Hey everyone, it’s been a really busy week and I know I owe you guys a new Project Jericho. That will be up this coming Tuesday I promise. Today, however, I wanted to do something special and give everyone a sneak peek at the book I’m working on for a summer release. I have a finalized cover and the book is about 3/4 of the way finished.
I love the story I’ve crafted here. This project has been near and dear to me, so taking my time to get it right and presented well has been the number one focus. I’ve taken a step away from the normal sci-fi, fantasy, superhero stuff to bring you a boxing-drama tale. Working closely with a boxer (who wishes to remain anonymous due to some of the situations presented in the book), the two of us have brought a story to life that I think is heart warming, pulse pounding, and most importantly, real experience.
The following excerpt is actually chapter 12 in the draft. The scene is from the first major fight in the book, so I hope you enjoy. But first, let’s get a cover reveal and a title shall we?
**WKMG – Broadcast**
“Welcome back and for those of you just tuning in, you’re just in time for tonight’s main event. Again, I’m your man Dougie Fitchner and calling the fight with me as always is Mack Kelso.”
“Dougie, I’m looking forward to this barn burner tonight. One guy is a young gun looking to make a name for himself and the other guy is an old vet looking to return to the spot light. You can’t beat that!”
“You’re preaching to the choir Mack. As we’re getting ready for David Hunter and Oliver Callahan to tangle for ten rounds for the vacant North American light heavyweight title, do you have any prefight predictions for me Mack?”
“This is a real dog of a fight to pick. Do you take youth or experience? I guess if you held a gun to my head, I’d pick Hunter by late round knockout.”
“I gotta disagree with you there. I’m taking the experience and picking Callahan by judge’s decision. Something tells me Callahan’s going to be looking to show the world something tonight.”
“Dougie, I hope you’re right. The kid got a bullshit deal before and if his head’s on right, he’s a dangerous man. I know he put Dirk Hagger down a few months ago, but this would be a huge step up with a victory tonight.”
“We can analyze a bit more after the fighter’s introductions. Let’s head down to the ring to ‘The Voice of Boxing’ Victor Armani. Take it away Victor!”
“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to your main event! Without further ado, let’s meet our fighters. In the red corner, from Eerie, Pennsylvania with a record of nineteen wins and no loses, David ‘Big Game’ Hunter! And in the blue corner, from Harmon, Pennsylvania with a record of thirty-two wins and four loses, Oliver Callahan!”
**WKMG – Broadcast**
“Listen to that crowd Dougie! They absolutely love Callahan!”
“Why wouldn’t they Mack? He’s something of a hero in Western Pennsylvania. I feel bad for Hunter, whose hometown has turned against him tonight.
“A very interesting turn of events indeed. With that, we’re going to take a quick break with a word from our sponsors, but don’t go anywhere. When you get back, it’s Callahan versus Hunter, right here on WKMG!”
Hunter and I were sent to our corners; probably for a commercial break or something before the fight starts. Taking one last drink of water, “We got this Ricky.”
“I know we do Olli. Remember, you’re probably going to take a few punches in the beginning, but stick to the plan. Use your speed and get a few combos in and then get out. He loves his right hook and if we can make him pay for throwing it, we will.”
Playing it over in my mind, wait for the left hand to drop and throw a punch before he can hit me with his. I felt the juices flowing as the crowd began chanting and singing. “Your dad used to tell me to put some more mustard behind my punches. You think he’s yelling at me right now?”
“I can hear the old man now. ‘Use your damn head Olli! Put some more mustard behind those jabs you big dumb bastard!’ Yeah, wherever he is, he’s yelling at you.”
The commercial break must’ve ended as the ref was walking into position. Putting in my mouth guard and gathering my final thoughts, I made my way to the center of the ring.
**WKMG – Broadcast**
“And with the sound of the bell, the fight is on! Mack, what are tonight’s keys to the fight?”
“First thing Callahan has to do is establish his jab. He needs to keep the bigger man off him as much as possible.”
“Like he was listening to you Mack, Callahan fires off two quick jabs that connect! His hand speed looks really good to me. Callahan follows up by stalking Hunter down, but I don’t know if that’s the smart thing to do.”
“I agree Dougie, Callahan needs to stay out of Hunter’s range. He’s knocked out seventeen of his nineteen opponents, fifteen before they ever made it to the fourth round.”
