Okay, those new to the blog may not know this, but I'm a big baseball fan. Yep, Love me some boys of summer!
Now given my love of western historical romances, you'd probably think my favorite team would be the hometown Texas Rangers. Uhm, I do root for them to win as long as they aren't playing my favorite team, The Cleveland Indians. That's right, I'm a fan of the Tribe! We pay to watch 162 Cleveland games every year on TV. Through good years and bad, we root for our Indians.
Now this past spring's scouting report wasn't very good. To we Indians fans it was dire. Hubby came into my office the week before the start of the season and said, "Suz, the Tribe is going to suck so bad this year they're not even expected to win 9 games."
Sigh. Such a pesimistic fair-weather-fan is my other half! I looked him straight in the eye and said, "I don't think they're as bad as that. In fact, I think the pundits are wrong. The Indians are going to surprise everyone."
So April 1st and the start of the baseball season comes along. The Tribe not only lost their first 2 games, they lived down to the expectations of all the sports writers and my dear hubby. They got killed!
But then something happened. The players said to each other, "What if we don't listen to everyone else and start listening to ourselves? What if we play ball like we love it? What if Masterson and Tomlin and Carrasco start pitching really well? What if Asdrubal Cabrerra starts making fabulous plays and hitting at will? What if Hanahan makes remarkable catches at third? What if Travis Hafner stays healthy for most of the season? What if Carlos Santana and Hafner have walk-off-grand-slams to win games? What if even in the bottom of the ninth we believe we can win?
What if the fans believe? What if the players believe?
Funny thing started to happen. My boys of summer started winning. Slowly rising to the top of the American League Central.
Well, the pundits had something to say about that. "They'll never be that far up come May." Then in May, the Indians managed to stay in the AL Central lead.
Pundits: "They'll never last through June. They just don't have what it takes."
Tribe: Continued to win, stayed atop the AL Central. Yes, the Tigers were closing in, but the boys from Cleveland were hanging tough, finding ways to win. Sometimes with starting pitching, sometimes with relief pitching from the bullpen, sometimes with great defensive plays, sometimes with great hitting.
Now it's August. Where is my Tribe? Well, we're not in first anymore. We're in second with a six game deficit between us and those pesky Tigers. With only 30 some games left, the possibility of catching up is there, but the probability is slipping from our grasp with every loss by us and win by them.
I pray they make it. I pray we can have an October of playoff baseball for these guys. They've played hard all year. They haven't given up. What if they get one final surge and make it to the playoffs?
If they don't, I can tell you they've certainly had a season of "what if ?" that no one ever expected them to have.
That's the fun part of "what if?". It's not expected. There are no expectations and more importantly, no limitations.
What if I hadn't met my husband? Would I have the kids I have or the grandbabies? Would I ever have ended up in Texas? Would I have met the writing friends who have helped me become a better writer and a published one? Would I have finaled in the GH? Would I have met the Banditas? Would I have met you, our readers?
As a writer, I love the possibility of "what if?". The freedom it gives me and my characters.
Here's some "what if?" 's:
What if an undercover FBI agent needs medical help for a material witness but can't go to a traditional ER and risk the dirty cops finding them? What if he kidnaps a nurse out of a dark parking lot? What if she fights helping him until she realizes the wounded witness is a child? What if that child is the same age her dead daughter would've been?
*Yeah, I thought that was good, too!* That's the premise of KIDNAPPED, my RS that finaled in the GH Long Contemporary category.
What if a small town sheriff finds a wanna-be private investigator digging through the local town's dumpster and she stimulates more than his curiosity? What if they find a mysterious murderer living in his town? What if she is the only one who can save him in the end? That is the second book in a small town series I've written, CLOSE TO HOME.
What if a young woman is hiding from the law and the outlaw gang she helped rob a bank? What if two U.S. Marshals ride into town and discover not only her identity, but that she is unaware of her own sexual submissive side? What if they use that to gain information about the gang's whereabouts? What if she's attracted to both marshals? Yep, the plot to THE SURRENDER OF LACY MORGAN.
What if a woman witnesses the murder of a U.S. Senator? What if she needs to get out of town and decides to take up the offer to be a mail-order bride? What if the man she marries is distrustful of women keeping secrets, but needs her help to care for his young daughter? What if she falls in love with him? Yep, that's the plot to my book, CANTRELL'S BRIDE, (formerly known as REFUGE), recently sold to Ellora's Cave Blush Line!
So I think "What if?" is a very powerful idea. How about you? Have you ever had significant "What if?" moments? As a writer, do you ever have "What if?" beginnings to your books?