Text

This Year in Writing: 2013

Here is a (small) collection of things I wrote for various publications. There is no order to this except for how I collected the links. 

Here goes. 

On Monday, In Boston [The Classical]

Fallen MIT police officer Sean Collier remembered as a friend and determined young man [MassLive.com]

AWARDS & HONORS: 2012 NATIONAL HUMANITIES MEDALIST
Frank Deford [The National Endowment for the Humanities]

Robbie Rogers, Out and Out [The Classical]

The Time That Kendrick Lamar Took Over My Brain [Complex]

Kelyn Rowe: A Budding MLS Star Prepares for 2013 [American Soccer Now]

Trap/Defense: The Basketball and Rap Lives of Marquis Daniels [The Classical] 

Be Here Now [The Classical]

Worcester’s Timothy Ritchie finishes 25th in Boston Marathon, but is more impressed with human spirit shown in wake of bombing [MassLive.com]

Matt Reis’ comeback has sparked the New England Revolution [ESPNFC] 

EDUCATED CHEESE [Sports on Earth]

THE WONDERBREWER OF NOWHERESVILLE [Narratively]

PAUL PIERCE’S FALL [Sports on Earth]

Worcester native Tim Collins silences doubters, makes his mark with Kansas City Royals [MassLive.com]

REVOLUTION SHARE GLOWING PRAISE FOR RETIRED REIS [Soccer By Ives]

Worcester funeral director Peter Stefan, upset by secrecy of Boston bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s burial, continues to go about his business [MassLive.com]

Link

This is an amazing series by David Roth (Part 2 Here). 

"David Roth traveled to Qatar for a closer look at the World Cup’s future home. Here is the second installment of his five-part series."

To bring the World Cup to Qatar, the emir is prepared to spend hundreds of times what his sister spends on art; one estimate places the total associated costs at around $220 billion, with a fucking B. 

Link

A personal essay I wrote for Complex about trying to interview Kendrick Lamar. 

Text

Frank Deford: What I’ve Learned

(Photo from The Atlantic)

Earlier this year I was asked to write a story on Frank Deford’s career for the National Endowment for the Humanities. Deford was named one of the 2012 National Humanities Medalists and I was asked to write 800 words on Deford’s life, career and legacy. It wasn’t easy. Writing about a legend is never easy, and it shouldn’t be. They’re a legend for a reason and I’m a nobody for a reason. 

Speaking with Deford eased my misery and fears, though. We spoke for nearly and hour and I was heartbroken to only get 800 words to write about him. His quotes alone deserved more than that. I did my best to bring his life and career to light, but I had to leave so much out. Now, I am sharing some of the best things he told me. 

Read More

Link

A story I wrote for Narratively about Hill Farmstead’s brewer Shaun Hill for Narratively.

"It’s all because of neurotic, psychotic issues, need for perfection, low self-esteem, overcompensating," says Hill. "The greatest misconception people have is that I’m some sort of arrogant asshole, where it’s the opposite of that. I just take what I do extremely serious because that’s the kind of person that I am.

“People my whole life have mistaken intensity and directness for ego and, like, arrogance basically, which is totally unfair. If people just come down to earth and talk to you they realize, but instead they don’t. I know lots of people that are the same way. “There are people who are very laid back and sort of ‘whatever’ and let shit go wrong and not be right. It’s just a different way of living.”

Link

I was asked to write this. It was a lot of fun, but really hard to get this man’s life and importance in sports writing into 800 words.

Link

There is a reason why Marquis Daniels does not necessarily want to talk about his rap career, and it’s not because he can’t rap.

In the folkloric world of NBA hip-hop, where overstatement and mythos are everything—Elton Brand has six albums of perfect material he’ll never release; Stephen Jackson is secretly the best rapper alive—and the actual audible music is mostly a bummer, Daniels has a solid reputation and a mixtape track record that mostly backs it up. He is not the first or certainly the most famous basketball player to take a turn on the mic. Shaquille O’Neal, Allen Iverson and The Artist Formerly Known As Ron Artest all put out whole albums, which is not quite the same thing as saying that anyone should listen to those albums. Kobe Bryant and Tony Parker both have some truly harrowing singles to their credit. Marquis Daniels, in the studio as on the court, is a different story.

