rough!

miffedmax
Jul 5th, 2009, 09:19 PM
Here’s a idea.

What about, a player who has a car accident and she's disfigured but not enough to stop her competing on the tour. Now she comes up against many obstacles along the way (like her many endorsements she had) her sponsors want to drop her, she was very attractive before the accident but, now they want to dump her. And how she deals with the problems, emotionally and psychically…

Nikki Laudina?

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 10:16 PM
Again, I thank you guys for the ideas. But now, it's up to me to come up with my own idea using your input on what you'd like to see as an inspiration.

MaBaker
Jul 5th, 2009, 10:24 PM
Write about a player who : has a memory of a goldfish ,likes to change her underwear on the court, whines all the time, has mental issues, has ridiculously fast serve (50mph), likes to talk about her period in the pressers, spends 2/3 of a match watching herself on a jumbotron, needs a helicopter to get on a court...
Make her a No.1, but don't give her any slams. She has to be the worst no.1 in the history of all histories. The end of the book should be tragic : She's playing the slam final and needs only one point to win. She's preparing to serve, but suddenly, a meteor hits her in the head and her opponent (you can name her Resena) wins her 49th slam title by retirement.

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 10:28 PM
That's so funny. No satire at all...

miffedmax
Jul 5th, 2009, 10:45 PM
Write it about a sweet natured girl who goes everywhere with her mother. She meets a handsome tennis player, but can't date him because she shares her hotel room with her mother. She is offered performance enhancing drugs, but can't figure out how to take them without her mother finding out. She wants to go to the big ball, but can't because she can't leave her mother alone.

No, never mind. This would be the most boring book in the world.

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 11:03 PM
Lol. I think I've got a plot finally. Does anyone care to listen to it?

RFSTB
Jul 5th, 2009, 11:05 PM
An American and a Russian.

BFFs until they found out they're in love with the same top ATP player, a Swede.:lol: Everytime they meet after that, it's death.

The American is a baseline player, big and powerful, but doesn't think enough. Trained by mom.

The Russian is a tactician, slices and dices, but thinks too much (a.k.a. "headcase"). Trained by dad.

The mom and dad coaches are ex-players, used to date, then broke up, now hate each other's guts(or so they thought;)).

DefyingGravity
Jul 5th, 2009, 11:12 PM
Lol. Good storyline!

Corswandt
Jul 6th, 2009, 12:17 AM
It doesn't have to be present day, does it?

How about this:

The year is 1936.

Katalin - a dashing Hungarian aristocrat, a free spirit who chooses to become a pro tennis player to earn her independence and avoid an arranged marriage, and who is thus ostracized by her own family and peers.

Andrée - an immensely talented but insecure French player who is making her very first steps on the game. She always looked up to her elder brother, a Communist who eventually left home to fight for his beliefs.

Katalin and Andrée don't know each other yet. But when they arrive at a big tournament held in Germany, they end up teaming up for doubles by chance because all other teams were already set.

Katalin, one of the most charismatic personalities in the game, speaks out on Hitler's anti-semitic policies and is consequently blacklisted. In the 2R, the brave Hungarian is unfairly defaulted. Out of the singles, she remains in the tournament to play doubles with Andrée. The German authorities dare not disqualify the team as it could lead to a diplomatic incident with France.

Later that day, Katalin returns to her hotel room to find it searched and trashed. She is constantly threatened, but finds the strength and focus to pull her teammate onwards to the big final.

The morning before the final, Katalin doesn't show up for her practice session. Desperate, Andrée asks around for her whereabouts, but everyone seems reluctant to answer her questions. She finally tracks Katalin - to the Gestapo HQ, just in time to see her get dumped on to the sidewalk after a grueling interrogation - shaken, but unbowed and more determined than ever.

Further drama as Katalin and Andrée are set to take the court - Andrée learns that her brother has been seriously wounded fighting with the International Brigades in the defense of Madrid. She is handed his last letter, which closes with No pasarán!.

