Sam Hendricks – Author Interview

What is your most recent book? Tell us a bit about it.

Fantasy Football Basics: The Ultimate “How-To” Guide for Beginners is written for anyone who wants to know how to play fantasy football, but does not know where to start. It is a 150+ page, easy to understand manual for playing and succeeding at fantasy football. It is designed for the spouse, significant other, parent or grandparent that may be playing for the first time or wants to know more about the pastime that their loved one is playing.

Have you had any success playing fantasy football?

I play in numerous high stake leagues every year, including the World Championship of Fantasy Football (WCOFF), the National Championship of Fantasy Football (NFFC) and the Fantasy Football Players Championship (FFPC). In 2008, I finished seventh overall and in 2009 I finished 16th overall out of 228 top competitors in the FFPC. So, I put my money where my mouth is, since those tournaments each have entry fees in excess of $1,300 to play.

Tell us something about yourself.

I am an ex-fighter pilot who has played fantasy football for the past 20 years. I was lucky enough to find a Danish nurse who agreed to be my bride thirteen years ago while living in Saudi Arabia. I have four books on fantasy football out now and one on fantasy baseball on the way. I once participated in the “Running of the bulls” event at the festival of San Fermin in Pamplona, Spain.

What inspired you to write this book?

After writing previous books about fantasy football for players, I found there were plenty of spouses and parents not involved with the game that wanted to know what it was all about; many were afraid to buy the so called “dummy or idiot guides” that were popular a few years ago. They wanted a simple, functional and easy to implement system on how to learn and play fantasy football.

So I decided to help the others who wanted to know about fantasy football.

How did you publish this book? Why did you decide on that publisher?

Extra Point Press publishes all of my books. It is a small, independent publishing firm that takes things one-step at time. I know every detail will be handled to my satisfaction. My books are truly a “labor of love.” I write them to help people, not to make a million dollars. Although this should not be interpreted to mean that I am turning down the million dollars outright. LOL

How did you know you wanted to be a writer? How did you get started?

I retired from the fighter-pilot business and wanted to do more than play golf every day. I played fantasy football for most of my life (and played it well, I might add) and I could not find much in the way of books on the subject. Therefore, I made that my “raison d’être.” After Fantasy Football Guidebook came out, and did so well, I decided to follow-up on that success with other books and I have not looked back. In 2007 I un-retired and went back to work in the fighter training business again, but I still write part-time.

What do you believe is the hardest part of writing?

The roller coaster ride and the difficulties of the process. Going from the highs of finishing a chapter or an entire book to the lows of not making progress or realizing you have so much more to go. It can be intimidating.

How do you do research for your books?

Luckily, I have played the hobby of fantasy football for the past twenty years; so much of what I write is self-taught or personal experiences. My next book is Fantasy Baseball for Beginners: The Ultimate “How-To” Guide for Novices (Due out 1 October 2010.) I play fantasy baseball but not as much as football, so I will have to conduct more research for this book.

Tell us about your next book.

It will be for those who do not know anything about fantasy baseball but want to learn how to play. Not only play, but also not embarrass themselves while playing. The worst thing you can do is play a fantasy sport and not be competitive. That is the whole point of competition in a fantasy league, to beat good opponents not pushovers. Therefore, for those who may have agreed to play fantasy baseball in 2011…Here is your instruction manual on how to get started. Fantasy Baseball for Beginners includes easy to understand checklists for drafting your team, who to start each week, and also discusses what rules to expect, etiquette tips and resources to help you through out the season.

What are you reading now?

I hope to start The Scourge of God: A Novel of the Change by S.M. Stirling this week. It is the fifth in his change series, set in a world that lost electricity and gunpowder 20 years ago. I just finished 90 Minutes in Heaven: A True Story of Death and Life by Don Piper. I don’t want to sound melodramatic or anything, but that book is a life- changer. I have three friends waiting to read it.

What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors?

I like science fiction, the end-of-the-world genre and alternative fiction. Hence, I like S.M. Stirling and Harry Turtledove books. Give me an old-fashioned catastrophe to cripple the world and you have me hooked. It makes living in the present easier, knowing it could be much worse. That and thrillers by David Baldacci, Vince Flynn, Dan Brown or John Grisham. I would hate to leave a favorite author out.

What is the best advice you could give other writers about writing or publishing?

1) Always write something. Even if it is bad, it can be fixed. However, if you do not write anything you will fall into that pit of despair and it is harder to crawl out when you have a blank page.

2) Pick a time every day and devote an hour or more to writing.

3) Carry a PDA or notebook around to jot down ideas whenever they occur so you do not miss them.

4) Have lots of people look over your work before going to print. Be they editors, friends, reviewers, family, etc.

What are you doing to promote your latest book?

I advertise in fantasy sports magazines and participate in “Expert” drafts in the industry that showcase my abilities. Look for my rankings and projections in Fantasy Football Index and Pro Forecast Football magazines. I also contribute to a weekly “Ask the Expert” column on my blog at my website

Where can readers purchase your books?

All of my books are available at, and other online retailers where books are sold.

Fantasy Football Basics: The Ultimate “How-To” Guide for Beginners ($10.95)

Fantasy Football Tips: 201 Ways to Win Through Player Rankings, Cheat Sheets and Better Drafting ($10.95)

Fantasy Football Guidebook: Your Comprehensive Guide to Playing Fantasy Football (2nd Edition) ($19.95)