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Writing a biography

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by SheffieldAvenue, Mar 11, 2011.

  1. SheffieldAvenue

    SheffieldAvenue New Member

    Hey, SportsJournalists.commers.

    I'm about to dig into writing a biography. I've written a book before, but it wasn't about a single person, but a season.

    I know this place used to have a lot of authors hanging out, but I'm curious about whether anyone has ever written a biography and how they went about the process. How long it took and so forth and so on. How you kept notes. I was thinking about a running timeline with a folder for each year of the person's life, to at least begin the research. For inspiration, I've been re-reading portions of books like David Maraniss's Vince Lombardi biography and Howard Bryant's Hank Aaron biography, just to try to retrace their research, if nothing else.

    I read the Joe DiMaggio story in this week's SI, which was what inspired me to post about this, because I was so impressed by the level of detail in the piece about a double header that took place seven decades ago.

    Thoughts? Experiences? I don't know who lurks or hangs out here, but I would love to hear from people who wrote really successful (either commercially or critically) sports biographies. Seems like there isn't a wealth of how-to out there. Most interviews are just about the author's opinion of the person he is writing about or events surrounding that person.
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