Over on the Curzon blog, our newest member Emlyn Rees has written an interesting post about his plans for a Wimbledon thriller. That set me to thinking about an interesting question. Why aren't there more sports thrillers?
Dick Francis, of course, made a great career of writing about horse racing. But there are very few thrillers about football, tennis, boxing, formula one, and so on. It is odd. Sport is full of drama and conflict and double-dealing, all the stuff of stories, and has a huge following.
Maybe no one has really tried. One of the projects in my drawer is a football thriller that Random House made a very low offer on at the same time as I started the Death Force series for Headline. So maybe it is just a matter of waiting for the right author to come along. But maybe its because it is impossible to write about sport in a way that doesn't seem flat compared to the real thing? The spectacle itself is so dramatic, it is hard for a writer to match the intensity of the contest. If so, there never will be a really great sports thriller.