100 Miles to Destiny
                 a Novel on Running
 
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SERRA H. S. TEACHER PENS ENDURANCE RUNNING NOVEL

   There's a lot to think on a 100 mile endurance run. The challenge is trying to think about things other than pain, fatigue and your competition. For Willis McCarthy, the miles he logged during his years of training for and completing 100 mile endurance runs, was spent keeping mental notes that would eventually spin into a novel. He set about completing the novel much in the same way he set about completing a life time of distance races - with determination, perseverence, skill, sweat, and a whole lot of faith in his abilities. The work of fiction, "100 Miles to Destiny, a Novel on Running," has been enthusiatically reviewed by runners and non-runners alike.
Excerpts from the Redwood City Daily News, Town Talk, Joan Dentler (27 February 2008)


   Congrats to new novelist, Willis McCarthy, science teacher and cross country coach at Junipero Serra High School  and author of "100 Miles to Destiny: a Novel on Running," an activity he knows more than something about. Will said he's run about "30,000 miles" in his life. "That's a ballpark estimate since I never kept accurate records of my daily mileage, the Humboldt State grad said. "I have run numerous marathons and ultramarathons. The most challenging and rewarding have been the 14 - 100 mile endurance runs I finished. I ran my first marathon in 1977 (Avenue of the Giants) and my last 100 mile endurance run in 1999 (Leadville)." The book took six years to write but half-a-lifetime to compile. The author has been making mental notes for the project for (nearly) 25 years. Compliments on Will's website say it's a "great story" with "compelling and diverse characters."
Excerpts from the Catholic San Francisco Newspaper, On the STREET Where You Live, Tom Burke (14 March 2008)


   I thought 100 Miles to Destiny was very well written. I especially liked how you blended together the different cultures and religions of the participant's in the race. I personally have never run an ultra, but I ran my thirteenth marathon about two weeks ago, The Cowtown in Fort Worth, and I could sum what I can relate to the hardships the runner's must endure, especially to their feet. The fact that you have completed a 100 mile run helped in the realism of what the participant's would have to feel and endure. It was also thought provoking how you attempted to have enemies, because of their particular nationalities, overcome their differences through athletic competition. It's unfortunate that we as a people are unable to do that. I would be very interested in reading anything else that you may have written. Once again, I thought your novel was very well done.
Sincerely, Tom; Arlington, Texas

 

   Finished the book this morning. It’s one of those compelling stories where I couldn’t put it down. The characters were well written, and the trials and adversity a runner goes through when they’re not at their best was also well done. Many times I stopped reading and contemplated races I have run and (compared) how things went according to how they did for some of the runners in the book. It was also good to see that running broke down barriers, being race, language and (or) religion. Thanks again for an outstanding book. It’s one I will recommend to my fellow running enthusiasts.

Dorn; McHenry, Illinois

 

   I recently finished your novel, 100 Miles to Destiny, and I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed it.  I love reading about running, and while I prefer non-fiction running books (i.e., first-person accounts of ultra races), I thought your novel was excellent. I felt involved the whole time and thought the details were wonderful. I typically try to read a book like this before a big race. I find that it psyches me up for the event.  I signed up for the Umstead 100 next weekend, so completing your book was perfect timing.  Umstead is certainly differently than Western States, but the idea of running 100 miles is the same.  I prefer races like WS and hopefully one day I can get accepted and run this great race. Congrats on completing your dream of writing a novel - I think you did a wonderful job!
Joe; Branchburg, NJ


   I had to write you a note to say how much I enjoyed your book. The characters and descriptions of their personal lives, cultures, the heart-pounding race itself . . . there's too much to mention!  It was interesting, funny, sad, thrilling and heart-warming, all wrapped up in one book. What an amazing accomplishment! Thank you for taking me on such an amazing ride. 
Catherine; Hillsborough, CA
 

I loved your book. It was a wonderful read. The race was my favorite character, the course itself. Everyone had to react to it and therefore adapt to its personality.
Manny; Lafayette, CA


"100 Miles to Destiny," what a fantastic read! I thoroughly enjoyed your book. Many times I thought about where I was and what I was doing during the summer of 1984 (Washington, D. C., congressional intern). Your knowledge of history during that time was excellent and enriched my reading experience. I also enjoyed the development of the many characters and their varied life experiences. I suspect you have spent a significant amount of time in the Sierras. 
Sincerely, Shaen; Loomis, CA


I recently read your novel 100 Miles to Destiny. I originally bought the book for my fiance, an aspiring ultramarathoner. We both found the story to be quite riveting and an honest portrayal of the internal and external struggles of endurance running. Although I have run several marathons, I have yet to run an ultramarathon. Your novel has inspired me to register for my first 50k. Although the idea of running longer than 26.2 seems preposterous to me, I remember that there was a time when running 13 miles seemed ridiculous. I guess that's the beauty of running--you can continually challenge yourself beyond what you thought was possible. My fiance is registered for his first 50 miler and is beyond ecstatic. Your novel has indeed inspired us to challenge our own limits. 
Thank you, Carmen; Memphis, TN
 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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