On the other side of the net, the Bernhard sisters. Born in the direst poverty in Upper Silesia, their huge tennis talent was the way they found to earn a living. Unaware of politics, and reluctantly transformed by the regime into poster girls for Aryan supremacy due to their Nordic looks, they are disgusted with the tournament organizers' treatment of Katalin but are too scared to raise their voices in her support.

Can Katalin and Andrée beat the Bernhard sisters?

CAN TEAM FREEDOM PREVAIL?

Corswandt
Jul 6th, 2009, 12:19 AM
The above was inspired by

http://www.amazon.com/Terrible-Splendor-Extraordinary-Poised-Greatest/dp/0307393941

Привет
Jul 6th, 2009, 12:33 AM
Have a character busted for drugs ala Gasquet! :D It can be about their breakdown and fall from grace. :rolls:

DefyingGravity
Jul 6th, 2009, 01:41 AM
That's really funny.

Horizon
Jul 6th, 2009, 01:50 AM
That sounds like most of my ideas…talk about plagiarism...

Fuck that! I'm telling you no more...
:spit:

He's asking for ideas, it's not a competition :kiss:




Anyway I think you are going down a lot of cliché routes with the whole twin thing, terminal illnesses, reuniting with a long lost family members etc, just my opinion.

DefyingGravity
Jul 6th, 2009, 02:06 AM
Yeah, I don't want to play on the Williams sisters, but tennis is one of those sports where anything you can write about in fiction, it's already been done in real life. BUT, no one really has been able to look inside a player during those times.

I think I'm going to base this story on the Ana Ivanovic story somewhat. An Eastern European girl who has always been good gets fit and everything happens so fast and finds herself number one, but then buckles under the pressure. I'll probably use a few years to show the rise and fall and comeback.

Corswandt
Jul 6th, 2009, 09:50 AM
I think I'm going to base this story on the Ana Ivanovic story somewhat. An Eastern European girl who has always been good gets fit and everything happens so fast and finds herself number one, but then buckles under the pressure. I'll probably use a few years to show the rise and fall and comeback.

Lame.

Cora
Jul 6th, 2009, 01:36 PM
Write about a tennis player, about her life before the World War and after that. How she couldn´t play while war and etc. Why only modern stories? ;)

DefyingGravity
Jul 6th, 2009, 01:44 PM
I only have the best knowledge of how I live now. As much as writing about different time periods sounds so amazing...I don't nearly have enough knowledge, and the countless sources and what not to go through may take me years!!!!! And then to finally write the story 0.o

Corswandt
Jul 6th, 2009, 02:03 PM
I only have the best knowledge of how I live now. As much as writing about different time periods sounds so amazing...I don't nearly have enough knowledge, and the countless sources and what not to go through may take me years!!!!! And then to finally write the story 0.o

http://it-werkz.com/books/images/453f.jpg

And this would probably amount to more "research" than the overwhelming majority of novelists bothers doing these days.

DefyingGravity
Jul 6th, 2009, 02:04 PM
I refuse to use such horribly written reference. It's like Wikipedia...only use it for common knowledge.

Brena
Jul 6th, 2009, 06:58 PM
Well with the huge amount of Eastern European players on tour at the moment, you could have a character from that region who has been moulded into a fierce competitor and is only focussed on competing and winning. As a result they haven't had the oppurtunity to mature emotionally and have a one track mind. You could have them enter into a relationship with a player and that opens up a whole heap of possibilities, like how they would struggle to connect with someone on a personal level and all that type of stuff.

That's a pretty romantic storyline though, not sure if that'd be of interest to you. :p

You mentioned a couple of things in your first post. I think you should definitely try and simulate the tour as it is now. So that'd mean having characters from places like Russia, Serbia, Czech Republic etc. :lol:

Playing styles is interesting, you could have an older character (like say... Mauresmo :p) who plays a little differently because they're from an older generation. One of their countrywomen could take over the top position from them and steal their limelight. You could have their story centre around their doubts of whether they're good enough to compete anymore, them feeling inadequate and as though they have been replaced, and their uncertainty about their future and what they'll do if they stop playing tennis.

