The latest issue of The Westchester Review is out and I’m pleased to announce it contains the short story that was the basis for “The Penalty for Holding” (Less Than Three Press), the new novel in my series “The Games Men Play.”
Actually, this is not entirely correct, perhaps because the odyssey of a story and a novel is a story in itself. “Jakarta Rain,” as the story is called, began life as the first chapter I wrote for “The Penalty for Holding,” which was then called “In This Place You Hold Me.” That in turn began as a poem about a quarterback meeting a rival – and lover – on the football field.
“Jakarta Rain” tells the story of young Quinn Novak, an Indonesian-American boy who dreams of playing baseball and whose future is about to be changed by the arrival of his aunt, his mother’s older sister. When I submitted the chapter to The Review, the editors rightly intuited that it felt like part of a book and they wanted changes that would make it self-contained. Those changes differ from the ones I made to the same material for Less Than Three Press, proving that no two editors think alike.
Reading “Jakarta Rain” you would think Quinn’s fate is something very different from what actually happens to him. But such is literature and such is life.
I’m pleased to have Quinn’s story appear as a piece of short fiction and as a novel. It shows you how fluid writing is. It never ends, which can be daunting.
But it can also always be recreated anew. Which gives you hope.
The Westchester Review, featuring authors from the Hudson River to the Long Island Sound in Westchester County, N.Y., is available at Amazon.com and at westchesterreview.com.