13 Aug Women You Should Know; Linda Greenlaw- Sword Fisherman, Perfect Storm Survivor
Women You Should Know
Meet Linda Greenlaw. She’s the only female sword-fishing captain in the U.S., an author of eight books and is called one of the best captains on the entire East Coast.
You first met Linda way back in 2000 when the film based on the book, The Perfect Storm, was made.
She was in that storm- the real one in 1991 – that’s right, the biggie Nor’easter that rocked the Atlantic Seacoast of New England to the point that they had to make a movie out of it. Sebastian Junger wrote that book. Linda wrote the rest.
Linda stands 5′ 2″ – She’s a little thing with a big boat. So ya see? Size doesn’t matter. She runs her own sword-fishing boat out of Maine and lives to write about. Or, actually, she writes SO she can live it.
‘It’s weird. When I introduce myself to a stranger, I always introduce myself as a fisherman. My heart says I’m a fisherman, but my checkbook says I’m a writer. I think of sword-fishing captains as a very elite group.’ as she says in her recent must read interview in Maine Magazine which can be seen here in it’s entirety.
Her talent as a writer has shot her to the top of the New York Times Bestseller list on which she has had three books. Her latest book, Seaworthy, tells of her return to blue water sword-fishing after ten years close to shore. Her next and ninth book in the works is about her life at her home on Isle Au Haut, Maine ( population- 90) and raising Sarai, a little girl who began working on her boat at age 14 and to whom Linda is legal guardian.
Land & Family:
Besides being a mom, an author and fisherman, Linda is involved in Coastal Studies for Girls in Freeport, Maine. CSG is the country’s only residential science and leadership semester school for 10th grade girls.
Unbeknown to The DB, her sister’s business is Sea Bags, on which we highlighted her sail cloth bags a few weeks ago. They even created a swordfish bag that they are selling in combination with her book.
Capt. Linda Greenlaw assembles her fishing dream team of old timers. A long time veteran of the sword fishing industry, Linda survived the perfect storm in the sister ship to the Andrea Gail, the Hannah Boden. No matter the weather, Linda is cool, calm and collected. The crew has to use all their experience to outdo the Eagle Eye II and its machine crew on the unpredictable and dangerous Grand Banks.
The Sea Hawk is a 70-foot steel hulled boat built in the 1970′s. It’s a house forward design with the wheelhouse raised up above the cabin and the galley area and crew quarters beneath. The Sea Hawk is a veteran of the Grand Banks fishery, but it can be an adventure handling the seasonal storms in this boat.
Returning back to blue water sword fishing is not an easy undertaking. She’s older, has family responsibilities now and is captaining a rusty and ancient ship riddled with technical challenges. The worst part happens when her ship inadvertently drifts into Canadian waters and she is charged with illegally fishing in Canadian waters. She was thrown into jail in Newfoundland and the ordeal that ensued became an adventure on land almost as turbulent as the ones at sea.
Click here for her Lobster Casserole recipe from the book
Recipes From A Very Small Island
For more on Linda Greenlaw, visit her website