November 28, 2007
With the FUBAR Rally having just wrapped up and with it the accompanying blog reports, it’s likely that the adventurer in your family (maybe that’s you) is left looking for new reads to fuel their passion for long range adventure cruising.
We’ve got the antidote for you: a new book that chronicles one man’s journey across the ocean. Four Across the Atlantic is written by Doug Seaver, a participant in the 2004 Nordhavn Atlantic Rally, whose desire to set sail in a bold manner as such was so great that he paid to join the rally without having a boat to travel on. Seaver had his eye on a Nordhavn and felt ownership was imminent but first, he wanted to make sure he was a part of P.A.E.’s caravan from Florida to Europe.
Four months before the rally’s commencement, Seaver purchased a Nordhavn 50, Four Across. But even prior to that, the wheels started turning about keeping a log of his days at sea. The actual first entry was on September 30, 2003 – nearly a year prior to departure and he stayed dedicated to it throughout, writing the day’s accounts down in a spiral notebook. “At that point,” Seaver said, “my goal was to have a record of our adventure to share with the crew as a remembrance of the voyage.” His journal writing was further bolstered by the efforts required by each boat crew to document life on board for P.A.E.’s in-house docudrama (Living The Dream) as well as Georgs Kolesnikovs’ cruising website trawlersandtrawlering.com.
It wasn’t until after the rally’s conclusion as he sat typing up the journal on his home computer that his wife suggested he shop it around as a manuscript to book publishers. Seaver thought she could be on to something. “One unique aspect of the book is that it is not a reflection on the voyage or a remembered account filtered through the perspective of time,” said Seaver. “It reflects exactly what was going on both activity wise and in my head at the time I wrote each entry.” Nautical Book Publishing was one of two companies interested and wound up striking a deal with Seaver to have it put into book form.
From there, two years were spent editing and selecting photos, securing permission to use the photos, writing picture captions, designing a cover, proof reading all of the various drafts, and getting other NAR participants to help. P.A.E.’s Jim Leishman wrote the Foreword and Seaver’s son, Will, offered up his humorous take on long range cruising (which can also be found in the back of Circumnavigator III) for the book’s Afterword. Photographer David Shuler also donated the use of his images.
“Needless to say,” said Seaver, “the publishing process itself was an adventure.”
Despite that, Seaver says he is happy with the way the book turned out and hopes others will enjoy reading it. Editorial reviews have described it as “fun to read and packed with plenty of adventure.” But Seaver hopes readers will find something more in it than just its entertainment value – especially since it has a broad appeal.
“For those who dream of long range cruising, I hope it inspires them to cast off. For those who aren’t sure, I hope the book stands as an ‘everyman adventure’, proving that it can be done. And, for all who participated in this adventure or who followed it from shore, I hope the story of one captain’s experience brings back fond memories.”
Four Across The Atlantic can be purchased through amazon.com.