OCTOBER 18, 2004

Author's appeal: Stories of canoeing misadventures


Doug McKown

Box 57

Banff, Alberta


T1L 1A2




Tuesday, 12 October 2004




In February of 2004, I had a book published titled, "Up the Creek, True Stories of Canoeists in Trouble", by Mcgraw-Hill. This book is a collection of stories which demonstrate the sort of things that can go wrong when paddlers go canoeing. The goal of the book was to promote safe canoeing through examples and lessons learned from the personal experiences of knowledgeable paddlers. The book has been well received, and the responses I have had, indicate that people can be entertained as well as learn and benefit, from reading about the troubles and problems that other canoeists have experienced.

So, no surprise, I would like to do a second similar book!

I would like to know if you, as an experienced paddler, have a story about any kind of incident where something went wrong while you were paddling. The only limitations I make, is that there must be an open canoe involved. That is about the only constraint. I would like to have stories about pretty much anything that has gone wrong during a canoe trip. Day trips, expeditions, lakes, rivers, doesn't matter. I'd like to hear about problems that arose from; insufficient planning, lack of experience, insufficient skills, excess confidence, weather surprises, equipment failure, lack of communication, complacency, random acts of nature, or judgment mishaps, just to name a few. The stories do not have to involve a major disaster (although major disasters are good!). Stories can involve minor incidents, or close calls, really any event where a lesson was learned.

I am looking for a collection of stories that will entertain and inform, not preach and blame. While I want to ensure that people get the point of the stories, I do not plan to over analyze and try to determine fault.

I would like stories of anywhere from 500-2000 words, and would welcome photos to go along with the stories. Individuals will have complete approval over any editorial changes I may make, as well as approval of the final version to be used. People can also choose to remain anonymous, or change the names to protect the embarrassed.

I would be delighted if you would like to send me a story or ten. I am going to keep the stories independent of time. If there is good entertainment content, and a valuable lesson, then when the incident actually happened is less important.

I would also greatly appreciate it if you can put me in contact with other experienced paddlers, that might have an experience or two to share. If you want any more information, please let me know.


I look forward to hearing from you,


Doug McKown



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