Excellent profile of the P J Lynch in the Irish Times:
Lynch was never interested in writing. Publishers were happy to send on “texts presented as fait accompli”. It came as a surprise to him, then, that he should find himself embarking on an original book project that would take him eight years to complete at a time when he had never been busier with commissions.
The seeds of the book that would become The Boy Who Fell Off the Mayflower, or John Howland’s Good Fortune were sown when Lynch was invited to illustrate a story about colonial pilgrims in America. “I was very interested in the subject matter, but the version, in rhyming couplets, was too sweet. I thought relations between Indians and the colonisers couldn’t possibly be that good, and I turned it down.”
He was interested enough in the subject matter, however, to do his own research, and when he read about John Howland, a servant who fell off the Mayflower and survived, “I became obsessed with finding out more about him”.