A profile I wrote of NBA small forward/guard Marquis Daniels for the awesome Classical

Text

Some stuff I wrote this year

This was a busy year. It wasn’t as busy as I had hoped, but it was still the busiest I’ve ever had as a writer and journalist. I ran a newspaper all year by myself and still found time to write plenty of other stuff — mostly about soccer — for plenty of other sites. Here’s a few things I wrote this year.

Glen Stout Lives Way Up There — The Classical

KCKRS Interview: Leander Schaerlaeckens Talks About His Profile Of David Testo — KCKRS

A Path Less Travelled (Zak Boggs’s Journey) — New England Soccer Today

We’ve made it this far: Taking a wider look at where US Soccer stands with Alexi Lalas —  A Football Report

The Hydra — Worcester Mag

Revolution Revisited: Taylor Twellman — New England Soccer Today

Revolution Revisited: Adin Brown — New England Soccer Today

Two Minutes With…Bob Cousy — Worcester Mag

Looking back: Bane Worcester and hardcore 10 years later — Worcester Mag

Text

My Favorite LongReads of 2012

BY Kevin Koczwara

This was the year that Internet publishing leaped out in front and flexed its muscle in the writing world. It’s also the year where the celebrity profile seemingly died off a beautiful death, slowly but surely they seem to get shorter and shorter and I get more and more grateful with every copy of GQ and Esquire that slides through my door once a month.

Sports writing hit an all-time high this year. Grantlad pushed the boundaries early on, but then sites like The Classical (disclaimer: I have written for them and currently working a piece for them) and SB Nation Longform. 

Here are a few of my favorites, but certainly not all of them. 

One of my favorite columns of the year came from The Classical editor David Roth, except it was featured on Sports on Earth. "DEATH OF THE UNDERDOGS" was a perfect piece about how the MLB postseason became predictable and yet perfect in some sort of way because we still had baseball. 

Speaking of Roth and The Classical, one of my favorite pieces on soccer this year came early in the year by Moacir P. De. SÁ Pereira. Pereia wrote about the evolution of French Club PSG and its fan-culture, which I knew was off the wall and scary, but I didn’t know all of the details and this five-part series shed more light than I thought possible on the team and its culture.

My favorite piece I read (and waited for to arrive in my mailbox) was Chris Jones’ story on the Zanesville, Ohio animal massacre in the March edition of Esquire.

My favorite celebrity profile was Chris Heath’s profile of Micahel Fassbender in the June edition of GQ. Fassbender is a supremely talented actor, and yet still a mystery despite this revealing, and somewhat short, profile of the up-and-coming movie star. 

Mark Sundeen’s piece in Outsider "WHY NOAH WENT TO THE WOODS" blew me away and still has me thinking. 

Finally, "Coach" William Browning on SB Nation’s new longform site took my breath away from start to finish.  

And then there is the masterwork done by Charles Pierce “The Bomb That Didn’t Go Off” from Esquire. A must-read on the way homegrown terrorism has grown and continues to grow. There is no one better than Pierce when it comes to telling the story of modern America and the craziness.

There were plenty more, I just can’t think of them now. 

Kevin Koczwara (me) is a journalist in Massachusetts. He has contributed to The Classical, New England Soccer Today, MLSSoccer.com, NESN.com and other places. 

Link

I wrote a story about Zak Boggs, former New England Revolution midfielder, for New England Soccer Today. He’s currently a Fulbright Scholar still playing soccer and hoping to return to playing when he gets home in the spring.

As a teenager, Boggs constantly kept the soccer ball at his feet during the two-mile walk to school in the morning. The long walk to school was the regular trip to Parkersburg High School in Vienna, WV, but dribbling a ball en route was not. It made him the social outcast. At the time, football and wrestling were popular sports in Vienna, but Boggs – whose father played at Hamilton College in New York – never abandoned the sport he loved.