“Big one-two combination from Hunter that rocks Callahan’s head. That doesn’t stop though as he keeps firing off jabs, trying to keep Hunter honest.”
“I like the aggression, but all those jabs are doing is annoying Hunter. You need to get a multi-hit combo in there or throw a punch with some juice.”
“Callahan loads up on a right hand and misses. He seems to be listening to you tonight Mack.”
“We’re halfway through the first round Dougie and neither guy has really made a statement yet.”
“I get that bad feeling that Hunter is setting Callahan up in a trap. Two jabs from Hunter, but Callahan blocks them nicely. Callahan tries to fire back, but gets caught in the chin with a big left hand. I don’t think Callahan is hurt, but he sure felt Hunter’s power on that shot.”
“I felt that punch up here! Did you see his head buckle under the weight of the shot?”
“Absolutely, Hunter scared big with that punch. Thirty seconds to go in the round, Hunter paws at Callahan with his right hand. Swing and a miss from Hunter and Callahan follows up with two rights and a left! Hunter eats the shots to the head and returns fire with a right uppercut. Both guys are swinging away as the round comes to a close!”
“That’s how you end a round! Did you see that right hook by Hunter? I think Callahan’s eye is already busted open!”
“Blood is starting to drip down, which might affect his vision in the later rounds. There’s the bell and that’s the end of an action packed round one! Mack, how did you score that round?”
“I give round one to Hunter. Both guys landed their shots, but Hunter hit harder and busted Callahan’s left eye open. So in my opinion, that beats up the number of punches Callahan landed.”
“I give the round to Hunter too. Callahan certainly didn’t box poorly, but Hunter had some bad intentions at the end of the round.”
“Both his left and right hands are like sledgehammers. And let’s not overlook the fact he probably outweighs Callahan by twenty pounds. If I had to guess, after weigh-in, he rehydrated to close to two bills.”
“What Mack is trying to say ladies and gentlemen is tonight we have a light heavyweight versus a heavyweight. It’s a part of boxing and we will just have to see how Callahan adjusts to that.”
“Ricky, this guy has to be over two hundred pounds! My punches aren’t doing a damn thing to him!”
He was putting paste on my cut to get the bleeding to stop. “I heard he cuts a lot of weight before the weigh-in, but I never expected this. You’re going to have to box on the outside. Getting too close will only lead to you getting your head taken off.”
“If I don’t get close, how am I supposed to set him up?”
“Olli, you’re going to have to outbox him to win this one. I don’t think anyone’s knocking this behemoth out.”
Taking another hit of water before putting my mouthpiece back in, I didn’t want to listen to Ricky. I knew going rouge on my trainer’s advice could have bad consequences, but I knew only one way to fight. The ring girl was exiting to the cheers of the crowd and the second round was about to start.
**WKMG – Broadcast**
“The bell sounds and the second round is under way. Mack, what do you think Callahan’s trainer told him in between rounds?”
“If I was Ricky Irons, I’d tell my guy to stay as far away from this monster as humanly possible.”
“Well if he did, Callahan isn’t taking the advice. He came out of his corner like lightning, throwing jabs like they’re going out of style.”
“Nothing like a good aggressive start to get the crowd jazzed, but he needs to be careful. He’s in the pocket and it’s only a matter of time before Hunter finds the range again.”
“Two lefts followed by a right with Hunter just taking the shots to the ribs. I don’t think he was prepared for Callahan to come out like this, especially after getting cut at the end of round one. Two more lefts by Callahan kiss Hunter on the cheek. He’s almost landing at will Mack!”
“He needs to stick and move. He’s had success, but he can’t stay there too much longer.”
“Looking over at Callahan’s corner, I think Ricky is with you Mack. But Callahan’s not backing down! Right hook connects!”
“He’s left himself wide open for a counter Dougie!”
“Huge right hook by Hunter lands on that bad eye! Callahan’s in trouble now. Two more right hands and OH MY GOD! Oliver Callahan falls to the canvas! The ref’s starting the ten count!”
“I’m not psychic Dougie, but everyone should’ve seen that coming!”
“Callahan’s up at eight and the ref’s going to let him keep going. He’s got less than a minute to survive the round! Can he do it Mack?”
“He needs to get on his bike and get the hell away from Hunter. He smells blood in the water and like a shark, he’s coming to finish him off!”
“Split Decision: The Story of Oliver Callahan” will be out late spring/early summer. Stay tuned for more information in the coming months.