Saturday, December 31, 2022

Q&A with Mark Stevens

From my Q&A with Mark Stevens, author of The Fireballer: A Novel:
How much work does your title do to take readers into the story?

From the day I started writing it, this novel was called The One. It was sold as The One. The “1” is the fastball and the fastball is Frank Ryder’s dominating pitch. I also thought The One worked because Frank is the talk of the sports world. But, no. Too generic in search engines. And it would lead in all different directions, both within book and non-book searches. Arriving at The Fireballer took weeks and weeks of going around and around with my editor, my agent, and a few friends who got pulled into the head-scratching fray.

What else was in play (so to speak)? Unhittable. Pitch Perfect. Never Saw It Coming. Payoff Pitch. A couple dozen others.

For a long time, The Fireballer was in the running. It had staying power. It covered a lot of ground because Frank throws a supremely fast pitch and, in my mind, he’s kind of burning down the joint with the issues he’s bringing to the table. It was one of those stubborn...[read on]
Visit Mark Stevens's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Fireballer.

Q&A with Mark Stevens.

--Marshal Zeringue