M.W. Gordon, Author of the Macduff Brooks Fly Fishing Mystery Novels
Thanks for visiting this site. Websites and other contemporary means of communication are a bit intimidating for one who began fishing while the war was raging in Europe. I welcome suggestions from this website's readers as to how it would be more comprehensible and informative.
I didn’t begin writing a novel until about six years ago. But I had written extensively on international and foreign law for forty years. I started out with a provincial education in Connecticut, receiving a B.S. from UConn and an M.A (Economics) from Trinity, all within thirty miles of my boyhood home in West Hartford. OCS and three years on destroyers broadened my vision and led me to obtain three law degrees, one in the U.S. (UConn), one in France (Strasbourg), and one in Mexico (Mexico City). My world became the world. I taught at several law schools in the U.S., and more abroad, including Amsterdam, Costa Rica, London, Frankfurt, Guatemala, Mexico, Paris, Florence, Lisbon, and Barcelona. It was a dream life and I enjoyed every minute. I never once walked into the law school, during forty years of teaching, when I wasn't excited about the day ahead.
When I stepped down from teaching law I decided to shift focus to something about fly fishing. I began building a wooden drift boat, the Osprey in my novels, went through a superb guide school at World Cast Anglers (Orvis) in Jackson Hole, and was even offered a full-time job guiding with a leading outfitter. But I thought that was a little strenuous career to begin at 74! So I decided to use Osprey to take out friends and work for such organizations as Project Healing Waters. I have towed Osprey from St. Augustine to Montana twice over the past four years.
Occasional work for the State Department over the years in such unstable areas as Yugoslavia, Cuba, the Sudan, Panama, Paraguay, Guatemala and others, gave me an understanding of our intelligence operations abroad. Thus, the idea for a novel about a fly fishing guide who was once an international law professor, but after some clandestine work in Guatemala was placed in a protection program with a new name - Macduff Brooks - and new locations - Montana and St. Augustine. I wanted Macduff to be a good guy - not the kind of guide character who is too often the center of a novel and is fleeing from years “back east” of involvement in excessive abuse of drugs and alcohol, and mistreatment of other persons. Montana and Wyoming are more than rehab centers.
I hope my novels reflect my feelings about fly fishing - practicing catch and release, using barbless hooks, helping to preserve critical fishing habitat, and sharing the belief that fly fishing takes one to some of the most spectacular parts of the country. Fly fishing is, after all, much about simply “being there.”
Last revised: August 2016
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in Jemez, New Mexico.