Butler County Times Gazette
  • Getting published

  • What if the worst demon from your past one day found you? Worst of all, what if that demon ... was you?

    That is the premise of the book, “Pitch,” which was recently released by former El Dorado resident Matthew Krause, who now lives in Venice, Calif.
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  • What if the worst demon from your past one day found you? Worst of all, what if that demon ... was you?
     
    That is the premise of the book, “Pitch,” which was recently released by former El Dorado resident Matthew Krause, who now lives in Venice, Calif.
    “I started this story years before ‘Baby’s Breath’,” Krause said.
    “Baby’s Breath” was a movie Krause wrote and filmed in El Dorado several years ago.
    “When I first quit drinking and got sober, I had an idea of a person who, through a rift in time, sees 10 years in the future and what his life is like,” he said.
    The idea occurred to him in 1994, at which time he was three months sober. He didn’t officially start writing it until 2007, when he completed a rough draft.
    Then in May of this year he entered the book in a contest with Balboa Press, a division of Hay House. The book won first place in their contest, which included getting the book published in hardcover and softcover, as well as help with marketing it.
    “That was exciting,” Krause said.
    Although he started several writing projects throughout college, this is the first novel he has finished.
    “Of all the stories or screenplays I’ve written, this was the problem child,” he said.
    One of the obstacles he faced was how to make the alcoholic version of the character, Nicholas “Pooch” Shepherd, villainous. He had ideas to put him in the drug scene or in a gang, but because Krause didn’t have the knowledge of those scenarios, it didn’t work out. He wanted to keep the character like a real person.
    Instead, he chose to put a baseball angle in the story.
    “Pooch” is an ambidextrous pitching prodigy, who, because of his love of the drink and a talent for sabotage, puts his friend in the hospital during a night of drunken violence.
    “The baseball angle really made it come alive for me,” Krause said.
    The second obstacle with this book was Krause had the idea when he was only three months sober and he was trying to write about a character who was 10 years clean.
    “I didn’t know what it was like to be 10 years sober,” he said.
    While the story is based on some of Krause’s experiences and knowledge about being a recovering alcoholic, he said although he understands the anger the character has, he never got to that point in his life.
    Page 2 of 2 - “I never went that far, but I understand the feeling,” he said.
    In the book, the 10-year-sober version of Nicholas Shepherd is caring for his ailing mother and teaching baseball to local kids. While things seem to be going well for him, a change is about to take place. The rage-filled Pooch of 1989 breaks into his reality and the current Nicholas has to deal with Pooch and send him back to where he came from before he destroys his life.
    “Baseball helps the characters bond,” Krause said.
    But it’s not all about baseball, also being a story of alcoholism, time travel and redemption.
    The book is set in Emporia, with a scene in El Dorado.
    “This is pretty special because it comes from a real publisher,” said Krause, who has written since he was little.
    “Since I was a little boy in El Dorado, I would get up in the morning and be on mom’s old typewriter,” he said. “Mom would holler up and call me Ernest because Ernest Hemingway always wrote in the morning.”
    He also was influenced by one of his friends, Bob Ades, who would talk to him about Stephen King books and got Krause interested in reading Stephen King books, as well as others.
    “The written word is my passion,” he said.
    His book is available through his Web site, www.storytellermatt.com, and on Amazon.com.
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