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William Patrick Kinsella

Success did not come easily to William Patrick Kinsella. Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Kinsella says that he always thought of himself as a writer, though he wrote more than 50 stories before getting published. He also worked at various odd jobs, such as running his own pizza restaurant, managing a credit agency, and driving a taxicab. Kinsella did not begin college until he was in his 30s.

Kinsella grew up loving the game of baseball, though he was a poor player himself. He penned his first baseball story, a murder mystery called "Diamond Doom," when he was in the eighth grade. Kinsella published his first collection of baseball stories, Shoeless Joe Jackson Comes to Iowa, in 1980. He expanded the title story into his award-winning novel Shoeless Joe (1982), which garnered much attention when it was adapted and produced as the 1989 Hollywood movie Field of Dreams.