PHOENIX, Arizona, May 11. WE at Swimming World are excited to announce that our own Jeff Commings, who fills a need in virtually every department within the company, has published an autobiography of his life as a gay African-American swimmer entitled Odd Man Out.
The book is now available in the Swim Shop for everyone that purchase this groundbreaking novel that tells Jeff's tale like no one else in the world can. Copies of the book purchased from our Swim Shop will also be signed by the author!
Here's some more information from Jeff's press release about the publication:
Books written by gay athletes in diving, baseball, football, basketball and ice skating have captivated audiences with their candid and unflinching stories. Now comes ODD MAN OUT: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY, the first book to tell the true story of a gay African-American swimmer. Jeff Commings was the first African-American to win a gold medal in swimming at the Olympic Festival and was the first African-American swimmer to compete at the Pan-American Games, but he went through his swimming career feeling like he was just like everyone else – except when it came to his sexuality. Commings spent all of his teenage years and most of his 20s afraid to live openly as a gay man. Though he was a member of several USA Swimming national teams and competed in two Olympic Trials, his fear of rejection from those he loved and respected severely affected his life socially and athletically.
In ODD MAN OUT: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY, Commings reveals intimate details of his life, many of which have never been made public. But this book is much more than the story of a man's journey to discover his place in a world he feared would shun him. It's also the story of a black swimmer who rose to elite status when he saw very few on pool decks with his skin color.
Growing up in St. Louis, Mo., Commings found a connection to the water as young as three years old. He never strayed from the sport, which rewarded him with travel to places he never dreamed he'd see, a free college education and friendships that will last a lifetime. Commings takes us on a rollercoaster ride in ODD MAN OUT: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY through more than 30 years of triumph, sorrow and love. Equally heartbreaking and funny, this book is an uncompromising portrait of one man's quest to fit in on his own terms. It tests readers of all walks of life to look inwardly and reflect on their own fears and insecurities.
Swimming World wishes Jeff nothing but success with his autobiography!