How It All Started

I’m being asked how I decided to write “The Calm Before the Storm.” My life consists of many moving parts. I have three kids involved in various activities, as well as several businesses that I help keep organized. I am an accountant by trade. When not in the car chauffeuring my children to baseball, lacrosse or basketball and cheering them on in their games, I am paying bills, running payroll or doing financial analysis. Exciting stuff, right? It was the summer of 2012, en route to pick up my son from a week at Ripken Baseball Camp, that I had my epiphany. I had just finished reading one of the many trilogies to hit the market. Truly, in an “ah-ha” moment, I thought what better sequence of events for a trilogy than the Triple Crown of horse racing: the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes. My hands on the steering wheel started to sweat. Could I do it? Could I become someone new? I had defined myself as a numbers person for 25 years. Could I be a writer? I would be venturing into an area I knew nothing about. Scary. I mulled this new idea in my head the entire two-hour drive to Aberdeen, Maryland. I put it aside as I watched my son pitch in his final game of the camp, and smiled at him from afar, cheering him on. So many hats to wear. Did I want to add another one? Several weeks went by and I couldn’t shake my idea. Over the course of two years, I spent my hours in the SUV in between pickups and drop-offs, building my storyline, developing scenes. Occasionally I would sit down with my iPad and type out what was in my head. In the spring of 2014, when I finally decided to download my notes and writings into a word document, I found I had “jotted down” close to 20,000 words! My story was born. Urged on by several people, I spent the summer of 2014 building out the rest of the story. The result is a story of close to 75,000 words about a horse and the woman who loves him. Perseverance, determination, courage, the words I use to describe the characters in my book, can also be used to describe the writing of this book. The research that went into the book increased my love for Thoroughbred horses and horse racing even more. The people I have had the opportunity to meet along the way have all played a big part in the final product. This weekend is the big event — the release of “The Calm Before the Storm.” I can’t hide behind my computer screen anymore. I have laid my soul bare in the words of my book. Will you like it? I can’t solve that answer with financial analyses. Scary.

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