Paul's Blog

Why it took seventeen years to publish this book…

With no money, no job and no arm, Paul Templer faced a few obstacles in his transition from Zimbabwe to Beverly Hills, Michigan.

I don’t want to come across as being trite, but when my run in with that angry hippo was first reported back in 1996, it usually ended with something along the lines of “man who was attacked by hippo is maimed for life.” If I was going to take the time and invest the energy in writing a book then I wanted the story to have a different ending. A happy ending. I had a lot to do to make that happen. It’s taken me seventeen years to get to a place where I can honestly say… insofar as the hippo guy is concerned; the hippo story now has a happy ending.

During the last seventeen years, I’ve had a lot of life going on: navigating a life tainted by PTSD and learning to live with being an amputee, getting married to an American lass, leaving Africa and starting a new life and raising a family in the USA.

When Carrie and I first got married and the question of me finding a job kept rearing its ugly head, I quickly discovered that there wasn’t a huge demand for one-armed safari guides in the metro Detroit area. I also quickly discovered that if I wanted to stay married, I needed to find a job or at the very least, an income.

I had a lot to learn… still do. So far it’s taken me seventeen years to build our businesses whilst sustaining and managing the evolution of our Foundation and all the while I’ve been kinda busy raising a family with three children, one of whom has had more than her fair share of significant health issues to deal with. So with a lot going on… paying bills, being a husband and taking care of kids often trumped writing a book.

But we’re extremely blessed and as a family we got to a place where life was good, for the most part (health-wise) our family was stable, bills were getting paid, our businesses were flourishing and our Foundation was evolving. That’s when Carrie started pressing me to finish my book.

I think on the one hand, she knew it’d be cathartic for me. On the other she thought it’d serve as a useful catalyst, not only to feeding our bank account but also to raising both awareness and funding for the causes our Foundation supports, particularly when my publisher agreed to donate a portion of the proceeds from book sales to our Foundation.

So that’s the short version of why it took me seventeen years to write my book. There’s obviously a whole lot more to the story too. Extreme adventures, mystery and mayhem. If I’ve piqued your interest, “Go on… read the book.”

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