Since there’s still a while to go before the Asian swing (where there’s a good chance Fed might not show up), I asked Jonathan if I could use his blog in the downtime to share something that I have been working on over the last two years- a book that describes Roger Federer from a fan’s perspective.
It originally began as just a collection of quips about my biggest influence/ idol- Federer on the tennis court; rants that I would write when the occasional bout of inspiration struck, more often than not at 2 in the night- writings that I would relegate to the confines of my hard drive.
About a year in and I realised that I had penned down or accumulated nearly 200 pages worth of Federer material, analyses and commentary- ranging from his rivalries, his break point conversion rates, his achievements (which to be honest took up a lot of the word count), to his fashion sense and off court charity work, with the occasional mathematical analysis thrown in for good measure. (I was a Business Analyst at McKinsey and Company, and I figured that I might as well leverage my analytical skills every now and then to keep myself from getting too rusty in that department)
A few of these writings you might have already read on this very blog (thank you Jonathan) – “Breaking down the Fedal rivalry”, “The second serve analysis”, and more recently, “Debunking the weak era argument”; most of the others, I’d been scared to share with the world… up until now, having found a group of the most fantastic people on this blog who shared the same passion, were just as crazy, and had managed to create an environment that I genuinely enjoyed coming back to every day (if just to read Katyani’s predictions, Jonathan’s comebacks, Sid’s rants, Dippy’s fan stories… you get the point)
A while back I got the idea to involve the entire Federer fan community in the project. It was, after all, a book that described a fan's perspective on Roger Federer. So here I am, asking for your help. More than anything, I would love to get you involved in this book. If you have anything you'd like to contribute, send it in and I promise to try and fit it in somewhere. It could be a letter to Federer, a sentence telling him how he's influenced you, a paragraph, even a full page or a chapter.
Furthermore, if you happen to have any contacts in a publishing house/ advertising spaces somewhere in the world, who might be interested in taking this forward, that would be extremely helpful.
So to summarize:
End Product: An ebook and hopefully a physical book (if possible/ feasible)
How you can help?
- In other words anything Federer related is perfect.
(Of course, each contribution will be credited. I’ll get it proofed, edited and checked and run it by you to get your approval)
The biggest challenge that I can see are
1) Physical Printing. Publication houses are notoriously picky when it comes to anything from a new author. This problem can be bypassed by using the medium of digital publications (ebooks/ PDFs), but nevertheless, there is a certain charm about having a real paperback copy of your work- That's the dream really. Any contacts would be much appreciated.
2) Advertising. Without advertising, any project, however good it may be, will be left to the confines of family and a few friends here and there. I see two ways around this. One is through traditional advertising (facebook ads, google ads, hiring a PR company etc) that requires funding. Alternatively, through your support/ involvement, we can make this one BIG family. This method doesn't require much funding. It just requires your love and support. Spread the word. 🙂
If someone were to ask me what my first memory of watching tennis as an observer was, my mind would automatically rewind back to January 2008- the first of the two semifinals of the Australian Open. Someone called Roger Federer was just about walking onto Rod Laver Arena, to the deafening roar of a full house of Aussies, weapons holstered in a Wilson bag that hung from his sinewy shoulder, his game face on.
His opponent that day was a wiry Serbian, Novak Djokovic- a youngster with considerable talent, but unfulfilled potential, possibly due to the fact that he chose to focus his efforts on another of his talents- imitations. Not surprisingly, he had quickly earned himself the enviable title of the ‘Djoker.’
Something in me wanted Roger Federer to win. Was it his poise, his elegance and his grace on the tennis court? Was it the ferocity of his forehand that was more beautiful than anything in sport that I’d ever seen? Was it his fluid single-handed backhand that seemed like a weapon crafted from an older generation? Was it the variety in his game that made the wait for each shot worth its while?
The finesse in his game was evident for everyone to see. The stark contrast between the aggression in his game and the calmness in his demeanor made him a puzzle that intrigued me. It’s rare for something as physical and competitive as sport to be aesthetically pleasing, but here was someone at the helm of the game, making it look…simple. Watching him play was breathtaking. It was perfection, as I’d never seen before…
So there you go. An excerpt from the very beginning of something that began initially as a rant almost two years to his day, turned into a possible dream of something bigger, and will hopefully someday translate into something real- a book that describes Roger Federer from a fan’s perspective.
I have to thank Jonathan for letting me put this up on his blog. I know that this was an odd request- it’s really nice of you to allow me to use your blog as a platform for this.
What do you guys think? From what I’ve estimated, once I get all the submissions in, it should take me a fair amount of time to get everything edited, proof read, arranged properly, checked for continuity/ facts/ grammar etc (a couple of months at the very least). Once the final product is ready, then it’s on to trying and finding somebody who might be interested in marketing the book (physical or otherwise). That’s the plan. I really don’t want to think about Fed’s retirement, but if I can get it to coincide with that, it might be worth the wait.
Looking forward to hearing from you. Feel free to send in your contributions to my email id- sood_gaura[email protected]