Hey Folks. I’m a little late getting this one out today but it will be worth the wait. This afternoon I’m sittin’ on the porch with Author Ralph Peluso. He shares with us his journey through writing and what he’s learned along the way. Let’s listen:
My passion to create stories was hidden deep inside me for over 40 years. Originally I went to college to study sports journalism. Sadly, I sold out that dream for money, majoring instead in finance.
In 2008 and 45 years into a business career, the passion for creative writing still burned. As the fire re-kindled, I created series humorous short stories about vacationer incidents entitled “Jersey Shore Fever and Other Seaside Maladies.” Writing was rewarding, especially when the editor approved each story for publication. Wow, just the encouragement I needed to tackle a much bigger project.
In August 2009, I began research on the story I always wanted to write about the greatest baseball player of all time, Babe Ruth. The seeds of this novel were planted when I was 6. Growing up in the Bronx, my dad introduced me to baseball through a 13 inch black and white TV and 1956 World Series. As we huddled tightly near that small box watching the grainy player images, I was a hooked, Yankee fan forever.
Italian- American families have a tradition; Sunday dinner at grandma’s, followed by hours of loud discussion; debating any topic imaginable. Between April and October, the discussion was baseball centric. I quickly garnered a knack for debating the merits of Babe Ruth, the greatest ever; against uncles, cousins and friends; they favored Italian players or the stars of the 60’s.
With so much written about Ruth, my story needed a fresh angle. I discovered a different Ruth than depicted and I thought existed. Despite everything written about him, people really know very little of him. The challenge was creating a plausible story. I told my family the book would be completed by Christmas of that year.
When I put the pen down it was February 2014! Writing an historical fiction required an intense and more exhaustive research than I thought. I had completely underestimated the time needed. But, I discovered that although the research provided facts and background for the scenes and the stories within each chapter of the book already existed inside of me, many coming from my own life experiences.
The writing journey led to an unforgettable personal experience meeting Julia Ruth Stevens. The passion for her father was still very present. This was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Patience and flexibility became mainstays in the experience. Many times I started down a path only to find the research did not validate the contemplated story line; I learned to let the story evolve changing path was not a bad thing.
Manuscript in hand I had my book! Simply hand it to the editors; within a few days I’d have finished product back. Wrong, the editors made it readable, verifying facts, a valuable process to maintain suspension of disbelief.
I discovered many things during the writing process; never give up on your passions, it is hard work, and everyone near to you takes pride. Keep writing the juice is worth the squeeze.
I love that last line. I so agree that the juice is worth the squeeze. Thanks for sharing your journey, Ralph. It really helps me because I’m working on a historical fiction right now, and I’ve found a lot of what you say is so true. If you want to learn more about Ralph, please visit my Porch Guests Page.