Happy New Year everyone!
If you read my blog, then I imagine you also follow my social media sites, so simply posting pictures to summarize my year would be redundant. Besides, I’m a writer. Not a photo blogger. (Ha ha… Okay, so I guess I am guilty of doing both). 🙂 Hey, who doesn’t enjoy photos with their stories?
Well, the bottom line is, 2013 was exceptional. I caught some fish, tried to catch some more and even tried new endeavors that I never thought I would– like shooting a 30.06 rifle and following Andrew on a “cougar” hunt (during separate occasions of course.). Personally, that is not my type of hunting, but it gets you outside and plenty of exercise. I see arguments to both sides of “predator hunting”, but since this is my fishing blog, we will just leave it at that. 🙂
Back in March, I left my “nine-to-five” job that was leading me to a dead end and decided to take on writing full time– which ended up being more like part-time, as needing to pay bills had to take priority in the captain’s seat while simultaneously trying to follow my heart without starving. (“Following your heart will fill your pocket book”- Said no one, ever.) But, that doesn’t mean I can’t hope that it will eventually. After all, I consider myself an optimistic person. I do not consider myself a great “blogger” as it turns out. I have a hard time writing on a daily basis. It takes me more than a few hours to put together cohesive pieces that have meaning and are fresh or unique. I try to write notes while I am out fishing that I will be able to put into a post later on, but it ends up being a lost thought struggling to make sense when connected with sentences. So, with that said, I appreciate anyone who is still reading this right now, because it shows that I owe some solid writing to those viewers who follow my blog and are willing to read what I have to say. As a resolution for this new year, I will try my hardest to keep up with my blog on a more regular basis, but I can’t make any promises. I can promise that I will try to get out on the water as much as possible, which should bring plenty of writing inspiration.
As I said in my previous post, connections are important in freelance writing. Meeting photographers, other fly-fishers, fellow writers, etc. allow me to discover new material by talking to those who have similar interests, as you end up learning new things and discovering new ones through shared ideas.
Over the past few years, I’ve had the pleasure of becoming good friends with April Vokey. She is a major part of my inspiration to get into fly-fishing in the first place. She is a fantastic writer and -of course- a very highly renowned and notable fly-fisher in the industry. The best thing about knowing April, is how much I have learned from her just as a girl friend. We are able to laugh and joke about things– related to fishing or not– and she has a ton of experience in an area I have just barely dipped my toes into. When we get to spend time together, though, we don’t always talk about fishing– In fact, we rarely talk about fishing. So, when we had the chance to actually fish together for the first time a couple months ago, I was taken aback when I watched her cast and actually saw how she fished in the flesh. She truly is one of the most elegant yet assertive fishers I have ever seen. She makes casting look easy. Yet, she is a total goofball and is just as vulnerable on slippery rocks when wading tough runs as anyone else. She is the real deal. And she just so happens to be a class act and admirable person. I am lucky to know her and truly value our friendship.
Adrienne Comeau and Paula Shearer are two other well-known female fly-fishers whom I have had the opportunity to get to know– both on and off the water, and they too are extraordinary casters and fishers to watch, but more importantly than that, they are fun, free-spirited women who are a blast to hang out with.
|Adrienne Comeau, Catherine Laflamme, Lisa Schweitzer, Colby, April Vokey and Paula Shearer.
(Photo courtesy of Adrienne Comeau)
This past year was highlighted with activities that deepened these important friendships. From going to “Cast and Blast” in Squamish, B.C. in April with Paula and Adrienne and had the chance to meet a bunch of other awesome people there; to getting to fish on the Thompson river for the first time with April and Paula, were just a couple of those highlights. Both of those trips are ones I will never forget. I can only hope to continue to be able to do them again and again, over and over…
One of the biggest accomplishments for me last year, was becoming an Event Coordinator for the Wild Steelhead Coalition. It has allowed me to learn more about the beautiful wild fish I fell in love with as soon as I got into fly-fishing, and taught me how we- as capable people- can help save their depleting populations in the future. It also has allowed me to connect with other people in the industry who are important to this cause and have extensive knowledge that I can learn a lot from just by listening to them. If you ever think you can stop learning, you might as well quit, because there is ALWAYS more to learn– Especially when it comes to wild steelhead and the areas they rely on in order to thrive and continue to come back to their spawning grounds for -hopefully- many years to come…
Please join me and the WSC in our continued efforts to do everything possible to save our wild steelhead and the environment they need for their habitat:
More to come as this new year abounds…
Thank you for reading,