Maggie Vaults Over the Moon


Leave a comment

Sport Psychologist Helps Vaulters and Coaches Cope with COVID-19 Shutdown

Sport psychologist ‘Doctor Coach’ Melissa White helps athletes achieve their goals on the runway and in life. She created a video for pole-vault coaches with suggestions on how to help athletes cope with closed runways and broken dreams. (Photo by Megan Zeller/Mile Split)

GREENSBURG, PA. — It’s been a heartbreaking spring for athletes whose sports seasons were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but a pole-vault coach with a doctorate in sport psychology has a prescription to help cope with the ongoing crisis.

“Doctor Coach” Melissa White has been making virtual “house calls” to help athletes process their grief and prepare for whatever comes next. Her Performance Edge Consulting practice helps athletes overcome obstacles and achieve their goals, even in a time of historic hardship and uncertainty.

“Anything you can say that can keep your athletes focused and mentally ready for the sport and looking forward to it is going to be the best option for them,” Dr. White says.

When she’s not teaching 6th Grade English at Wendover Middle School, White is the high school and middle school pole-vault and javelin coach at Hempfield Area High School in the Pittsburgh Metro Area in Western Pennsylvania. She also spent this past fall as the mental performance coach for the school’s varsity football team.

White recently posted a video specifically for pole-vault coaches with suggestions on how to help athletes cope with closed runways and broken dreams. The video is free to watch by following this link.

“Our athletes rely on us and depend on us during every training session, practice session and every competition and we need to there for them at this time.” (Photos by Derrick Cleveland)

“We’re dealing with a crazy, unprecedented situation right now,” says White. “There are no books, no guidelines, no articles on how to deal with sport during a worldwide pandemic. We’re all trying to figure this out as we go along. I’ve had a lot of coaches and athletes reach out the me. And I thought I’d share some of what I’ve shared with them with you.

“One of the things that coaches have asked me is, ‘What should I should say to my athletes? I’m just unsure how to approach the situation.’ Several of the coaches have said, ‘I’ve said nothing. I didn’t want to share the wrong thing.’ That’s not the right answer.”

Since the pandemic shut-down, White has met with senior athletes who lost their seasons through virtual online meetings. Each of them have issues to cope with, depending on how committed they were to their sport, and what their future holds once things get back to normal-ish. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Make it a Maggie Christmas!

Give the teens on your list the hope-filled gift of a Maggie Christmas.

 “A fine young adult novel about perseverance in sports and in life.” — KIRKUS

Looking for a motivational gift this holiday season?

Inspire them with a Maggie Christmas!

"I've probably read it more than 20 times. I will never get tired of reading it over and over again and again," writes Taylor Millsap, 14, of Illinois.

“I will never get tired of reading it over and over again and again.” — Taylor Millsap.

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is the story of a courageous teen, Maggie Steele, who finds the strength to overcome a tragedy and rise to new heights as a pole-vaulter. It’s epic!

Kirkus Reviews calls the story, “A fine young adult novel about perseverance in sports and in life.”

Hope over hardship is the central message of  Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.

“Maggie transported me back to my childhood..." -- John Rinkenbaugh.

“Maggie instantly transported me back to my childhood.” — John Rinkenbaugh.

Maggie instantly transported me back to my childhood,” writes John Rinkenbaugh, a TV producer and former Kansas farm boy. “It will translate to anyone who allows themselves to be young at heart.”

Do you have someone on your list who needs to be inspired this holiday season?

Chicken Soup for the Soul and Guideposts contributor, Nancy Julien Kopp says Maggie  is “Heartwarming and realistic, this book is a winner!”

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon can be sent as an eBook or gift-wrapped paperback, along with your personalized message, through Amazon.com. The book also is available direct from Grain Valley Publishing.

Order your copies today!

Future greats Kendall Reynolds, left, and Zoe Bechard with three-time Olympian Earl Bell.


Leave a comment

Help Athletes Dream Big With ‘Maggie!’

‘Maggie’ inspired scores of athletes to follow their dreams. Author Grant Overstake presented his novel to vaulters at the Wichita Catholic League Championships.

A perfect read for track season, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon has become an instant classic that has inspired many young athletes to soar.

Like the gritty heroine Maggie Steele, the goal for every prep track athlete is the State Championships such as this one in Kansas, one of the largest in the nation.

Heroine Maggie Steele is a gritty farm girl who finds herself on a quest to soar waaay higher than her critics think a girl should dare to go. A flight of magical realism with breathtaking descriptions of a totally awesome sport, the novel is a rewarding read for mid-grade to adults.

The story begins on a Kansas wheat farm and climaxes at the Kansas State High School Track and Field Championships, which, with more than 3,000 competitors and 20,000 spectators, is one of the largest track meets in the nation.

Legendary track coach Dennis Bolt has coached at Hillsboro (KS) High School for over 25 years. And during that time, hundreds of his athletes have qualified for the state track meet, including some 40+ state champions! Bolt’s boys’ and girls’ teams have won several class 3A team titles. In recognition, Bolt was honored as the National Federation Boys Coach of the Year in 2004. Here’s what he has to say about, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon: Continue reading


Leave a comment

Maggie is Too Cool for School!

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is a recommended back-to-school read for Teens.

BookWorks Publisher’s Weekly has placed Maggie Vaults Over the Moon on its back-to-school reading list! The novel was selected as a “Too Cool for School” book for Teens. In recommending the story, the editors said the novel is “An uplifting story of a young heroine who copes with loss and grief by literally hurling herself skyward as a competitive pole vaulter.” That’s too cool for school! Order your copy at major booksellers, or, even better, through Watermark Books & Cafe, Maggie’s favorite independent bookstore!

