I’m often asked to name the hardest of my six books to write—and here’s the clear-cut winner. I’m very proud of Love Me, Hate Me, but, well, it was a beast. First, Barry Bonds is an incredibly hard nut to crack. He’s guarded, he’s off-putting, he’s weird, he’s strange, he’s fun, he’s mean, he’s… 1,001 contradictions. This made him fascinating, but also perplexing. He acted as if he didn’t care what people thought about him—but he cared terribly.
The greatest roadblock was likeability. I felt like, over the course of two years, I kept trying (and failing) to find people who liked Barry Bonds. They’d exist here and there, but the hate/like ration was—no exaggeration—roughly 250/1. I kept looking and looking and looking before, ultimately, giving up.
Heading toward the release date, I thought Love Me, Hate Me would be a huge seller. Barry was in the news, I’d researched the hell out of the project… it all added up, in my mind, to large sales figures.
Then, two weeks before Love Me, Hate Me hit shelves, Sports Illustrated ran a riveting cover excerpt of Game of Shadows, the remarkable investigation into Bonds’ PED history. That book soared to No. 1 on the New York Times list.
Mine can be found on $1 shelves everywhere…