On Your Mark. Get Set. Watch Babe Go!
My first biography co-written with my husband Rich Wallace releases MARCH 1 for WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH by Calkins Creek, an imprint of Highlights
Babe Didrikson Zaharias was determined to be the best–and she was. She never gave in and never gave up. Her rise in the sports world was legendary and awe-inspiring, but she was also driven and determined off the fields, battling poverty, loneliness, prejudice, and finally, cancer. Above all else, Babe was a fighter. “Acclaimed novelists and sportswriters Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace show readers the many sides of this greatest woman athlete, filling her intimate biography with newspaper accounts, personal letters, photos, and interviews with people who knew her.”
My first Young Adult novel MUCKERS.
3 unlikely friends and a town about to crumble
1 chance to win it all or be forgotten
Inspired by the true story of a 1950 racially-divided Arizona football team who must find a way to win before their home becomes a ghost town.
“Distinctive characters and finely drawn specifics of locale and landscape set this football story apart.” — Kirkus
Starred Review, School Library Journal, December 2013:
“… fans of H.G. Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights (Addison-Wesley, 1990) and other football histories will appreciate this inspiring tale.”
Learn more about Muckers by visiting gomuckers.com
NEW UPDATES on Events link above.
March 1, 2014: At a bookstore near you— Babe Conquers the World
March 15-16: Featured author, Tucson Festival of Books
My first novel Little Joe was a finalist for the South Carolina Children’s Book Award. Now out in paperback, Little Joe looks at the choices a young farm boy must make about treating animals and his relationship with the calf he raises for auction. Get the Teachers’ Guides.
- Finalist South Carolina Children’s Book Award
- Master List Oklahoma Sequoyah Book Award
- Nat’l Pick USDA’s Agriculture In The Classroom
- Nat’l Pick American Farm Bureau’s Feeding Minds & Cultivating Growth
It was an honor to be interviewed by author Meg Medina on her popular blog. The award-winning author’s novel Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass is on several lists for the best YA books of 2013. During the interview, which is posted below, I spoke about how I discovered the Muckers story, racism in 1950 Arizona, and the skills and emotions needed to write across cultures:
The holidays are a time to invite friends to your house, and that’s true for this blog, too. I’m honored to have Sandra Neil Wallace with me this week. Sandra is a former ESPN sportscaster and author of Muckers (Knopf 2013), a YA novel for anyone who loves fútbol Americano and underdog stories. But more important to me, it’s also a thoughtful look at anti-Latino racism in the 1950s and the difficult circumstances of Mexican-American families in Arizona at that time. Based on true events, the novel follows Red O’Sullivan, team quarterback, and his friend Cruz as they cobble together their high school’s last football season. It offers us not only an inspiring look back, but also a way to ask questions about where we are now in sports and race. Read More…
I returned from NCTE/ALAN13 (an annual conference for English teachers from K to University), to find a Starred Review of Muckers from School Library Journal.
For me, the news set my heart leaping and the gut reaction from my child within was, validation! The book I’d worked so hard to bring to life was appreciated enough to get a star.
I’m not alone. Writers are frequently quoted as saying the “starred” nod from literary reviewers not only signals validation, but can determine the trajectory of their career, or, as author, filmmaker, and college professor Booker T. Mattison told The Examiner, it’s “a branding tool, something you can use to validate your work.” Read More…
Would you give up fame and fortune to do what you truly love? How finding the Muckers story changed my life.
In the 1990s, long before I knew I’d actually be a published author, I was an ESPN reporter.
I remember the first time I was about to go on TV for an NHL broadcast. There was a production assistant counting me down to the minutes before I went “live,” and she said to me,“Do you ever think about the millions of people watching, and if you screw up, it would be the end of your career?” Read More…
Check out this terrific mix of book blogs. I’ll be guest blogging on some and others will be reviewing Muckers. Can’t Wait!
Monday, October 28th: A Blighted One
Tuesday, October 29th: Seaside Book Nook
Wednesday, October 30th: Knowing the Difference
Monday, November 4th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, November 5th: Teena in Toronto
Thursday, November 7th: Reading Lark
Monday, November 11th: Fiction Addict
Tuesday, November 12th: Sarah’s Book Shelves
Thursday, November 14th: Sweet Southern Home
Friday, November 15th: The Daily Mayo
Monday November 18th: Lavish Bookshelf
Wednesday, November 20th: Books a la Mode
Monday, November 25th: Patrica’s Wisdom
A book really comes alive when there’s a book trailer directed by Phil McCarty (David Sedaris producer of The Learning Curve). Thanks to the young actors who did the real Mucker players proud, the Hollywood stuntman who made sure they took the hits properly, and the great voice-over by Sam Riegel. Recognize him from the Spiderman videos? I couldn’t be happier with the MUCKERS trailer, and keep watching it on the Random House YouTube channel. How about you?