Randy Wayne White (born 1950) is an American writer of crime fiction and non-fiction adventure tales. He has written New York Times best-selling novels and has received awards for his fiction and a television documentary. He is best known for his series of crime novels featuring the retired NSA agent Doc Ford, a marine biologist living on the Gulf Coast of southern Florida. White has contributed material on a variety of topics to numerous magazines and has lectured across the United States. A resident of Southwest Florida since 1972, he currently lives on Pine Island, Florida, where he is active in South Florida civic affairs and with the restaurant Doc Ford's Sanibel Rum Bar & Grill on nearby Sanibel Island.
White was born in Ashland, Ohio, and spent his early life on a small farm outside Pioneer, Ohio. His summers were spent in Rockingham, North Carolina, his mother's hometown. In the 1960s his family moved to Davenport, Iowa, where White attended Davenport Central High School and competed in baseball, football, and springboard diving. After graduating in 1968 he spent time in travel before settling in Southwest Florida in 1972. Although the Vietnam War was raging during those years, he performed no military service according to his own bio, yet there are persistent rumors that White maintained a classified relationship with a national intelligence agency while working for Outside Magazine and other magazines for which he traveled internationally and wrote. He is also close friends with noted author Peter Matthiessen whom, as has been documented, was co-founder of the Paris Review, which was financed by the Central Intelligence Agency. After "traveling" for five years after high school, White worked for the Fort Myers News-Press for four years during which time he obtained a captain's license. He then bought a used charter boat and operated as a light-tackle fishing guide at the Tarpon Bay Marina on Sanibel Island for thirteen years.
White began writing novels while working as a fishing guide. His first seven novels were written under the pen name Randy Striker. After the federal government closed Tarpon Bay to powerboat traffic he became a full-time adventurer and writer.
White has traveled extensively and participated in a wide variety of adventures, including dog sledding in Alaska, helping to re-establish Little League baseball in Cuba, and ferrying Cuban refugees to safety during the Mariel boatlift.
St. Martin's Press published his first Doc Ford novel, Sanibel Flats in 1990 with a three-book contract and option for the fourth. Dissatisfied with the money paid for and the scant promotion of his first three books, White signed with G.P. Putnam's Sons for the fourth book under much more favorable terms and has been with that publisher ever since.
Fiction by "Randy Striker"
Key West Connection (1981)
The Deep Six (1981)
Cuban Death-lift (1981)
The Deadlier Sex (1981)
Assassin's Shadow (1981)
Everglades Assault (1982)
Grand Cayman Slam (1982)
Doc Ford novels
Sanibel Flats (1990, St. Martin's Press, ISBN 0-312-92602-2)
The Heat Islands (1992, St. Martin's Press, ISBN 0-312-92977-3)
The Man Who Invented Florida (1993, St. Martin's Press, ISBN 0-312-09866-9)
Captiva (1996, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14140-5)
North of Havana (1997, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14242-8)
The Mangrove Coast (1998, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14372-6)
Ten Thousand Islands (2000, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14620-2)
Shark River (2001, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14729-2)
Twelve Mile Limit (2002, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-14873-6)
Everglades (2003, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15058-7)
Tampa Burn (2004, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15181-8)
Dead of Night (2005, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15244-X)
Dark Light (2006, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15336-5)
Hunter's Moon (2007, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15370-5)
Black Widow (2008, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 0-399-15456-6)
Dead Silence (2009, G.P. Putnam's Sons, ISBN 978-0-399-15540-6)
Deep Shadow (2010, G.P. Putnam's Sons
Batfishing in the Rainforest (1991, Lyons & Burford)
The Sharks of Lake Nicaragua: True tales of adventure, travel, and fishing (1999, Lyon's Press, ISBN 1-55821-904-8)
Last Flight Out: True tales of adventure, travel, and fishing (2002, Lyons Press, ISBN 1-58574-383-6)
"Dr. Pepper" in Outside 25: Classic tales and new voices from the frontiers of adventure, edited by Hal Espen (2002, W.W. Norton, ISBN 0-393-05186-2)
An American Traveler (2003, Lyons Press, ISBN 1-59228-033-1)
A Fishing Guide's Guide to Tropical Cooking (2006, Algonquin Press)
Randy Wayne White's Gulf Coast Cookbook: With memories and photos of Sanibel Island, photographs by Carlene Fredericka Brennen (2006, The Globe Pequot Press, ISBN 1-59228-096-X)
Contributions to periodicals
Contributing editor and columnist for Men's Journal
Contributing editor and columnist for Men's Health
Contributor to National Geographic Adventure
An editor-at-large of Outside
Gift of the Game (2003, Uncommon Productions, produced by Bill Haney and John MacNeil, directed by Bill Haney, written by Bill Haney and Randy Wayne White)
Awards and honors
"Best of Show" at the Woods Hole Film Festival for the documentary Gift of the Game.
Sanibel Flats on the list "Hundred Favorite Mysteries of the 20th Century" by the American Independent Mystery Booksellers Association.