The Love of the Game with Elle Brownlee – Post + Giveaway

November 9, 2015


Hello DSP readers! I’m Elle Brownlee, and I love baseball. I also love writing, and writing gay romance. These two loves lead to an inevitable conclusion: I wrote a baseball-themed book entitled Force Play.

I’ve always loved baseball. I was raised on it (I think it’s likely I heard my first game while in the womb). Baseball was something I shared with my family, and something I’ve taken pains to pass on to my niece and nephew. Many of my cherished memories are of going to Triple-A games as a kid, thinking it was the Big Leagues and believing our team couldn’t lose. Even if they did, we agreed they’d get ‘em next time, and we’d drive home listening to a different game all the way from another state far away crackling on the radio.

There’s always a game to be found during baseball season, and I’m always glad to listen along when one is playing. I know I’m not alone in thinking baseball games make the perfect ambient background noise for just about any task, from cleaning house to falling asleep with the radio tucked under your pillow. When you’re a fan of baseball the game itself gets deep inside you, down to your marrow, and there’s inherent comfort in having its reliable rhythm around.

That idea of being grounded by the game itself is what sparked my character’s journeys for Force Play. Harmon is at a major crossroads where the book opens, and Caleb is in a rut. Harmon wants to leave the game for good, and Caleb can’t walk away despite never being given the chance to shine. They argue, and clash, and sparks fly. But despite their differences, and different directions life has taken them, at their hearts they still have baseball. Baseball is the one thing that defines them separately, connects them to while they figure out being friends, and binds them as they start falling in love.

As I wrote Force Play I listened to old favorite games played by My Team. I’d steep a pot of tea, fire up Word, and stick Game 7 from the 2011 World Series in the DVD drive. (Psst, if you follow baseball, you’ll see I’ve just given away who I root for as My Team.) Often, as soon as the sounds of the game started filling the room, the words would flow, and Harmon and Caleb would be there telling me about their place with each other, and in the game. Even on days when writing was hard, I trusted my guys to show up the next day ready to give it and each other their best, because that’s what a true ballplayer does.

Baseball has so many stories to tell because baseball is about struggles and triumphs we can all relate to. So even if you’re not a superfan like me, there’s no need to worry. As the game begins and the sounds and rhythms surround you, you’ll understand what’s going on. There’ll be outs, runs, hits and misses—and I promise, the good guys win in the end.

Do you love baseball as much as I do? What is one of your cherished baseball memories—who does baseball connect you to? If you’re not a baseball fan (gasp!) what’s your go-to perfect ambient background noise?

I’ll be checking in to comment and I’m looking forward to your responses. I’ll also choose a giveaway winner from the commenters to nab the title of their choice from my backlist, so take a few swings or put on your glove. Play ball!


Find me all over the web. I’m always glad to chat—baseball and writing or both!





15 Responses to “The Love of the Game with Elle Brownlee – Post + Giveaway”

  1. Susan says:

    While I am not a fan myself (gasp!), I have a differently abled sister who loves the game. So baseball connects me to her. Her favorite teams are the Red Sox and Rockies. She has lots of team T-shirts and used to record the games when she was still able to do that. She still follows both teams and can give you their standings on any given day.

  2. Patty says:

    Sounds like an interesting book! Hockey is my first love, but baseball is not far behind.

  3. Laura Bailo says:

    We don’t really have a bit tradition of Basketball here in Spain, but my dad played in the National Team when he was young. I’ve watched some games on the TV, but I would love to see one live, the atmosphere must be great!

    Congratulations on the release!

  4. Angela says:

    Congrats on the release of Force Play, and a happy release day :)

    I pre-orderd the book on Are but sadly there is something wrong with the file there so i can’t download it yet. I sent a message to Are but will have to wait with reading the book until i hear back from them.

    As for Baseball, i’m not from the US so no real tradition here in this sport but i love to read sport theme books, and this include books about baseball.

  5. Trix says:

    I’m a hockey devotee, though I was impressed by both recent Giants’ WS wins. I also loved the play TAKE ME OUT, about a baseball star who outs himself and what happens next. There are some convincing pro-baseball speeches by the geeky gay PR agent who falls for the game after taking on the client, but I couldn’t pay attention because of the production’s sexy cast and nonstop male nudity…

  6. Kristina says:

    When I was a little girl, I loved playing all types of team-related sports. One of those sports happened to be baseball. Growing up in Fort Wayne, Indiana, I was so lucky…we had a community-based baseball league (Wildcats) which was started by Dale McMillen. I played for three years and having the opportunity to participate was priceless. This is just one article about this special league which continues today. 54 years so far…

    In Mr. Mac’s Wildcat League, everyone gets to play

  7. H.B. says:

    I not really much of a sports watcher although I do like sports themed romances. My brother likes of of those things and I have picked up some terminology and enough knowledge to understand what is happening.

  8. Elle says:

    Susan: (gasp!) indeed! What a wonderful connection to your sister. I’m sure she is always glad to regale you with stats and nuances and observations! You’re a lucky non-fan to have such a resource in times of baseball need. :D

  9. Elle says:

    Patty, as friend to many hockey devotees I know how dedicated and passionate they are. Almost a match for baseball fans! ;D

  10. Elle says:

    Laura you’re onto something very true about baseball: nothing beats seeing a game live at the stadium. The pace of the game makes even more sense in person, and being surrounded by other fans is an awesome group experience. :) Thank you so much!

  11. Elle says:

    Thank you, Angela! I’m so bummed to hear about the troubles and hope it’s resolved soon. I also hope you enjoy the book once you have it! :)

  12. Elle says:

    And Trix makes another hockey fan! I think the two games have similar qualities, and wouldn’t be surprised if there’s overlaps in fan bases. And that play sounds very interesting–verrrrry interesting. ;)

  13. Elle says:

    Kristina, how awesome is that? So awesome! Thank you for sharing that article. Mr. Mac is a real inspiration. I loved playing sports growing up, too; I can just imagine what a special opportunity playing in that league would have been. You were fortunate for sure!

  14. Elle says:

    We call that “sports by osmosis” in my family, H.B. :) Everything I know about American football is thanks to this passive exchange!

  15. Elle says:

    Giveaway Winner: A randomized drawing made Kristina the winner! Please let me know your DSP login email so we can get you the prize (you can contact me via any of the links in the above post). Thanks!

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