Basketball season was starting and, after my first practice, I was selected to start on our team. I loved the attention. I was the only kid on the team who wanted his parents to show up for the games. The reason was simple: my mom was beautiful and young, and my dad was tough-looking and muscular and looked like a kid. I wanted to show them off.
The season was great, and I was one of the best players in the league. The kids at school would talk to me about the games and about how good I was; it felt amazing to have people counting on me each game. The girls noticed me even though I was barely ten years old but I was very shy when it came to the opposite sex.
Katrina was her name—my first crush. She had beautiful, long, straight blonde hair and a killer smile. In class, I would stare at her out of the corner of my eye. Once I noticed her, I promised myself that I would talk with her someday. I just had to work up the courage. Guess again! Third grade and fourth grade passed and still not a single word!
Was it possible that the girl of my dreams would get away?
I couldn’t believe that two years had gone by, and I still hadn’t even spoken to Katrina.
How was it that my basketball team won the championship two years in a row, I started as the pitcher for the Little League’s National League Rockies, got straight A’s in school, and had tons of friends, but still could not talk to a girl? Hard to believe that even with so much success, I still couldn’t do it. I will work the courage up one day, I thought. After all, I was only eleven.
scholar or a perfect writer to put your heart on paper even when it
is hurting the most. James’s experiences have inspired him to tell
his story in order to reach young readers suffering from insecurity,
sadness, and addiction. Not only did James drop out of high school,
but he also stumbled into deep depression early in his adolescent
life. Although he had been an all-star athlete, he was far from
happy. He ended up making regrettable choices in order to feel a
sense of belonging and worth, especially following his parents’
separation. Through it all, James knew that one day he was going to
share his “misery” with the world. He struggled through
life’s lessons and finally put himself through college to earn a
business degree and currently has a successful career in sales. James
finished his first rough draft at twenty-five while in college. Five
years later he erased all 200,000 words and started from scratch. He
currently resides in Woburn, Massachusetts, where he continues to
thrive and develop his writing.
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