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Author seeks stories for next book "Breakers Across the Bow"

Posted: Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:03 pm
by WoodenBoats&IronMen
My name is Trygvie Jensen author of "Wooden Boats and Iron Men" and "Through Waves and Gales Comes Fishermen's Tales. I am currently looking to harvest a few more stories and photos for my next book. If anyone has a unique story involving commercial fishermen caught in big blows, strange occurrences or harrowing experiences please let me know. I would love to have a round table story-telling session, which I have done at Washington Island, Algoma and Door county. I may be reached at or If you know of anyone who is a good story teller, let me know. I am nearly finished with the manuscript, but I am in need a few good fishermen with a few tall tales to tell.

Re: Author seeks stories for next book "Breakers Across the Bow"

Posted: Tue May 02, 2017 5:20 am
by admin
That sounds very interesting. Feel free to use anything on the site that you might like to use. We are planning a visit to an old friend's (Philly Anderson's) shortly and expect to interview him. He has many tales of his life on the lake and said he's willing to share them with us.

His knowledge on so many aspects of the industry are encyclopedic that I've prepared a list of questions. If you think of anything you'd like us to ask him I will be happy to get answers from him. Perhaps you'll find something noteworthy in the interview that would work for your book.

I'm looking forward to reading it and if there's anything I can do to help please feel free to ask. We, like youself are working toward leaving a vivid account of what Great Lakes commercial fishing is like before we inevitably go the way of the blacksmith

I have a number of memories dating back to the mid 1970s but I'm always self conscious of my writing/punctuation skills. I sat in grade school drawing pictures of fish tugs instead of paying attention to all that exciting stuff.

Thank You

Re: Author seeks stories for next book "Breakers Across the Bow"

Posted: Tue May 02, 2017 6:23 pm
by WoodenBoats&IronMen
I thank you for the reply. I really found a treasure trove here at this site. A valuable asset to the vestiges of this industry that's falling deeper into lethargy. I grew up on Washington Island where the commercial fishing industry sustained nearly half of the islanders at one time. Both my great grandparents were commercial fishermen as well as many relatives (Jake Ellefson). I'm hoping to keep the oral histories alive and well through my books which are larger volumes that hold the way of life to which so many people really don't know or understand. I was always hoping to do a documentary regarding this livelihood, but in the meantime, I will keep interviewing and writing. If you don't mind keeping me in the loop on your interviews, I would appreciate it. Maybe we could organize a round table or storytelling session with several remaining commercial fishermen, I sure do need to harvest more stories, before they are gone.


Tryg Jensen

Re: Author seeks stories for next book "Breakers Across the Bow"

Posted: Tue May 02, 2017 7:52 pm
by WoodenBoats&IronMen
Here is a questionnaire I use for my interviews. If anyone would like to reply with a story to share.

Commercial Fishing Questionnaire

Here are a few questions I would like to ask you. The stories are very important to me, and need to be told to share with the younger generation. I will be writing another book called Breakers Across the Bow and the stories will be a big part of the book.

1) What led you down this path; did you ever consider anything else?

2) What is the greatest satisfaction you find in this job?

3) What is the biggest misconception of a commercial fisherman?

4) If you could change anything to improve the fishery, what would it be?

5) What is it going to take to be a fisherman in the 21st century, moreover how do you see the future of commercial fishing?

6) What is a typical day’s routine?

7) What is the fondest memory of your career?

8) What’s the strangest thing you've encountered?

9) What’s the most dangerous situation you've ever been in?

10) What were some of the fish tugs or boats you've had and what was or is your most favorite boat and why?

11) What’s the one thing or bit of advice that was handed down to you from either your father or another fishermen that is most valued to you?

12) What’s the worst storm you've ever been in?

Re: Author seeks stories for next book "Breakers Across the Bow"

Posted: Thu May 04, 2017 1:43 pm
by admin
I sent you an email. I thought I should tell you in case your email puts it in the spam folder or something like that.