May 17, 2018

Table Tennis vs. Science Fiction Writing
Outside table tennis I also write science fiction - see and my bibliography. (Short version - 90 short stories sold, 4 novels, and 2 short story collections. I have a story coming out in the next issue of Analog.) However, table tennis is still the main priority and it pays the most of the bills, both coaching and writing (eight books).

I started a new science fiction novel last week, but every time I tried working on it, some table tennis issue came up and I'd put it aside. There was the Hall of Fame program; researching some history and photos for one of this year's Hall of Fame inductees; a USATT Board of Directors teleconference; proofing some USATT documents; an ongoing confidential issue I've hinted about and spent nearly 100 hours on and can't wait to blog about hopefully this summer; some Coaching Chair issues; planning out junior training group sessions; preparing Tim Boggan's History of U.S. Table Tennis, Vol. 21, for online publication; finalizing the flyers for the upcoming Serve and Receive Tactics seminars I'm running at MDTTC and at the Nationals in Las Vegas; writing up player evaluations on local juniors; prep work for the upcoming Maryland State Championships I'm running; a new proposal regarding hidden serves; lots of TT email correspondence; and of course the usual blogging and Tips of the Week. And all this was just since Monday! 

I came to a decision yesterday to put aside the novel (for now) and focus more on table tennis and short stories. Writing a novel takes a lot of immersion, where you focus on it for 3-6 months to get the first draft done, and then spend up to a year rewriting and editing it. Short stories are easier to get into, and it's far easier to jump back and forth between them and TT.

So I'll be able to focus more on table tennis again. Soon I'll read and update my notes for "Parent's Guide to Table Tennis," and then work on it during my one-week writing/reading "vacation" in Las Vegas between the World Veterans and the Nationals. I'll be writing up a storm at the World Veterans, with multiple stories every day, some on event coverage, others features on players and other issues.

Eventually I will also get around to doing the photos needed for Table Tennis Fundamentals. I'd like to get them done later this year, and hopefully write it next year. It would be a greatly expanded version of my previous Table Tennis: Steps to Success.

On a related note, we have 16-20 juniors from MDTTC flying 3000 miles to the USA Nationals this year, including the #1, #3, and #4 players in Under 10 Boys. So I'll be spending a bunch of time over the next month watching them in matches to prepare for coaching them at the Nationals. Tomorrow night I'll be at the Friday night league to watch and take notes. (But tonight, right after I coach the Thursday night junior class, it's Deadpool time!)

Thailand Open
Here's the home page for the event, which takes place in Bangkok, THA, May 16-20. Here are highlights from the first day: Kang Eunji vs He Zebao (Qual) (2:36).

Footwork Patterns Part 4
Here's the article, with links to video, by EmRatThich. "Footwork is very important in table tennis. It’s one of the fundamental techniques in table tennis that every player should learn first. Today, we learn the 4 main footwork patterns in table tennis."

Epic Block Technique
Here's the video (1:44). It's in Chinese, but is still good viewing.

The Realities of Table Tennis Addiction
Here's the article by Coach Jon.

WAB Club Feature: Bridgeport Sports Club
Here's the article featuring this club in Richmond, just South of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada, by Steve Hopkins.

Li Jiao Leaves Coaching Post to Return to China
Here's the ITTF article. "Crowned European champion on two occasions and the winner of the Women’s Singles gold medal at the 2015 European Games, Li Jiao led the Netherlands to great success in her playing days. Fast-forward to May 2018 - Li Jiao has now announced her departure from her role as head coach of the Dutch women's team."

Focus on Fundamentals, Kuala Lumpur Responds
Here's the ITTF article. "Staged at the Expert Swing Table Tennis Center; Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia was the recent home for an ITTF/PTT Level One Coaches Course."

ITTF Opens Bidding for 2019 Challenge Series
Here's the ITTF article.

Young Timo Boll - Damien Delobbe 1998 YOUTH TOP 12
Here's the video (4:46) from Arnaud Scheen.

Ping-Pong in Virtual Reality (Fail)
Here's the video (35 sec)!

Can You Play Ping-Pong with KITCHEN ITEMS?
Here's the video (4 min)!

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