’What if I Don’t Make the Team?’ Former Eastern Kentucky coach writes children’s book

Published: Oct. 21, 2020 at 8:01 PM EDT
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PAINTSVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) - Kayla VanHoose has been around sports all her life.

“J.R. and I have made some of our greatest relationships because of a bouncing ball,” said Kayla VanHoose.

From playing volleyball at Sheldon Clark, to coaching at Johnson Central, to marrying 1998 Mr. Basketball J.R. VanHoose, she has learned the importance of sports and the skills they provide children.

“I don’t think people realize the weight of athletics especially in Eastern Kentucky. He can keep a child out of a drug problem.”

With one of her dreams of always wanting to write a book, Kayla VanHoose got her chance during quarantine.

“Anybody who knows me knows that I have too many irons in the fire and I don’t usually have enough time to do extra stuff and I was forced to go to the house for a while so I had to find something to keep my self busy,” said VanHoose.

“What if I Don’t Make the Team” was written, illustrated, and published here in Eastern Kentucky, with the characters based off some from the region.

“The characters kind of look like anywhere from King Kelly to David Jones even my husband JR is in it. Our daughter Taylor,” VanHoose added.

Unlike most children’s books, VanHoose’s focuses on a failure athletes might face, but puts a positive spin on how to adapt and overcome such an event.

“My book is about not making a team,” said VanHoose. “Children’s books are often a lot of fluff and rainbows and everything positive. While this is a positive book it’s a positive spin on a failure we don’t often talk about.”

The book will be available for pre-order Friday with sales beginning the week after on Amazon.

You can also order personalized signed books through VanHoose’s website. She hopes to have around eight books in her series.

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