 


Leave a comment

Maggie’s Tavia Gilbert Earns ‘Audie’ Audiobook Industry’s Highest Award

‘Maggie’ voice actress and producer Tavia Gilbert is a marquee talent in the audiobook world.

GRAIN VALLEY, KAN. — Folks in this iconic farming community are bursting with pride these days, because their favorite voice actress, Tavia Gilbert, has been named Best Female Narrator at this year’s Audie Awards, the highest honor in the audiobook industry!

The 22nd annual Audies Gala was held at New York City on June 1st. Awards were given in 27 categories including Audiobook of the Year. Gilbert, who brought Grain Valley to life in Maggie Vaults Over the Moon by Grant Overstake, is among the greatest performers in the world of audiobooks, as selected by the Audio Publishers Association.

She won the Audie for her performance of the novel, Be Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson. Other nominees in the category were Robin Miles, Juliet Stevenson, Bahni Turpin, and Emma Thompson.

“Tavia Gilbert is every author’s dream performer,” said Overstake, who added, “She makes Maggie and Grain Valley’s cast of characters come to life. She puts her heart and soul into everything she does, and everybody in the business knows it, and everyone who listens to her can feel it, too.”

Gilbert’s “Be Frank With Me” earned a Best Female Narrator Audie Award.

Tavia received a slew of positive reviews for the audiobook version of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, released in 2015 by Blackstone Audio, the nation’s largest independent audiobook distributor. Gilbert and author Grant Overstake “make a great duo” according to reviewer Kira Moody, a librarian in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Three-time Audies Award judge Susan G. Baird anointed Gilbert’s performance with superlatives such as “beautiful,” “engaging,” and “splendid,” in AudioFile magazine, which included Maggie on its list of recommended new audiobooks. Read full review at AudioFile.

 

Gilbert’s reading of “Maggie” earned a rave review from AudioFile.

With advancements in smartphone technology, the audiobook industry is growing exponentially, as more and more people are downloading books to their phones and listening as they travel. For teen athlete Katie Wright and her mom, Jennifer, the 31-mile stretch of highway between Prospect, Kentucky and Katie’s pole-vault practices at Fuzion Athletics in Shelbyville went by waaay too soon as they listened to Tavia Gilbert perform Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.

Katie and Jennifer Wright enjoyed Maggie on audiobook.

“Since my daughter was very little one of my favorite parenting memories was reading to her. We still love to share books together but sometimes struggle to find the time,” mom said. “We discovered on the long drive to practice how great it is to listen to an audiobook together.

“Gilbert’s narration really drew us into the story and characters!” Jennifer adds in her review. “Often times coming home we would stay in the car a few more minutes just to continue listening to the story. While we loved the happy ending, we were sad that the story ended and we no longer shared part of our day with Maggie together.”

Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is the magical story of Maggie Steele, a gritty farm girl who rebounds after tragedy, reaching high achevement as a pole-vaulter. Kirkus Reviews calls it, “A fine young adult novel about perseverance in sports and in life.”

The audiobook can be downloaded from Audible and is available in audio, paperback and ebook at Amazon, Indiebound and many other sites.

 


Leave a comment

Sign Up Today for the La Crosse River Barge Vault!

Click Here to Register!

Star-spangled champions earned first place trophies and copies of ‘Maggie Vaults Over the Moon’ at last year’s River Vault held on a ginormous barge on the Mississippi River in La Crosse, Wis.

LA CROSSE, Wis. — Pole-vaulters will compete on a giant river barge in front of thousands of cheering spectators here at the 7th Annual River Vault, to be held July 3rd and 4th on the waters of the Mississippi River.

Last year, soaring pole-vaulters captivated the crowd at the River Vault. (Photos by Daniel Schraith.)

Pole-vaulters captivated the crowd at the 2015 River Vault.

Event organizer Jeremiah Burish says, “Don’t miss your chance to get LARGE on a BARGE!”

SIGN UP TODAY! (Click Here)

“The River Vault is a big stage with great competition,” said Burish, Director of Sports Sales at the La Crosse Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The great crowd, fast runway, and electric atmosphere combine to make a recipe conducive for lifetime personal bests.”

Cheering the competitors will be Maggie Steele, storybook heroine of the magical novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon. Continue reading


1 Comment

Coach of the Year Recommends High-Flying ‘Maggie’

WheatleyBitesMedalWithCover

As track and field athletes prepare for regional and state championships, a national high school track coach of the year recommends the young adult novel, Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, to help inspire them on their personal quest for greatness.

National Coach of the Year Dennis Bolt recommends 'Maggie'

Coach Bolt recommends ‘Maggie’

Dennis Bolt has coached at Hillsboro (KS) High School for 25 years. And during that time, hundreds of his athletes have qualified for the state track meet, including 36 state champions! Bolt’s boys’ teams have won three class 3A team titles, and his girls’ teams have won two team titles.

In recognition, Bolt was honored as the National Federation Boys Coach of the Year in 2004.

Endorsement review from Coach Dennis Bolt:

“Whether a coach or athlete, you know that sport exemplifies the trials of life.

“Only through hard work and dedication can you receive an opportunity to achieve greatness when the opportunity arises. Maggie Vaults Over the Moon by Grant Overstake exemplifies how a young person finds strength and inspiration after experiencing a great personal loss. Continue reading