Archive for the ‘Sea stories’ Category

“A novelized yarn describing the adventures of an Irish/American teenager who ran away to sea in the mid-1950s.

The author David Paul Collins was, indeed, shanghaied from the American port of Mobile, Alabama. It is later revealed that he was sold aboard ship by a gang for $100.
He was lucky. He landed on a ship crewed by a great bunch of West Indian and Filipino sailors. They looked after him, protected him from the first mate and educated him in a way that no school ever could.

His few months aboard taught him invaluable lessons about the world, about people, about racism and, even, about the sea and ships. It prepared him well for his formal education and, later, for the real world.

A very good read from a very perceptive writer.”

Excerpted from a review published by Baird Publications Ltd, Hong Kong

Looking back at the IPPY awards from previous years, the growth of the independent publishing community is evident. For the 5th annual IPPY Awards in 2001, there were David Collins Bio photo770 publishers who participated in only 49 categories. This year, 2,400 independent authors and publishers entered the awards. With 72 national categories, 22 regional categories, and the chance to be an Outstanding Book of the Year, the IPPY awards continue to capture the diversity of the creative work of independent authors and publishers.

This year marked the first time that e-Books were acknowledged in the IPPY Awards with five diverse categories that recognized fiction, non-fiction, juvenile fiction, and children’s illustrated eBooks. Since the 2003 IPPYs, the number of winners using e-Books has been on the rise.

Author David Collins, who won the silver medal in Best Juvenile Fiction e-Book for Shanghaied, explained, “E-Books boost sales in ways that paper cannot. Writers want to be published by mainstream houses and readership numbers help a great deal. Winning in the e-Book category could not be better.” With the new categories recognizing eBooks, the IPPY Awards have been able to adapt so the awards reflect the ever-changing environment of the independent publishing community.

By Nicolette Amstutz, author of article “Seven iUniverse Authors Win 2012 IPPY Awards”

“Just the thoughts of a fifteen year old boy waking up on an African ship with no idea how he got there give me chills, but that is what happens to Jack Sligo in this story. And it is what happened to David Paul Collins in real life. Spellbound by his Irish grandfather’s tales of adventure, Jack Sligo had dreams of traveling around the world as part of the crew on a cruise ship. But did he dream of starting out this way? “Shanghaied” is a novel based on the author’s own true story as a merchant seaman, making this not just a fictional story, but a story told with realistic accounts of what actually happens in the life of a merchant seaman.

I was hooked from the beginning of this story because I wanted to see what happened to Jack Sligo. I can only imagine the shock this guy felt waking up on that ship of strangers! In this well-written story, David Collins takes you to the sea with him as he starts his sea journey at a very early age. I have never been at sea, but it felt almost as if I was there, smelling the sea, feeling the spray of salt water, and as a merchant, taking in everything on the entire ship from top to bottom. I always enjoy reading a book by an author writing from personal experiences, and this is truly one of my favorites. I enjoyed the writing style of Collins, and felt I could laugh and cry with him throughout his journey. I highly recommend this book as a fantastic read for anyone, and especially for those looking for a great adventure. This book will take your adventurous juices and take them to a level you never knew you had. After reading “Shanghaied”, you will want to take those adventures with a stronger determination.”  Reviewed by Joy H. for Readers Favorite


Original video on YouTube 

Call of the sea

Posted: December 11, 2011 in Reviews, Sea stories, Shanghaied

“Many years ago as a teen-ager I had the great opportunity  to learn to sail with a program called Sea Scouts. Reading Shanghaied by David Paul Collins brings back good – and sometimes not so good – memories of those days. Based on a true story the narrative kept me hooked from the first page to the last.  While I was never shanghaied, I can fully relate to Jack’s adventure on an African freighter in the 1950′s.  Shanghaied is a great read and I recommend it to anyone who loves the sea.”  Paul Cosby

Shanghaied book excerpt

Posted: November 8, 2011 in Sea stories, Shanghaied

Chapter Seven

“Speak English, kid?”

I jumped a little at the sound of the voice and turned toward the man on the next stool. He looked like one of those guys I used to see in the RKO Movietone News about Hitler. From the neck up like an officer: neat, red goatee, big red moustache, and a crew cut. From the neck down, a bum fighter: no shirt, khaki trousers, thick belt, black boots, and all muscle. The tattoo on his arm looked like a seasick mermaid swimming over the waves of his rippling muscles. His eyes darted like yellow bumble bees ready to sting. He scared me.

“Sure, I speak English. I’m Irish.” I looked around the bar but could find no easy way out. I was stuck.

He nodded. “I’m German, Bremerhaven, name’s Fritz. Give the kid a drink,” he ordered. He made no offer to shake my hand, nor I his. “On the beach, kid?”

“Kind of, Mr. Fritz. Look, I have to go, it’s dark out. Those are my pals just coming down the stairs.”

Fritz turned and said, “Guess your pals are leaving, you prob’ly have to go with them, kid. I’m leaving, too, back to my ship. See you later.”

I was glad to see the back of him. He gave me the creeps, but I gratefully tossed down the drink he bought. It tasted bitter.

Hans and Max paused at the foot of the stairs and said something to Fritz in German as he passed on the way to the door. I wondered how they knew each other.

“Okay, kid, ve goin’ back now.”

Continue reading Chapter 7 here:

“There were more than a hundred men edging in waves toward the front of the Maritime union hall. They all looked alike: square jaws, steely eyes, and sneering smiles. They were the toughest crowd God ever assembled in one massive room. From the little I knew of the world outside Boston, I understood that these men were the kind who would not live peacefully ashore. They belonged to the sea.”  Jack Sligo, Shanghaied