From the April 2008 Madrona News
In April 2003, Jackie Koney was about to board a flight out of SeaTac airport when her cell phone rang. Reluctantly, she took the call.
“I was just handing over my boarding pass when the phone rang,” Jackie said about that fateful phone call from her friend, Madrona’s Deidre Silva. “When I answered, she blurted out ‘We should write a baseball book together!’ I knew she was on to something and that we were the right people to do it.”
The two had been thinking of working on a book together but it was DeidreÃ??Ã?Â¢??s call that helped them hone in on a topic that they both were passionate about. Calling themselves the Savvy Girls of Summer, Deidre and Jackie worked for the next few years to bring female baseball enthusiasts together for fun and fandom. Along the way they also found time to write “It Takes More Than Balls: The Savvy Girl’s Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Baseball.” Released in March, the book is now featured on the shelves of bookstores nationwide and the two authors couldn’t be prouder.
“We have read dozens of baseball books and so few of them really embraced the entertainment and fun that we think is an important part of being a baseball fan,” Deidre said. “We wanted to write the baseball book that we wanted to read.”
During the time they spent researching the book Deidre and Jackie talked to thousands of women baseball fans. This led to them partnering with major league baseball teams–first the Mariners and then others–to help the teams tailor events and promotions geared to women. The authors were honored guests at several “Ladies Nights” promotions, and pre-game wine-and-cheese parties with presentations from female sports industry team executives or journalists. These events at several major leave baseball teams are the backbone of this summerÃ??Ã?Â¢??s nation-wide book tour. The authors will return to Seattle in August and host a pre-game event with the Mariners and Safeco Insurance on August 26.
Savvier than ever, through their research Deidre and Jackie have found many differences between how most men and women regard baseball. Because most women never had the opportunity or inclination to play baseball in their youth, female fans tend to “discover” baseball later in life than do men. Some women become enthralled sitting in the stands as Little League moms, while others catch the bug from–or to impress–a new date or an old husband.
“Women often bring a different perspective to the game,” Jackie said. “And these women are a sophisticated group and they don’t need a ‘Baseball for Dummies.’ Rather, these smart women want a smart book–and we think our new book is just the ticket!”