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"Make It, Take It," by Rus Bradburd

Make It, Take It, Rus Bradburd
Cinco Punto Press

Jeff Glor talks to Rus Bradburd about, "Make It, Take It."

Jeff Glor: What inspired you to write the book?

Rus Bradburd: I met Robert Boswell, the writer, my first week coaching at New Mexico State. I loved books, and the idea of writing about college ball grew out of taking classes from him and his wife, Antonya Nelson. What's always interested me about basketball was the stories, the human interaction -- much more so than the games and the stats. In 2000 I got my courage up and quit coaching, after 14 seasons in Division I.

JG: What surprised you the most during the writing process?

RB: I began writing the book to explain what it was like to live in the world of college hoops. But pretty soon I discovered that I was writing to understand what had happened to me, to clarify my own life. When a reporter asked presidential candidate Adlai Stevenson a question in the 1950s, his response was, "I don't know, I haven't written about it yet." That answer feels very true to me now, although it was quite a surprise when I first realized it myself.

JG: What would you be doing if you weren't a writer?

RB: Coaching college basketball again, and doing a poor job, because I wouldn't have the energy anymore. Or coaching back in Ireland, which I loved -- it was the job that inspired my first book, "Paddy on the Hardwood."

JG: What else are you reading right now?

RB: "The Heyday of the Insensitive Bastards," Robert Boswell's latest story collection. Sounds like a basketball title, huh? And I received an advance copy of David Shields' new book, "How Literature Saved My Life," which is great. I guess those titles sort of some up my two careers up to now, right?

JG: What's next for you?

RB: I'm deep into writing a comic novel set at a major university, a school that has been taken over by the football team. I guess you could say it's comic fiction based in realism.

For more on "Make It, Take It" visit his website.