Phil Mickelson’s book draws attention to author Alan Shipnuck

Writer Alan Shipnuck said he had no vendetta or ill will towards Phil Mickelson, and no regrets for the backlash he

Writer ALAN SHIPNUCKThe life of has “been a whirlwind” since he published an excerpt from his book “PHIL: THE HEART (AND UNAUTHORIZED!) BIOGRAPHY OF GOLF’S MOST COLORFUL SUPERSTAR” retailer PHIL MICHELSON“the life and desire to be part of a rival Saudi-backed golf tour,” according to John Devine of the MONTEREY HERALD. Shipnuck said he “knew the snippet would spark some discussion and some controversy”, but “never imagined the level of blowback on Phil”. Interview requests from media around the world “have not stopped for Shipnuck since the excerpt was published”. Another excerpt was released last week detailing that Mickelson had “allegedly lost $40 million gambling”. Shipnuck: “It’s 90% annoying, as a journalist you never want to be the story.” Shipnuck also had to “deal with those who defend Mickelson.” But he got “a lot of support from players and officials in the golf world”. Shipnuck: “There is a small vocal minority that defends Phil. But I had at least 15 major people in the game, from players to agents who were very supportive and thanked me for telling the world what Phil was doing. Shipnuck “made it clear that he had no vendetta or ill will towards Mickelson”. The backlash Shipnuck faced was “met with no regrets” (MONTEREY HERALD, 5/12).

THE PERFECT STORM: Public relations firm Owner of the CRPR group CHRIS REIMER, a former PGA Tour communications manager with experience facilitating media availability for players, said the lead-up to the book’s release was “‘a perfect storm’ of events that made the most intense hype for any golf book he can remember.” Reimer: “It’s been an incredible mix of timing, starting with Phil winning the PGA last year and everything going on with LIV Golf. Phil would be a fascinating study anyway, because of the electrifying player he was, his flair, everything he did for the game. But take all of that, plus the events that happened, and it all adds up to make the preparation of this book truly unique. Reimer said that Shipnuck and his editor “couldn’t have scripted it any better”. Reimer: “When you’re developing a PR campaign, there are key ‘tent post moments’. You want to stay relevant, create anticipation and stay in the news. Phil’s comments about LIV Golf, then missing the Masters, whether he’ll play the PGA next week…the story just keeps on living and you want this to be in the PR world” (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 5/16).

Mickelson’s fan base will find new reasons to adore him while his critics will find new ammunition to use against himGetty Images

LOOKING FOR ANSWERS: GOLFWEEK’s Adam Schupak writes that the book seeks the “answer” to “who is the real Phil Mickelson”. Mickelson has “always been the proverbial riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma”. But at the end of this “page-turner”, we will have a “better idea” of who Mickelson is. His fanbase will “find new reasons to adore him even more” while his “detractors will find new ammunition to claim he’s one of the all-time imposters.” The opening chapter establishes a “wonderful rhythm going from one outrageous story to another”. Looks like Shipnuck “gathered a bunch of Phil acquaintances around a campfire” and they’re “preparing their best collection of Phil tales.” “Easy reading, weighing only 239 pages.” Shipnuck “could easily have written 50, 75, … 100 more pages and readers would surely have eaten them like catnip.” Shipnuck presents both Mickelson’s “good and bad” and “leaves it to the reader to decide where they come out of in the end” (, 5/16).

Angela C. Hale