Award-winning Scorpio writer Felicia Schneiderhan has just launched a new book, Newlyweds Afloat. Published by Breakaway Books, this memoir traces her experiences as a Chicago bride who gives away her possessions and moves onboard her husband’s boat in downtown Chicago. For two years they face sub-zero winters, the stormy seas of Lake Michigan, wild urban animals, and sewage situations—all while learning to live as husband and wife in the hold of a jealous first love—named Mazurka.
Scorpio Traits Shine Through
Schneiderhan’s Scorpio nature shines throughout the book, both in its content and its writing style. For example, she subtitled her book Married Bliss and Mechanical Breakdowns While Living Aboard a Trawler, which gives a good indication of Scorpio’s love of extremes in its combination of bliss with breakdowns.
With the Scorpion’s fearless pursuit of all that’s deep and dark, she never shies away from probing into Mazurka’s murkier side: mechanicals deep below deck that mysteriously stop working, a Canadian goose that fiercely protects its nesting mate by attacking Schneiderhan each time she passes by, and sewage that has to be pumped out regularly (and that backs up into the boat when the holding tank gets full). She also turns her journalist’s relentless, questioning approach inward to show us her personal dark side and the struggles she overcomes to grow into a new way of relating to the boat-loving boyfriend who eventually becomes her husband. In the process, she learns about true intimacy and reconnects to her spirituality and love of nature.
Astrology And Friendship
She’s now on a midwest tour to publicize the book, and last night found me and my husband attending a launch party held at the Chicago Corinthian Yacht Club on the city’s North Side. Felicia is an old friend, and we had a wonderful time reconnecting (she moved to Duluth, Minnesota, several years ago). When she lived in Chicago, we spent time together as creatives, writing and painting.
At the party, she read several excerpts from Newlyweds Afloat, interspersed with entertaining stories and asides about life with her husband and on the water. Later, it was a delight to learn that she mentions me in her acknowledgments as well as in the book itself, including references to astrology. These sections can be found in the chapters “Tell Me A Story” and “Surviving Shackleton’s Endurance.”
It’s my great pleasure to recommend Newlyweds Afloat, which is funny yet poignant, touching yet tough, and dreamlike yet practical.
As the publisher noted, it is “part travelogue, part how-to, part love story, hashed out in a floating home of about 400 square feet. It’s the travelogue of boating Chicago and the Great Lakes. It’s the how-to guide for any wannabe liveaboard, with directions on how to fix an engine while tied to a mooring can, and survival lessons for what to do when the river freezes, ice locks the hull, and cabin temperature drops to 20 degrees. And it’s the love story of two unlikely partners—a city girl and a ‘Yooper’—who learn what romance and partnership really mean while living the transient lifestyle.”
Thank you, Felicia, for sharing your Scorpionic life and artistry with us all.
Available Through Amazon, Google Books
Wishing you harmony and happy reading,