I am the first to admit it, I am a day-dreamer. I am social to a certain extent but I have to say that I am happiest in my own company. I love creating characters, making up interesting and challenging scenarios for them to deal with. To a certain extent I live vicariously through them. It works for me!
What do your fans mean to you?
Its early days. My version of fans are my mum, boyfriend and my sisters. Someday I will hopefully be contacted by people who enjoyed my work. When that day comes I will be ecstatic.
What are you working on next?
I am really excited about this one. I wrote a short story that was recently long listed in the 'Fish Publishing Short Story Prize'. I got some good feedback on it and I am starting to develop it into a novel. It is set in Italy at the turn of the Twentieth Century. An English gentleman visiting Florence is invited to a private club. He meets a strange man there who gives him an offer he cannot refuse. It is something that I have wanted to work on for a while, but publicising 'The Rise of the Sidhe' has been a lot more time consuming than I could have ever imagined. The end is in sight though, so I have started outlining the book and will hopefully start writing in the next few weeks.. Fingers crossed!
Who are your favorite authors?
I have a varied taste, I love a bit of everything so it would be hard to choose. I do have a couple of authors I read again and again. Stephen King, George R.R. Martin and Neil Gaiman. They are exceptional!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I love films, TV shows, reading and I am a big history buff. These days I end up spending most of my time keeping up with the social media side of things for the book but hopefully it will soon fall into a pattern and I can get back a bit more free time.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. This is embarrassing but here goes: when I was six I wrote a pop-up picture book. It centred on a Native American boy and his best friend (an eagle) and their adventures together. It got thrown out many years ago. Unfortunately I cannot say the same about my little book of poetry from when I was eight! It's still knocking about at my mum's house!
What is your writing process?
I do not have one. I would be lying if I said I did. I get an idea. Then I start thinking of exciting times, places, people and names- it goes from there. I do sketch out a general plot but my best ideas come quick and fast. I can't plan anything meticulously.
How do you approach cover design?
I have fun with it. I try to think of what I would pick up, what would appeal to me. People do judge books by the covers. I like to experiment with images, colours and designs. I really don't have the budget to pay a pro, so, I enlist the help of my very talented and artistic friends. We throw together as much as we can. Variety is the spice of life!
What are your five favorite books, and why?
1. The Hunger- Whitley Strieber, for his excellent female characters and his reworking of the vampire myth. 2. It- Stephen King, for his ability to create the world and terrors of your childhood. 3. The Shining- Stephen King, because I feel like I know people who shine, even if it is just a little. 4. Pride and Prejudice- Jane Austen, for making me fall in love with reading from a very young age. 5. Complete Works of Oscar Wilde- because he was a great Irishman and because his writing makes me laugh and cry in equal measures.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I am from Belfast originally but I grew up and still live in Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland. There are elements of the history of this town in the book. The de Verduns in the story are named after the Norman family who built Roach Castle, not ten minutes from my house. Castle's figure quite a bit here. There are two outside my house, Cuchullainn's Castle (A rumoured smugglers passage leads to the bay and was built by Pirate Byrne) and Bellewscastle, which is attached to Dun Lughaidh Secondary School (pronounced Done Louis). It is the place Cromwell stayed when he was sacking Drogheda. I went to this school, so a castle was bound to creep in there somewhere. I used this as inspiration when I described the manor in the book.
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