What sparked your interest in the first female Olympic athletes? And why the Canadian athletes?
I happened upon a graphic novel by David Collier about Ethel Catherwood, a Canadian high jumper, which led me to researching the 1928 Olympics in Amsterdam, where women were allowed to compete in five track and field events for the first time, on a trial basis.
Then I decided to read great sports literature to figure out what makes it so great, including Leonard Gardner’s Fat City; Richard Ford’s The Sportswriter; W.P. Kinsella’s Shoeless Joe; H.G. Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights; Chad Harbach’s The Art of Fielding; Ben Fountain’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk; Bernard Malamud’s The Natural; David Halberstam’s The Best American Sportswriting of the Century; David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest–also his essays on tennis; Don DeLillo’s End Zoneand Underworld; and Norman Mailer’s The Fight.”
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