Also, I just had an idea after thinking about the little Polish gang that has formed, with Polish players and players of Polish descent all being friends. You could have two different groups of players who have a rivalry or something... :shrug: :lol:

I'm not sure if it's any help - but Serbia/ Yugoslavia has never been an Eastern European country in either geographical or ideological sense (Yugoslavia was never part of the Eastern Block, but the founder of the Non-Aligned Movement). It differed from the East European countries in that it was open to Western influences and culture and considered the US instead of the USSR its friend (:tape:).

DefyingGravity
Jul 6th, 2009, 10:46 PM
Well, I actually have come up with my story. Does anyone want to hear how it goes?

To be continued
Jul 7th, 2009, 07:39 PM
Well, I actually have come up with my story. Does anyone want to hear how it goes?

No....

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 08:30 PM
No....

But you guys helped shape it!

To be continued
Jul 7th, 2009, 08:34 PM
But you guys helped shape it!

:lol: You know we can't wait to hear what idea you have (even if none of our ideas are in it)

Now, stop playing hard to get....:)

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:19 PM
Okay, well...it's a story about two pros

1. Diana Gryzbowski from Poland: She's a 17 year old up and comer who plays similar to Kim Clijsters. Her father was a footballer in his time and her mother a school teacher, so she's also got a bit of brain to her. She's been touted as the next big thing for Polish tennis, and she starts to get big results at sixteen, reaching the third round of Roland Garros and the fourth round of the U.S. Open as well as taking the Moscow title. Now her ranking going into the year when the story begins is around 14-16 and everyone is looking for her to break through and win another big title and reach the quarters of a slam. She's become the poster girl for her clothing company and the pressure begins to build.

2. Stephanie Lemarc from France : She was a former Grand Slam champion at Wimbledon and a former number one, but now her ranking is hovering in the twenties, which isn't where she shouldn't be but after a lot of hardship in her life, she hasn't quite felt the same verve to go out and play. She plays more like a Mauresmo.


Diana and Stephanie meet each other in the third round of the Australian Open, and even though Diana wins, it's a much more difficult match than it should have been. Stephanie sees a lot of potential in Diana but notices that she's not exactly dealing with in-match and out of match pressure well. She remains in contact with her and eventually the two become doubles partners. Stephanie learns that Diana has had to deal with a lot of problems at home, including her dad's iron fisted control over her life. She eventually coaxes her to get a new coach and entourage, and offers up her home as a refuge for the girl. Diana's career takes off in quite a hurry during the clay season and she triumphs at Roland Garros, but after her big win, her father seeks her out in Stephanie's house and drags her away from her best friend and she shows up to Wimbledon with welts well hidden. She's crying on court and she's an emotional wreck as her father is in the stands and she loses second round as the 3rd seed. Her father is also quoted as calling Diana a lesbian (which she isn't) and a father's worst nightmare as a daughter. Stephanie and Diana don't get to see each other until the U.S. Open, and Diana is a wreck, a walking skeleton and she reveals to Stephanie that she had gone anorexic in light of her father's harsh words and she and him became estranged and never spoke to each other after Wimbledon. Diana's ranking tumbles and Stephanie watches as her friend questions whether she should be in tennis anymore. Stephanie wills her on and retires as a player to coach Diana. She gets her back to where she belongs, and the story ends at the Roland Garros final two years from when she won the event.

To be continued
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:26 PM
Okay, well...it's a story about two pros

1. Diana Gryzbowski from Poland: She's a 17 year old up and comer who plays similar to Kim Clijsters. Her father was a footballer in his time and her mother a school teacher, so she's also got a bit of brain to her. She's been touted as the next big thing for Polish tennis, and she starts to get big results at sixteen, reaching the third round of Roland Garros and the fourth round of the U.S. Open as well as taking the Moscow title. Now her ranking going into the year when the story begins is around 14-16 and everyone is looking for her to break through and win another big title and reach the quarters of a slam. She's become the poster girl for her clothing company and the pressure begins to build.

