Derek Lundy – no relation to the local photographer of the same name – was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. His life was occupied by a wide variety of jobs: he was a long-distance truck driver, a factory worker, a museum guard, an executive editor at Butterworths Legal Publishers, and many, many other things.
He became a writer quite by accident. Lundy began writing legal journalism to publicize the fact that he was available as a short-term freelance contract lawyer. Much to his surprise, he found that he liked writing much more than his legal work. Over the course of the next few years, he wrote for various lawyers’ and other professional publications. After being commissioned to write a short biography, Lundy transitioned to writing non-fiction books full time.
Outside of the law firm, Lundy has led a life enriched with adventure. He has sailed in small boats almost all his life, including a passage around Cape Horn and transatlantic voyage in a square-rigger. It was this life on the high seas coupled with his writing that brought Lundy to Salt Spring. In 1998, a tour for his book Godforsaken Sea brought him to Victoria. With a couple of days to spare before he headed north, he decided to visit Salt Spring Island because the ferry schedule fit nicely with his impromptu tour schedule. On this trip, he remembered his connection to the island: His great great uncle Benjamin Lundy had settled there in the 1880s. The two men, though separated by generations, were both born in the same small worker’s house in Belfast. There was a wonderful accidental symmetry about it, and in 1999 Lundy, along with his wife and daughter, took a year-long sabbatical from their life in Toronto to live quietly on the island.
After the family returned to Toronto, they concluded that “only a maniac would live in Toronto if Salt Spring was an option”, so in 2002 they made the island their permanent home.
The bloody red hand: a journey through truth, myth, and terror in Northern Ireland
Borderlands: riding the edge of America (2010)
Godforsaken sea: the true story of a race through the world’s most dangerous waters
Scott Turow: meeting the enemy (1995)
The way of a ship: a square-rigger voyage in the last days of a sail (2002)
For more information, visit Lundy’s website.