Buell Hollister by Peter Vanderwarker Planting a garden of experiences that I am now harvesting with fiction.

Life is what happens around the next corner and I’ve turned a few. I once even drove a Checker cab in Boston for a little while. I was between jobs and needed the money, but found that it was surprisingly fun and I was almost sad when I found more respectable employment. Most of my fares were interesting to talk to and the silent ones were OK too. The game of finding my way around the streets in those pre-GPS days was challenging,  the mental process was like playing Chinese checkers and involved knowing all the twisted, one-way streets between wherever I was and the fare, rather – I see now — like writing a novel.

Today this kind of job is a gateway for new immigrants and I wish them well. Then, it was a lifelong career for some people whose backsides were eased by those little wooden ball mats, kind of like those of swamis on beds of comfortable nails. Later, after a stint doing admin work for a large Boston area university, I ran a one-man public relations business for several years, helping people in the fish business sell their products. This makes me one of the few people on the outside who knows how this arcane business works, from harvest to consumption. I went back to school to study marine biology and spent the next 15 years working for the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, spending spent many weeks and months on commercial fishing boats and research vessels, big and small. I’m now turning yet another corner – can’t wait to see what’s next.


artichokeBuell Hollister Bio:

University of Virginia graduate – BA in English, with subsequent training in biology.

Newspaper journalist, contributing writer for several boating and general interest periodicals, free-lance editor, short story writer, sometimes poet. Former Boston Correspondent for the National Fisherman. Fifteen years with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, first in their underutilized species promotion program, then helping to develop commercial fishing gear that reduced bycatch (juvenile fish and untargeted species). Created the Massachusetts Clean Vessel Act program to improve coastal water quality. My plan was used by other states and is now the national standard. Past President of the St. Botolph Club in Boston, a club centered around the arts.