Interview with Brighid O'Sullivan

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Western Massachusetts. Holyoke actually, which at that time was a very Irish neighborhood. My great grandparents came from County Cork Ireland to work on the canal in Holyoke, which also was the home of one of the largest St. Patrick's Day parade in the whole country. My father was very proud of being Irish, played Irish music, cooked corned beef and cabbage and told us Irish stories whenever we would sit still. He even claimed he had two private leprechauns, Sean and Mike who would look over my well-being when my father died. I would later find out that leprechauns were not really warm and fuzzy lil creatures at all but devious and cunning. My father also told me he worked on a newspaper at one time. I guess between his stories and the Irish influence, I grew curious about my Irish heritage as I grew older. I've been there twice so far, once to see all the sites I wrote about in my book, The Sun Palace.
When did you first start writing?
Oh, I've been writing since I was a child, since I could hold a pencil actually. I used to do book reports in 4th grade, even before they were assigned for extra credit. I loved writing plays too and poetry. I love poetry.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I started reading Irish history and found a story called Tristan and Isolde. I thought it would be fun to tell my own version of the same story. When I started writing I became interested in one of the minor characters I made up. At this time in my tale, the character was all grown up so I started exploring her past and found her to be very interesting so I went back in time to when she was a young girl so I guess you could say the second book will actually be what should have been the first book because my characters really had not been born yet. Its all very complicated I know. Just read the book.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
When I looked at the options and the fact that most traditional publishers won't do any publicity at all for a new unknown author, it just didn't make sense to take a smaller cut of the pie (much smaller) if I was going to do all that work myself. I also wanted to have control over the process.
What are you working on next?
Several things. Presently I'm working on a sort of love story between two people in the early rebellious period of Ireland around the beginning of the Irish Civil War, Constance and Casmir Markievicz.. Constance Markievicz is well known for her political actions toward the end of her life but there are some very good biographies on her as well. I want to show another side of Constance and the relationship between her and Casi, which was always close, despite rumors that their marriage was filled with strife. I don't buy that. I think their relationship was complex and based on mutual friendship and love and yes, sometimes different points of view. Both characters are fascinating and deserve a closer look. Later I'll do a sequel to The Sun Palace..
Who are your favorite authors?
Above all, my favorite author is Diana Gabaldon, author of the Outlander series.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Reading, traveling and spending time with my very supportive husband and grandchildren. They are my life.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
a Kindle!!
Describe your desk
My desk is usually a bit cluttered. I have a laptop and there are usually several research books on one end and a notebook. I also have begun to use index cards so I have a box for that. OH and I have an Irish bus on my desk that my wonderful husband got me in an antique store.
What is your long-term goal with your writing, besides success I mean?
I would like to see more Irish and Irish American people educated on Irish history. Any of us who have relatives that have emigrated here to America should be very grateful for both countries. The Irish have gone through, famine, war, prejudice, hardship, and the loss of their family back home. People should not forget the sacrifices they made for us. They should know about both countries and be proud. Its who I am and its who a lot of us are.
What do your fans mean to you?
I cherish every letter that is sent me. I'm a big fan of personal contact and I love reading more than anything. I used to write snail-mail before the internet. When I was fifteen I had a whole trash bag full of pen pal letters.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Wondering what to work on next and the excitement of it.
Published 2014-10-24.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Prelude to Assassination
Price: Free! Words: 3,200. Language: English. Published: September 16, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Historical » USA
This is a true story based on the diaries of Fanny Seward, daughter of William H Seward,, Secretary of State to Abraham Lincoln. Several days before Lincoln's assassination, Seward had a severe and almost deadly carriage accident of which his daughter was a witness. The night Lincoln was assassinated, Seward, who was still recovering from the accident, had an attack on his own life as well.