Can’t Quit You, Baseball
by Kate McMurray
I really thought I was done writing about baseball after I finished Out in the Field. I’d said what I had to say, I’d written the book of my heart, and I was ready to move on and write about other things.
But this world just kept pulling me back.
A few years ago, Shae Connor and I decided that we should put together an anthology of baseball stories. I readily agreed, though I was worried I wouldn’t be able to come up with a story. Then my brother suggested I write a dead-ball era historical. Then, while watching the Ken Burns Baseball documentary for the third or fourth time and thinking about how weird it is that a guy like Babe Ruth—whose athletic prowess was fueled largely by booze, women, and hot dogs—somehow became one of the greatest ball players of all time, when a story started to form in my mind. I set it in the Jazz Age, not the dead-ball era, but still, I had a new angle on baseball. That story became “One Man to Remember” in the Playing Ball anthology.
But then I really was done. Right?
I knew I wanted to write a series of connected books before I knew what it was going to be about. When someone suggested I write about baseball again, I pointed out how unlikely it was that there are enough gay major leaguers on any given team to build a series around—that the very premise seemed implausible to me—it was pointed out that I didn’t have to write about professional baseball players.
Fair point. Hence the Rainbow League was born.
I made it a LGBT league which handily solved the above plausibility issue, and once I got going planning out the series, I knew I’d been sucked back into the baseball world.
I intended for the series to be fun, for it to be a lot about guys who play baseball but mostly just hang out, befriend each other, and occasionally sleep together. I wound up dealing with some bigger issues—anxiety, loss, domestic violence—but I think that adds depth to the stories and characters. My hope is that, taken as a whole, there’s a lot in these stories that readers can relate to. The characters are regular guys who happen to play baseball together. They have lives outside of the sport. (Well, Mason from Thrown a Curve might argue he doesn’t, but he’s a former Yankee. Once a pro, always a pro, perhaps.)
So, I hope you enjoy these three books and my little foray back into baseball. I could tell you I’m off to write historicals or more classical musicians or what have you now, but let’s face it, I’ll be back to writing about baseball players soon enough.
About The Long Slide Home
Nate and Carlos have been the best of friends since their childhood playing baseball together in the Bronx. For the past few years, Nate’s been in love with Carlos, though he’s never acted on it and Carlos has never given any indication that he returns Nate’s feelings. Nate has finally given up, determined to move on and find someone else, especially now that Carlos has shacked up with his boyfriend, Aiden.
Carlos doesn’t understand why Nate has suddenly gotten weird, acting cold and distant at team practice for the Rainbow League. But if that’s how things are going to be, Carlos is done trying to figure Nate out. But then Aiden reveals he has a violent side, and Carlos needs his best friend’s support. On top of that, he starts to realize his feelings for Nate might not be limited to friendship. But in the aftermath of his relationship with Aiden, and with Nate having problems of his own, the timing is all wrong to make a real relationship work. As emotions run high, both have a hard time figuring out what is real and what is just convenient.
About Kate McMurray
Kate McMurray is an award-winning author of gay romance and an unabashed romance fan. When she’s not writing, she works as a nonfiction editor, dabbles in various crafts, and is maybe a tiny bit obsessed with baseball. She lives in Brooklyn, NY. Visit her website.
As part of this blog tour, Kate is giving away all 3 Rainbow League books and a $25 gift card!! To enter, just click the link below!
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