2. Stephanie Lemarc from France : She was a former Grand Slam champion at Wimbledon and a former number one, but now her ranking is hovering in the twenties, which isn't where she shouldn't be but after a lot of hardship in her life, she hasn't quite felt the same verve to go out and play. She plays more like a Mauresmo.


Diana and Stephanie meet each other in the third round of the Australian Open, and even though Diana wins, it's a much more difficult match than it should have been. Stephanie sees a lot of potential in Diana but notices that she's not exactly dealing with in-match and out of match pressure well. She remains in contact with her and eventually the two become doubles partners. Stephanie learns that Diana has had to deal with a lot of problems at home, including her dad's iron fisted control over her life. She eventually coaxes her to get a new coach and entourage, and offers up her home as a refuge for the girl. Diana's career takes off in quite a hurry during the clay season and she triumphs at Roland Garros, but after her big win, her father seeks her out in Stephanie's house and drags her away from her best friend and she shows up to Wimbledon with welts well hidden. She's crying on court and she's an emotional wreck as her father is in the stands and she loses second round as the 3rd seed. Her father is also quoted as calling Diana a lesbian (which she isn't) and a father's worst nightmare as a daughter. Stephanie and Diana don't get to see each other until the U.S. Open, and Diana is a wreck, a walking skeleton and she reveals to Stephanie that she had gone anorexic in light of her father's harsh words and she and him became estranged and never spoke to each other after Wimbledon. Diana's ranking tumbles and Stephanie watches as her friend questions whether she should be in tennis anymore. Stephanie wills her on and retires as a player to coach Diana. She gets her back to where she belongs, and the story ends at the Roland Garros final two years from when she won the event.

Now this is only my humble opinion

You seem to be writing your book mainly for tennis fans. Anybody who’s not a fan of tennis, won’t really be interested in this story. I’m not trying to throw a spanner in the works, I’m just giving you my opinion, hey, what do I know? Very little...

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:32 PM
It's just my opinion but...

When I read, people identify with real emotions. We read stories about kings, doctors, and 18th century factor workers. Do we do these things...no.

Hell...I've read good books about sports before, and they've had plots surrounded by the sport, but the emotion that the characters have can be magnified by the demands. I feel as though that is appealing in its own right. The price of fame and domestic troubles...that's what a lot of good movies are essentially. That's my opinion as well.

V-MAC
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:47 PM
I absolutely agree. I mean nice ideas but you are really limiting your audience with that as it is just too tennis heavy and dare I say, a little too cliched with the whole "rags-to-riches" and "overcoming obstacles to reach the top" that could be copy and pasted from any sports story. I think you should look for a more commercial story, maybe go for something that is really light-hearted in tone, like a ridiculously ott story that focuses on locker room catfights and general wta bitchy behaviour that we have all grown to become fond of from the wta:lol: As it is pure fiction, you could completely over-exaggerate the behaviour for ultimate comic effect. You could base it in some tennis academy where all these girls are in fierce competition with each other, very Mean Girls I know but this is just one idea where you could give your tennis story wider appeal. Of course, maybe writing with humour isn't your preferred style.
Btw, sorry for just barging in here but as a fellow creative writer, I thought I'd just offer my thoughts:) I'll try and think of more ideas.

To be continued
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:48 PM
It's just my opinion but...

When I read, people identify with real emotions. We read stories about kings, doctors, and 18th century factor workers. Do we do these things...no.

Hell...I've read good books about sports before, and they've had plots surrounded by the sport, but the emotion that the characters have can be magnified by the demands. I feel as though that is appealing in its own right. The price of fame and domestic troubles...that's what a lot of good movies are essentially. That's my opinion as well.

Fair enough....I was going to post something else, but I'll refrain. It'll just start coming across as 'I say, You say' and will feel like I'm trying to screw around when I'm not....if I PM you my e-mail address, will you post me what you write?

miffedmax
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:49 PM
A lot of it depends on who your market is. YA sports books are less dependent on a big hook. If you're wanting to sell a book for an adult reader, you're going to have to come up with something that will grab the editor/agent in the first two or three pages, because that's all most of them are going to read. (I've only sold a few short stories, but I have friends who have sold several novels and/or screenplays).

The friendship/rivalry between the girls--if you want to make it a YA--would be better if they were a little younger, and maybe set it at a tennis academy where Diana has rules the roost and is set to be the next big thing, until Stephanie comes along. The abuse issue can come in later, but be very powerful and interesting, with Stephanie trying to cover it up, but dreading dad coming on the weekends, etc. I'd also make one of them an American. It might be interesting if Stephanie's family was really wealthy--there's still a perception that upper middle class people don't abuse their kids, and the revelation might come as a shock. It might also--even thought it's a bit worn--help build tension if Diana is there on a scholarship and sees tennis as her only way out.

Thinking about YA, especially girls, they want to read about characters who are a little older than they are, but also somebody they can relate to. Most kids who might pick up this book in the US are probably going to be ZAT and Champ players who's goal in the immediate future is to be able to go to an academy. The leap to being the next Rena or Lena is one they dream about, but they're probably a little embarrassed because they know it's unlikely. On the other hand, they probably know of at least one kid from their club, or camp, or even tournaments they've played in who's headed off to an academy (even if only for a summer program), is old enough to be interested in boys (or girls, and don't be afraid to acknowledge that even in a book for younger readers).

There just aren't many good sports novels pitched at adult readers. There are a lot of good ones pitched at kids. (Even though he doesn't write about tennis, read some Matt Christopher--it's mostly team sports stuff for boys, but he's really good, if you haven't read him). You might be able to make this work as an adult novel, but the themes and characters to me sound more like they'd be great for YA.

(That's not meant to be condescending--I'm working on a YA novel myself right now, and most of the short fiction I had published eons ago was for YA, so I'm come to praise, not to bury it).

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:49 PM
It's okay. I like ideas. And since not a word has been written yet, I can add certain aspects in.

As the "Mean Girls" type deal, it goes very well with the WTA, and no doubt there'd be some rumor spreading and bitchy behavior. The other idea I had was taking a Bridget Jones' Diary approach and just writing it from the perspective of someone who is a new starlet but has never been in the elite of the WTA before.

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:51 PM
Thanks guys! Keep giving it back at me! I really don't mind even the harshest criticism! After all, I'm going into a subjective business.

miffedmax
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:53 PM
A tennis bitch-fest might be fun, but unless you have a great hook, or have some kind of expertise you can push (were on the tour or covered it) it's going to be an uphill slog to get attention from an agent or editor. I mean like a doubles player catching her partner with another player, and not on the court, or something sleazy like that...

To be continued
Jul 7th, 2009, 09:55 PM
I absolutely agree. I mean nice ideas but you are really limiting your audience with that as it is just too tennis heavy and dare I say, a little too cliched with the whole "rags-to-riches" and "overcoming obstacles to reach the top" that could be copy and pasted from any sports story. I think you should look for a more commercial story, maybe go for something that is really light-hearted in tone, like a ridiculously ott story that focuses on locker room catfights and general wta bitchy behaviour that we have all grown to become fond of from the wta:lol: As it is pure fiction, you could completely over-exaggerate the behaviour for ultimate comic effect. You could base it in some tennis academy where all these girls are in fierce competition with each other, very Mean Girls I know but this is just one idea where you could give your tennis story wider appeal. Of course, maybe writing with humour isn't your preferred style.
Btw, sorry for just barging in here but as a fellow creative writer, I thought I'd just offer my thoughts:) I'll try and think of more ideas.

Drop Shot Gorgeous....

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 10:00 PM
I do admit, it's a good idea!

DefyingGravity
Jul 7th, 2009, 10:01 PM
:lol: at Drop Shot Gorgeous.