This novel was 8 years in the making: not because I wrote and edited constantly for 8 years. It was more because I was an undisciplined college student turned bachelor with a disposable income and cable TV. Thus, my writing was sporadic at best. With the loving push (shove really) by my wife, I sat down last year and cemented the story. While I waited for it to dry, I carved into the story some of the wonderful students and staff I’ve come across in my 8 years of teaching.
The inspiration for the novel came from a short-story I wrote one summer while working at a manager at Evendale Pool. In it, the Devil appeared to a marketing exec. while in the form of a Twinkie. This became a central scene in the novel, though the human character became a teacher instead.
Here’s a brief synopsis:
Reading Blue Devils follows Dieter Vogel, a failing English teacher, as he stirs up his students to overthrow the school mascot–Gretel the pretzel–so that the Devil could be enshrined in her place. In return, Dieter would finally receive the power and prestige he longed for as the school’s principal. He’d also win the heart of his crush, Esther Bishop. That was the plan…
But nothing in education ever really goes as planned.
While the students fight for a mascot, they uncover various injustices, both real and hyperbolized, that add deeper urgency and purpose to their revolution. Dieter sees himself finally getting close to everything he dreamed about since high school, but as the sitting principal, Walter Sanders, loses his mind as his school slips from his grip, things spiral out of control.
If this synopses doesn’t entice you, let me say this: there are quite a few penis jokes. If this actually turns you off from the book, let me say this: there’s a wonderful tale of redemption in this novel with many allusions to other stories, from classic literature and Scriptures. And if that doesn’t captivate you, let me say this: I’m sorry. Please give me a chance? (insert sad emoji of an English teacher who wrote his life into a story and just wants you to enjoy it).