Today, as part of the blog tour for Len Joy’s, ‘American Past Time’, I am going to be making three posts. The first will be this one, obviously, and will introduce the book and the author. The second post will be my review of American Past Time, and the final post will be a question and answer session with the author.
Hark! New Era Publishing
September 1953. Dancer Stonemason is three days away from his major league debut with the St. Louis Cardinals. With his wife and son cheering him on, he pitches the greatest game of his life. And then he loses everything.
Told against the backdrop of America’s postwar challenges from Little Rock to the Bay of Pigs to Viet Nam, “American Past Time” is the story of what happens to a man and his family after the cheering stops.
The book can be found here: Amazon
It’s the golden age of baseball; the stands are brimming with fans and the crowd is roaring. But in the blink of an eye – it’s all gone.
Author and triathlete Len Joy’s debut novel “American Past Time” (April 19, Hark! New Era Publishing) tells the story of Dancer Stonemason, a baseball player who is just days away from his major league debut with the St. Louis Cardinals. It’s September 1953, and Dancer’s family is rooting for him as he pitches the greatest game of his life. But then all the cheering – all the applause and all the support –comes to an end.
“As a father and as a son, I’ve always been interested in the bond between parent and child,” Joy says. “I had a very good relationship with my father and with my son, and it struck me that the worst thing that could possibly happen is to lose the respect of your children. Or conversely, to have a father or mother who turns out not to be the person you looked up to. Where do you go from there? That’s what this novel is about.”
Joy pulls from personal experience with his family – and triathlons – for his writing. A competitive age-group triathlete, Joy impressively finished his first Ironman competition at 61 and placed 33rd in his age group in the USA Triathlon National Championship the following year. He uses some of the same practices in trainings that he does in writing, and he learned first-hand how similar the two seemingly different activities really are.
“Both activities require a long view, discipline and a commitment to work at them every day. They both offer their fair share of disappointments and setbacks,” Joy said. “In both writing and triathlons, it is possible to measure your success through the progress you have made, not just where you finish the race. They both have a community that helps you as you pursue your goals.”
Joy’s short fiction has been published FWRICTION: Review, The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Johnny America, Specter Magazine, Washington Pastime, Hobart, Annalemma and Pindeldyboz.
He lives in Evanston with his wife of 40 years.
Len Joy is the author of two short fiction collections, “Casualties” and “Survivors.” His work has appeared in FWRICTION: Review, The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Johnny America, Specter Magazine, Washington Pastime, Hobart, Annalemma and Pindeldyboz.
Joy grew up in the Finger Lakes region of western New York. He graduated from Canandaigua Academy and went on to the University of Rochester where he met his wife. The couple moved to the Chicago area in 1974, and about 15 years later Joy bought an engine remanufacturing company in Phoenix, Ariz. with his brother-in-law.
He started writing classes in 2003 and eventually began devoting all of his time to the creative craft.
In addition to this sharp turn in his career, Joy started training for triathlons. He completed the Coeur d’Alene Ironman in his first attempt at 61 years old. He has a personal goal to one day finish in the top 10 of his age group at the USA Triathlon National Championship. Joy finished in 33rd place in 2013 and plans to make it in the top 10 in 2014.
Joy met his wife, Suzanne Sawada, when they were both freshmen at the University of Rochester. They have been married for forty years and live in Evanston, Illinois.
Information supplied by JKS Communications as part of their Virtual Tour: