Book Report

When I was writing my first book I didn't know if it would ever even be published.
Now, two years later and another book coming out in a couple weeks, writing books has lead to awesome things. BUT I never imagined that someone would do a BOOK REPORT on one of my books!!!! Below are some awesome pictures from a creative young lady with great taste.
(some *spoilers* for the first book in the text of the report)

So cool!!!!
And yes that is a Jell-o pool.

Two New Projects!!

Helloooo!

Today I'm announcing two new projects that I'm very excited about.

YOUNG AND IN LOVE is a new PODCAST that my wife Ashlea and I have started!

Here's the pitch: Pete and Ash are (relatively) young and certainly in love. Pete is an author, screenwriter, producer, and daddy. Ash is a teacher at an inclusive school and a mommy. Each episode they talk about parenting, productivity, and positivity and they also play fun games, discuss current events and pop culture. Welcome to Young And In Love!

The first episode is up RIGHT NOW. You can search Young And In Love on iTunes or find it here.

and

DREAMS & REALITY is a new BLOG SERIES that I'll be posting here on my blog.

Here's the pitch: I interview people that I know in the Reality TV realm. I'll ask them about the behind the scenes of working in "reality." Crazy stories, terrible craft services, run-ins with the talent... And also practical knowledge like how to get into television production, what is a "stringout", and what in the world could a "frankenbite" be? 

Another aspect of the blog posts will be focusing on the subject's Hollywood dreams. Why did they initially venture to Los Angeles? What side projects do they do? What are their aspirations for the reality space? I'll be able to pepper in my thoughts and experiences as well. It'll be fun!

So to my Reality TV friends and fam, email me if you would like to be interviewed for this series.

Thanks!!

Swim Lesson.

I've been swimming before work recently. I know, I know, hold your applause. I've swam? swum? swimmed? laps off and on since I was on the ole' Cheverly Dolphins Swim Team back in the day. They say it's great exercise.

I like it because it's one of the rare times I allow quiet in my brain. I'm usually listening to a podcast or spotify or I'm at work watching footage or I'm at home and my dang kids are jibber jabberin'. Even when I go to bed I'm "podding." But under the water it's eerily silent, in a good way, and I get my think on.

The pool I go to doesn't have many lap lanes. In fact, on some mornings there are only two lanes for swimmin', the rest of the pool devoted to water-obics, led by an older gentlewoman with a somehow-not-dangerous Britney Spears microphone attached to her face. Every time I walk up to the pool there is a calculation. How many lanes? How many people per lane? Who's swimming laps? Who's doing a weird psuedo-exercise move on the ladder at the far end of the pool? Why is he doing that? Why is he not being dragged out of here?

All that to say, I want to find a good lane where I won't either be holding up the next Michael Phelps with my non-Olympic stroke speed OR I'm not running into the back of anyone's legs because I'm, not to brag, better-than-average at swimming.

Yesterday (or maybe the day before the day before, who cares?) as I was walking into the facility there was a hefty older fella slowly making his way towards the locker room. I went around him because every morning I'm on a very tight timeline so that I can: drop my baby off at daycare, swim some laps, then get home to get ready for work so that I can sit on the 101 for an hour.

I walked into the natatorium (look it up, great word) and saw that there was (heavenly choir awww sound) an open lane! I slid into that sucker and began to swim. The joy of an open lane, must be like what the very eagle soaring upon yonder gale of wind betwixt the clouds and heav'n must feel. Freedom. America. Third thing.

But then (organ music) the hefty fella from earlier splooshed into my lane. I thought "Oh jeez louise" because it's tough to share a lane under the best circumstances, and this guy looked like he spilled over the lane line with his girth. I was relatively bummed. I mean, not devastated because I get to swim on a weekday morning, that's pretty sweet, but still it's not the ideal swim sitch'.

As soon as the guy started swimming my tune changed. This guy was quick! He may move like a turtle on land, but he moved like a SEA turtle in the water. He was even doing flip turns at the end of each lane. I don't do flip turns, I do the thing where you just get to the wall, turn around, and push off. But this guy was serious!

It ended up being one of my best sessions at the pool because I never had to wait for him or slow my stride. A couple times I hastened my own booty because I felt like I might be in his way. Basically, me and this guy has great swim chemistry, or "swim-istry" as I will forever call it from now on now matter how many groans it induces. And I relearned a tale as old as time, never judge a book by its cover. Unless of course it's my book The Happenstances... and in that case judge the cover because it's awesome and so is the book. In summation: buy my book. Oh, and I won't be a jerk to people based on my preconceived notions. I will now happily share a lane with anyone as long as it's not the guy doing the weird ladder exercises who makes me nervous.

#Pete30Before30 Wrap Up: Part 2

I'll discuss a few more of my #30Before30 things now, one week from my 30th birthday!

6)    Play it for the first time, Sam
I went through a bunch of ’30 movies to see before you turn 30’ lists and put together a set of movies that I should have seen already.  Classics that not only as a former film student I am ashamed that I haven’t seen, but I’m ashamed as a human (cough, The Godfather, cough), so uh, yeah, I’m going to watch those, so I don’t have to smile and nod when people are discussing horse heads in beds and offers people can’t refuse or whatever.

OK, well I didn't keep track of this as closely as I should have and unless Training Day (which I rewatched the other night) counts as a classic movie (which I would argue IT DOES!) then I think I'm more than a few shy of 30. I did watch: Annie HallChinatownDefending Your LifeGlengarry Glen RossGoodfellasGrease, and Philadelphia to name the ones I kept track of. This was also a learning experience though. I don't think I could power through several classic movies in a row. I need a wide variety of older movies, dumb movies from my past (I'm looking at you Mortal Kombat: Annihilation), and the best of modern day movies (Ex MachinaStar Wars: The Force AwakensThe Revenant... and that's just great movies with Domhnall Gleeson in them!) So yes, I did really love watching the classics, but I have to keep abreast of what's happening as well. I am going to try to incorporate more classic movies into my diet though.

Speaking of a variety of movies, you've got to check out my friend Joe Frank's debut movie Sweaty Betty, now available on Amazon on DVD or streaming.

In a cramped row house on the border of Washington, D.C., two stories of big dreams take place. Floyd and his family have raised a 1000-pound pig in their backyard, and are determined to turn her into the team mascot for the Redskins football team. Floyd puts his plan into motion, but the pig, named Miss Charlotte, draws unwanted attention. A few blocks away, Rico and Scooby, two teenage single fathers and best friends, are hanging around the neighborhood. As they scheme up a plan for a better life for themselves and their children, they are presented with an unexpected opportunity. Based on a true story! From the Producer of Straight Outta Compton.

"The great discovery of this year's SXSW festival" --Eric Cohn, Indiewire

7)    Kiss the Cook…
I love to cook, but I return to the same things over and over.  I need to add some new dishes into my life and maybe try some baking.  Plus, who doesn’t love pictures of food on instagram!?

I most certainly did this. A couple standouts were: banana and egg pancakes (that's it, those are the only ingredients! you can add vanilla or blueberries or whatever, but they're so good and easy), black bean burgers, a buffalo tofu and bleu cheese panini, and many, many more. I tagged them #Cook30 on my Instagram. I'm going to try to incorporate more vegetarian dishes into my life because in general meat in America isn't handled well. It contributes to pollution in a major way, the animals are treated cruelly, etc. BUT, any time my brother in law Josh kills and prepares deer meat I'm in because he hunts his own meat, stores it, and uses it to feed his family and lucky others. 

8)    And Food for Thought
And in the same vein, eat better!  I eat fairly healthfully now, but I can do better.  No soda, no artificial sweeteners, etc, so that I’ll see the next 30 years, or 300, who knows with technology advancing the way it is these days.

I gave up soda and diet soda, I stopped using Sweet N Low and switched to Raw Sugar, I drank more seltzer water and less drinks with calories in them. I generally ate pretty well... However, I didn't cut down on caffeine or alcohol, if anything I doubled down, haha! Those are still areas where I could improve but I love a good buzz going up or down. I am going to go all out on my birthday, but I could probably take some time off afterwards.

 must have...

must have...

9)    Adventure Time!
I’m going to take my family on 30 adventures this year.  The beach, a new museum… San Francisco maybe?  Christian loves to learn, Ash loves to travel, and I love to walk around new places drinking caffeinated and/or alcoholic beverages, so let’s combine that into some amazing trips and new experiences.

Some notable family adventures: going fishing, Street Food Cinema, Santa Barbara day trip, Palm Springs, Sriracha Chili Grinding Festival, Krispy Kreme's Talk Like a Pirate Day, Christian learning to swim over the summer, Big Bear, the LA Zoo, Bro's Mornings, Sky High Trampoline Park, and of course, the biggest adventure of all, having another baby, yowza!

10)    Investing in Myself
I’m going to start saving for my retirement.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to work, to a certain extent, but some day I’d like to not work, so I gotta get on that, I’m almost 30 for goodness sakes.

I was not able to do this, in fact, I'm looking for a new gig right now so if you hear of anything, let me know...

However!!! I was talking to a good friend the other night, Marc E., editor extraordinaire and person of frequent mention on blogs across the land, and he was talking about another gentleman who said you should have a way of making money that makes money for you instead of you making money for someone else... whatever, I'm butchering the concept, but anyway, writing my book was another stream of income that will hopefully become a way of making money while I make money at my other job, you know? So far I've spent way more on marketing the book than I've gotten paid in royalties, but someday hopefully that tide will change or the book will get optioned to be a movie or what have you. And I'm going to keep writing books and keep making that "mailbox money" as one might say.

Did I mention buy my book?!

11)    Let Them See You Sweat
Exercise for (at least) 30 minutes a day, (at least) 4 times a week.  Straight up.

Check.

12)    Take a Stand
Yep, I’m going to be ‘that guy’ at work with the standing desk.  I haven’t done too much research into the whole ‘sitting down for however many hours a day is going to kill you’ thing, but I know people who have looked into it, and I trust them.

I did this at work for 1 out of 3 jobs last year, so not the majority, but I did it at home too though. After Calvin was born my go-to move for a couple weeks was to wear him in the Baby Bjorn while I wrote at my stand up desk, pretty sweet.

And the last one for this batch, lucky 13)    Worth a Thousand Words, But What’s That in Dollars These Days?
I’m going to take and post a picture on instagram every day, #Pete30Before30, because there’s beauty all around, even in the mundane, and I need to take more time to stop and recognize all the wonderful… just kidding, I need more social media followers so that I can sell more books, haha!  The other stuff is true too though!!

You can see all of my picture-a-day posts by searching the hashtag #Pete30Before30 on Instagram. I did indeed increase my social media followers this year, on Instagram I have more than double what I did last year and I know that I have made book sales directly by posting on my social media accounts, so onward and upward.

Alright, more to come later, thanks!!

#Pete30Before30 Wrap Up: Part 1

It's almost here... I turn 30 years old in 2 weeks! It's been an incredible year and I think that a lot of that will come out as I wrap up my 30 Before 30: 30 things I wanted to accomplish, watch, even buy, in the year before I turned 30. This is just Part 1, I'll do a couple now and a couple more until I've covered all 30.

So here we go!

My original post will be in italics, then I'll type up my summary in good ole' normal type.

1)    Save Face
I was born with a cleft lip, I donate money to Operation Smile to help kids less fortunate than me get the life changing surgery that I was blessed enough to get when I needed it.  Over the course of this year I’ll donate enough for one surgery ($240), please join me in donating if you so desire.  I set up a OneSmile page where you can donate along with me here:
http://tinyurl.com/PetesOneSmile

I have indeed donated my $240 for one surgery (which I'll do every year by the way). I set another goal to raise donations for another $240 for another surgery and a bunch of awesome people donated and we raised an additional $300!! I'm going to try to push for another $180 on my birthday so that all in all 3 kids will have had their lives changed, but even what we did already is pretty cool. Thank you to anyone who donated.

 

2)    Don’t Run in Place, Run at a Place
I’m going to run a 5k!  Hopefully a fun one that involves beer or inflatable obstacles or mud or something.  This will be probably pretty tough for me and I’ll have to do some training for it.  I’ll keep you posted on which one I do so you can come along.  Maybe I’ll run for Operation Smile and raise some more money!

Man, this one was pretty cool. First of all I was able to raise money for Operation Smile through running the 5K. I ran the LA Harvest Festival Pumpkin Run and at the end I got a pumpkin! Another cool part about this goal was that I hated running but through training for the 5K I kind of got into running and now I run a couple days a week, so this was a life changer.

 

3)    Let Me Upgrade Me
I use my laptop computer every day at work, I write scripts and things on it, I’m writing this on it currently, right this second.  I got my MacBook before Facebook was invented…  It’s old.  I need a new one.  I’m going to do the damn thing and invest in a new laptop.

All I have to say about this one is... bling blinggg (and see picture below).

 

4)    A Novel Idea
Here’s a big announcement…  I have a deal with a publishing company to publish a novella I wrote.  This is beyond a dream come true, it’s a dream that I never knew I had in me really, I didn’t think it was possible.  I will write about this in length as the different steps happen.  So excited!!

In June of 2015 my first novel The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last was published by Koehler Books, it has been such a cool experience! I've been working hard to try to get the word out about the book. I've bought ads, been a guest on some of my favorite podcasts, and really hit the social media hard. In fact, if you still haven't bought the book you should go here: www.tinyurl.com/TheHappenstances and get the paperback or kindle version, what are you waiting for!?

AND, I'm working on a follow up novel to The Happenstances... where we'll pick back up with the Yellow County crew a couple of years later. Look out for that in probably 2017.

Here's a picture of me when I first got to hold a hard copy of my book:

 

5)    Be a Sport
I like sports, I like to play sports, but I hardly watch sporting events.  I’m going to make up for my total lack of sporting knowledge by watching the ESPN 30 for 30 documentaries.

OK, this will be the last one for today, and we'll end this group on a failure... I only watched 8 of these (list below) but every one I saw was excellent and I learned a ton that I didn't know before. I am definitely going to continue to incorporate these and of course other docs into my life. There's nothing better than a well-done documentary.

So those were my first five 30 Before 30 goals and how they turned out. Stay tuned for the rest of the list...

 

How did you find the time?

My book, The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last, has been out for just over a month now.  It's been so cool to see pictures on social media of people with my book at the pool or at the beach, or tagging me saying "I just got your book!"  I've sold my book to a couple people in person and they've asked me to sign it, which is crazy.  I've had a couple conversations about the book with coworkers and family and podcasters and an interviewer for a web show.  It's awesome!  And it's especially cool because I really believe in the book.  I've created a lot of content and Happenstances is what I'm most proud of so far in my content creating career.

I work in television production and a question that invariably comes up is "How did you find the time to write a book?!"  Coworkers say they would like to write or make a film or this hobby or that and they're amazed that I completed a thing.  My answer to their question is always that I didn't "find the time to write a book"...

I made the time.

I got it into my head that I was going to adapt my screenplay into a young adult novel and then for the next couple of years I chipped away at it, an hour here, 30 minutes there.  Believe me, if I had looked at as a full task I would have been overwhelmed, but I looked at it as a process.

That's what I'm doing with the next book.  I'd love to set a deadline and write X amount of pages per day and all the sorts of things you read in the "how to write" books.  

But currently, with a 4 year old son, another son on the way, a 50+ hour a week job, promoting the first book, and everything else that pops up in life just being an adult human, I can't think about the next book in a traditional way.

So for me, right now, I'm happy to get a few moments a week, probably after my son is asleep, and probably while my pregnant wife is binge watching "Friends" and my pug is probably snoring somewhere on the carpet that she blends in with, to chip away at that next book.

The Sunglass Ville Saga

Let's flash back to weeks before my novel, The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last, was released (now available from Koehler Books, www.tinyurl.com/TheHappenstances by the way).  I was in the midst of planning my book release party.  I ordered two boxes of books to be sent straight to Maryland, I ordered whistles that perfectly complimented the color scheme of my cover as bookmarks, AND I worked with a company called Sunglass Ville to design some promotional sunglasses to give away at my book events.

The staff was helpful over the phone and the process was easy, I ordered 144 pairs of custom sunglasses and it was $135.

A week or two later I checked the tracking number to see when I could expect my sunglasses because my event in Maryland was fast approaching and FedEx's website said that they had delivered the box a couple of days before.  Ashlea (my wife) was missing a box of prescription contacts she was expecting as well and it was around Christian's (my son) birthday and my parents sent him gifts that were also MIA.

We all called our shipping services and it was apparent that someone had seen several boxes outside of our house and stolen everything.  It was sad that Christian's gifts were gone, it was inconvenient that Ash's contacts were gone, and I was mad that my sunglasses were taken.

I'll cut through some of the back and forth with Sunglass Ville because in the end they did the right thing and reprinted and re-sent a new box of custom sunglasses to me at their loss.  The sunglasses are high quality and Sunglass Ville's customer service helped me work through the problem, I applaud their business ethics and I will be buying custom sunglasses from them again in the future.  I recommend Sunglass Ville for ALL of your custom sunglasses needs.

Here is their lovely product (and mine!!)

Their site is: https://www.sunglassville.com/

Such a Tease

I posted the book teaser trailer for The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last last week and I've gotten very positive reactions to it, thank you to everyone who has watched it so far, and if you haven't, here it is!

Another bit of Happenstances related conversation, last week I also sent out my first email newsletter to the mailing list I've accrued of family, friends, past and current colleagues, collaborators, etc.  I plan on sending content, updates, etc once every couple of weeks, nothing intrusive, but totally fun.  

If you'd like to be on that mailing list, or just want to drop me a Happenstances related line, email me at TheHappenstances at gmail.com, or contact me on Facebook or Twitter or even leave a comment on this post, (so many ways!!?!).

I think that covers it.

A few weeks ago I got an email that was simply titled Happenstance Cover.  I was sitting at work (or standing rather, #StandingDesk), it was the middle of the day on a Wednesday, and then that email came in and rocked my world.  

The graphic designer assigned my book cover introduced herself, said that she had read the book, and loved not only the book itself, but the concept for the front cover that I pitched.  She included some sketches attached as a PDF.

I opened the attachment and the characters that I had been creating since college were there on those sketch pad pages.  It was awesome.

CUT TO: A few weeks later.

My publisher just released two potential covers to The Happenstances... and you, yes YOU, can vote on which one you enjoy the most.  Click here (or on the picture), read the synopsis and such, then VOTE via the sidebar poll.

By the way, both of these book covers have SO many hidden 'easter eggs' from the book.  I can't wait for people to read it.

Shooting the Book Trailer

Last weekend I shot a book trailer for The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last.  

First and foremost, big, big thank yous to Rick Bickerstaff, Jason Marsh, and Marc Femenella for helping me with this project.

I work a minimum of 10 hours a day, plus (not to sound like "The Californians" but) I live in the valley and my office is in Santa Monica so that adds a bit of a commute on either end of that.  And I ordered some awesome lifeguard shorts for the shoot that hadn't come yet (and still haven't by the way).  So Friday night came around and there were still miles to go before I slept.  I stopped at Smart & Final on my way home from work to get snack bar-esque supplies.  Then I ran by Target to get replacement red shorts to stand in for the waylaid pair.

Finally I got home and it was time to cook.  

I cooked late-ish into the night.

I was the Walter White of fried foods.

I dipped into my own supply though...

Here were just a few of the props:

The next morning I rose early and drove down to the wonderful Redondo Beach.  Rick and his family were very generous with their time, their home, and their baby who is a delight.  The location was great for what I needed to shoot.

Jason brought some badass equipment and his bad self.  

And basically the shoot was a few bros bro-ing down by the pool.  

Beautiful weather, good food, great footage shot.

And I even got in front of the camera for a little thing that I'm excited to see how it turned out...

This weekend or next Marc will be cutting a couple things together and I'll release them as my book's release date approaches.

So far so many people have helped in making this dream come true, I appreciate it.

A day in the life

My morning commute to work currently takes so long that the weather changes dramatically from the time I doop-doop open my car door to when I roll down my window to scan my parking card.  I'm talking maybe thirty degrees.  And I only live a baker's dozen miles from the office where I currently work.  But that's the deal.

Some days as I'm crawling up the hill, like if Sisyphus had to take the 405 to work too, I hope that I'm living my origin story, my Act One, where the average guy is doing the mundane stuff that should really only last for a couple pages at the top and then some inciting incident grabs him out of his routine and thrusts him into the meat of his movie.  I'm hoping Happenstances is that thing.

Then I get to work and I get to make television, and meet awesome, creative people.  The drive home is not so bad, especially due to the daylight savior who bequeathed us with another hour of sunlight, so even though I still miss the sun setting, the night has not completely muscled the day aside and the sky is a pretty shade of, as Jack's Mannequin might say: dark blue.  When I get home to my wife and my son and my pug my life is extraordinary, #blessed.  

Then at night, after Christian has heard once again what was on the menu for that particularly hungry caterpillar, when Summer is snoring somewhere, and Ashlea is sipping tea on the couch, watching one hour dramas about vampires or teens or vampire teens, the laptop is cracked open.

Busy Pete is a Better Writer

As I was riding my bike last night, pondering, I had some thoughts that I clumsily told my wife when I got home.  I thought I'd try here though, to clearly state something that I think is important.

There's a way of thinking, and I don't want to call it a "common misconception" because maybe it is the truth for some, that you can/should put your family life on hold while you move up in your career.  Or someone who had a child or got married young may look back at their life and think that they could have been so much more successful if they had only not had that kid or married that person.

I admit that I've had the latter thought before at times, like where could I be if I was 'Single Pete'.  But last night I realized that I was wrong.

I got married to Ash at 23 and we had Christian when I was 25, so we weren't babies having babies, but we were relatively young for my peer group.  And I've thought in the past that if I didn't have the responsibilities of being a husband, dad, co-money-provider/ co-bill-payer, that I could have more time to write, more chances to network, more time to produce sketch comedy videos and take UCB classes and such.  Which is true, sure, but...

Having less time to devote to writing has made me a better writer.  'Single Pete' would have the luxury of being able to dawdle, write a couple pages here and there. 'Busy Pete', I'll refer to my current self as, has to be laser-focused every writing session.  Before my writing sessions were watered down lemonade, today they're frozen concentrate.  Take those babies out of the freezer, add water (or booze) and start cranking.

But besides that, the support that Ash has given me has been the single most propelling thing in my writing life.  She's read all my stuff.  She's my biggest cheerleader.  She's believed in me when I haven't.  I wouldn't be about to have Happenstances published without her.

In my life, being married young-ish and growing with Ash has been the best thing.  And Christian is a constant source of joy, and often times hilarious anecdotes.

So, thanks Ash and Christian.  

Love, Pete

First Attempt

The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last was the second screenplay I ever tried to write.  I would sit in my classes at Towson and brainstorm scenes for it then go back to my dorm and plunk away at my Costco-bought desktop computer's keyboard into just a Microsoft Word document.

My first attempt at a screenplay was called Worth a Try, but the Word Doc was just called "First Attempt" because I didn't have the courage to actually let myself pretend I was actually writing a movie.  It was just an attempt, an experiment.  I loved movies so much that I couldn't imagine fooling myself into thinking that I could write one.

But I wrote it, and it may have been a little short, and cliche, and it was definitely too autobiographical for anyone to probably care, but I left the document titled "First Attempt" when I gave it to my friend to read.  He thought the script was pretty good, but suggested I change the title, First Attempt wasn't that compelling.  I said "Yeah, it's called Worth a Try, I don't know why uh, it says "First Attempt" on there..."

My second attempt was the brashly titled The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last.  It started as the kernel of: how would I feel if I graduated college with a film degree and then immediately went back and worked at my summer job and exploded from there into the collage it is today.

The Summer Before Last... This Summer!

This summer I will have my first novel published.  I mean, it's actually a novella (I like to euphemistically call it a "quick read") but still, the fact that I just wrote that first sentence of this blog and it's true is currently blowing my mind.

You know what's not short though?  The title, The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last.  It's a mouthful, I know, but ever since I first started writing the story in college, that has always been the title.

A quick synopsis: The Happenstances at the Yellow County Community Swim and Racquet Club the Summer Before Last is a bittersweet, nostalgic, but comic novella about a team of misfits, including a loser who secretly lives in the guard house of the club, a struggling artist with webbed toes, a timid teen with a concave chest, and the beautiful heiress of the Comfort Inn fortune.  They have to win the impending Tri-County Relay Race and save the club from being run by a management company that only cares about money.  The management company hires an opposing relay team of ringers including a girl with a prosthetic dorsal fin and a man named Carmichael Schmelps who looks suspiciously like a certain Olympic gold medalist.

So basically it's the 'let's get the team together and win the big (fill in the blank, in this case it's a swim meet) so we can keep this place we love' story, but it's a new take on that type of story and it's also so much more than that.  

I've been writing this story in different iterations since college.  It started as a feature length screenplay, once I moved to LA I got several rounds of notes on it from my writer's group and others that I asked to read it.  The screenplay was even a finalist in the Beverly Hills Film Festival Screenplay Competition one year.  And I still ultimately see it as a movie too, and I'm hoping this book will be a step in that direction.