"There's dangerous eels in there" is just one of the fictional reasons for the fish not biting in a book by a Pleasant Point fishing guide.
Why Trout Usually Win: The Guides' Book of Fishing Excuses, written by Graeme Marshall and designed by his son Alistair, was conceived after the author ran out of excuses.
He guided an American client called Lisa on a challenging day once, and that was the catalyst for his latest literary offering.
"We were really struggling and I was coming up with a number of different possibilities to help explain why the dour browns were not on song, when she turned and commented, ‘Ya know something Graeme. You should write the guides' book of fishing excuses'."
So he has. It is the 12th book he has written himself. He has also collaborated with fellow trout fisherman and photographer Les Hill on five other serious books on fishing and hunting.
Next year he and his Kimbell friend Don MacDonald are revising the contents and name of an earlier title, Young Hunter: A Beginner's Guide to Hunting in New Zealand, with the hope it will appeal more broadly to include adults.
Though Marshall's latest offering is tongue-in-cheek, it also has an informative side. His career as a schoolteacher was interrupted in the early 1980s when he decided to take a year out and explore fishing guiding. To pay his bills he took up possum hunting and wrote his first semi-instructional book about it.
"It did quite well and I was surprised," he said.
His outdoor life progressed to guided walks, then trout fishing guiding in Nelson's Kahurangi National Park. Now semi-retired, he writes and does relief teaching.
Why Trout Usually Win: The Guides' Book of Fishing Excuses will be launched tomorrow at Timaru District Library at 7pm. Marshall will be there to sign copies of his book.
- © Fairfax NZ News