How Vagabond Blues came to be:

Emmanuel writes:

“In 1981, I had been under contract with the L.A, Thunderbolts football club when it folded. I had given myself a deadline of three-years to make it into the National Football League, and after three years of free agent tryouts, the Thunderbolts had been my last and best chance of reaching the N.F.L. Adhering to my self-imposed deadline I hung up my dream. 

“Not long after my decision to move on with my live post-football, I received a call to come play in a league that was transforming itself from a semipro league into a legitimate Minor League organization for the purpose of becoming a steppingstone to the N.F.L. It was an offer I could not pass up.  

“Prior to the phone call, I had been contemplating what to do career wise. Although I did not how one went about a writing career, a writing career intrigued me. Ever since English class in my sophomore year of high school and my introduction to poetry, and to the short stories of Ernest Hemingway and his lifestyle, I had been smitten by the written word and the romance of writing and traveling the world. It took hold. 

“In the fall of 1981, having accepted the offer, I found myself in a small city in Northern California sitting at a raised circular bar with a teammate in the windowless drinking hole called the Sports Tavern. We were looking out over what would become our new teammates. It was a motley group. The team had yet to officially assemble and players from all over the country continued to arrive and the tavern had become the teams port o call. 

“Looking out over my new teammates it dawned upon me that we were no longer college players playing for the old college spirit. No, we were all mercenaries. It reminded me of scenes from pirate movies where all the pirates sat drinking and singing songs: a rough crew, waiting to set sail in search of pirate booty. We were that crew. We were nothing more than pirates in search of pieces-of-eight, except our treasure was an NFL contract. I turned to my new teammate and said I am going to write about these guys. My new teammate asked, ‘oh yeah, what are you going to call it’ and I replied, ‘Vagabond Blues.’

Now available in ebook as a preorder.