Good Day World!
It’s my absolute pleasure to introduce you to someone I always thought was a talented writer, Woody Woodburn. Woody worked for me at The Desert Trail Newspaper in 29 Palms back in the mid 80s.
As a matter of fact, it was his first job working on a newspaper. I assigned him to sports, which he quickly put his personal stamp on, making each article more than just a sports story. He loved to feature athletes and their stories.
In what proved to be an eerie coincidence, the publisher of The Desert Trail once asked me who Woody thought he was…Jim Murray? He felt Woody’s articles were too long, and didn’t have enough sports scores in little boxes.
I never told Woody that, and when the day came and it was time for him to move on to bigger and better things, I wished him the best, but wasn’t sure if I’d ever see or hear from him again.
Long story short, we recently got back into contact and have had the opportunity to renew our friendship (I always felt he was more friend than employee). I also found out that Woody met and talked with Jim Murray, and his sports writing ability landed him in the Jim Murray Memorial Foundation’s Journalists Hall of Fame!
I told Woody what the publisher said about him all those years ago and he laughed. Typical Woody.
As his first editor, I can tell you Woody got even better over the years and his writing style will leave you informed, inspired, and impressed!
I’m going to let Woody take it from here:
Quick summary: In 1987 as a young sports writer in Santa Maria and near-newlywed I met Coach, who soon became a friend and mentor through the births of Dallas and Greg; the death of my mother; career decisions; and more.
As I note in my just-completed manuscript: “One did not have to play for Coach Wooden in order to be one of his students, and of this I am a privileged example.
(Woody Woodburn & Coach)
I was not one of his basketball players – except for one glorious week at his youth camp in 1975 – but make no mistake, I was his pupil. No coach or teacher or professor has taught me more, or taught me more important things.”
Just as Coach Wooden was beloved and revered by people of all ages and all backgrounds, readers from teens to parents to grandparents, sports fans and non-fans alike, will find Wooden & Me enlightening and inspiring.
Unlike the other books by and about John Wooden, mine is not written solely for the basketball fan or business leader, but rather is a relationship memoir of wide appeal.
Indeed, journalist and author Randy Robertson described my book this way after reading the manuscript: “WOODEN & ME is an inspiring combination of Tuesdays With Morrie and Chicken Soup for the Soul.”
(Greg(8-yrs old)and Dallas(10)Woodburn with Coach)
For their pledged support individuals will receive a personalized autographed paperback of WOODEN & ME this summer upon publication.
Time for me to walk on down the road…