My name is Chris Solomon, and I need your very best guide story.
Let me explain:
I’m a contributing editor at Outside magazine, based up in Seattle, and I’m also a frequent writer for the New York Times, Scientific American, Runner’s World and other rags.
Outside has asked me to tackle a large story for spring tentatively entitled, ‘The tales guides tell.’ I’ve had the good fortune to spend some time with guides over the years—both while on assignment and because I have guides who are friends. I know that they have really interesting stories to tell. Simply put, we want to capture the very best of the tales that guides tell each other over beers back at the bar, once their clients have all gone home.
To that end, I’m looking for the hilarious stories. The absurd stories. The X-rated stories. The truly surreal and/or bizarre stories. The heartbreaking tales and maybe even sometimes the tragic stories. I’m not looking for a sort-of entertaining story, I’m looking for the absolute one tale you’ve got that sticks with you above all the others.
I don’t need to tell you that guides—whether fishing- , canoe- , rafting-, mountain-, ski- guides—are the essence of outdoor culture. You are out there more than any of us, dealing not only with Mother Nature, but you’re also out there dealing with true wildlife—which is to say, other human beings.
We want to collect perhaps a dozen or more of the best stories into a large package for a spring issue; they’ll range from small (a few sentences) to large (perhaps 1,500 words), and told in guides’ own words as much as possible… so you’d have a chance to go over the story with me and make sure it sounds right to you.
This idea will only work if I find truly top-shelf anecdotes, though. So I need the VERY BEST that are out there.
And to be clear: My goal is not to embarrass others. I can grant anonymity to clients. I don’t necessarily need to mention employers. I don’t always need to mention who you are—though I do hope to have many of these stories attributed, lest readers think I invented them. In short, if you’ve got an amazing story but your worry is being identified, let’s talk. We can figure something out.
I DON’T need you to write out the whole story! Just give me a sense of what the story is, and why it is so great or compelling. And we could then talk about it over the phone and I can do all the typing/transcribing of your story! Less work for you!
OR, do you know a guide who’s got the best story you’ve ever heard? Tell me who he/she is, and tell me how to reach him. Or put the guide in touch with me: solochris
Thanks so much. Please reply to me in the next few days with maybe just a line or two about your story—and when I could call you to talk about it and jot it down in more detail.
Thanks so much. I really appreciate your help in making this a collection that will even surprise guides with how entertaining and interesting it is.
Thanks so much for your help.