With a successful Kickstarter campaign behind it, Craig Snyder's A Secret History of the Ollie will be released next month, and trust me, it's going to have a huge impact on the world of skateboarding. I'm glad for this not only because I had the opportunity (and the pleasure) to serve as the editor of this book, but because Craig has created a masterpiece of sports history. And if you don't trust me on this, you can listen to what some other folks have to say:
"Everyone thinks they know the skateboarding's history but what they really know is a series of half-facts compounded by hype and amnesia. This book will rewrite skateboarding history as we know it." — Betsy Gordon, Smithsonian
“Craig Snyder is a well of knowledge and I am very appreciative of his taking the time to take a look back at the history and bring it to life for those who have no clue, and for all of us who skated for little or no money—only the glory of camaraderie and raising the learning curve every time we went out.” — Edie Robertson, 1970s pro, first woman and American to perform a no-handed aerial on a skateboard on national television, and one of the original, founding members of the Sims skateboard team
Still, these quotes don't really do the book justice, because they don't speak at all to the hard work and heart Craig put into this book. For over seven years, he spent virtually all his time tracking down exclusive interviews and never-berfore-published images, and poring over skate mags, newsletters, and even posters to uncover the history of skating in the pre-Internet era and put it on paper.
What he did, in remarkable detail, is bring to life the history of a sport whose creation myth, up until now, has told only a tiny fraction of the real story, and has left hundreds of skaters and their contributions hidden away. Now, thanks, to Craig, they will get their due.
Congratulations, Craig! Here's hoping that A Secret History of the Ollie just knocks 'em dead. Cause it's the kind of book that happens only once in the history of a sport, and changes everything.