Friday, October 31, 2008

Oíche Shamhna

But the night is Hallowe'en, lady,

The morn is Hallowday,

Then win me, win me, an ye will

For weel I wat ye may.

(Tam Lin)

Tonight is the Celtic New Year's Eve, a threshold time, when the world of Faerie crosses with this world and all those who live in Faerie, including the dead, walk abroad in our land. Some of you may not know that Hallowe'en is, in fact, based on the ancient pagan feast of Samhain. Readers of the fourth book in my Chronicles of Faerie series - The Book of Dreams - (out next spring for ye in America!) do know that the climactic scene in the book takes place on Hallowe'en.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Léim thart / Jump around

I love to use the Irish language in my books, particularly in The Chronicles of Faerie. I see it as a silver thread stitched through the story, like the elven languages Tolkien invented, except I didn't have to invent mine. (Buíochas le Dia.) Irish-American commedian Des Bishop fell in love with the language and did a hilarious and moving television programme on his efforts to become fluent in it. Check out his website: This is a fan made trailer using Des's recording of Léim thart.

Friday, October 24, 2008

More German Editions

Keep forgetting to announce my great news. Bertalsmann (Random House Germany) have bought two more of the Chronicles of Faerie series, The Summer King and The Light-Bearer's Daughter. They are in the process of being translated, but I'll announce their publication dates as soon as I know.

Monday, October 20, 2008

George Gently TV Trailer

Haven't been blogging lately because I've been working ... on George Gently. Got a little nixer as pre-production assistant to my pal Kathleen who's the Script Supervisor. Brilliant experience for a screen-writer, actually, as you see the script from a completely different viewpoint, i.e. broken up and inside out! And I LOVE this show. This is the new Morse and even better, which is saying a lot, as I was a big Morse fan. Yep, Chief Inspector Gently replaces dear departed Morse as the thinking woman's crumpet. Yum yum. And guess what. It's all shot here in Ireland in north Dublin and my own home county of Wicklow.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Pooh Wisdom

Sometimes a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it. (Winnie the Pooh)
Ah, yes, dear bear. This is something a writer often experiences. I LOVE Winnie the Pooh. I have even read him in Latin. Winnie Ille Pu. (I've also got a copy of Maria Poppina.) And here's a cute pic of Pooh Bear at Stonehenge pinched from this site: And what has this post to do with? The book I am writing right now. It's turning out quite different from the Thing I originally had inside me, but I am happy with it. Also it involves a stone circle.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

More Su Blackwell

Here is a bed for a fairy queen. I love this artist's work. I mentioned on either this blog or my t'other blog that I was thinking of sending her one of my books, as she makes amazing book-cut paper sculptures. So I did send her a copy of The Light-Bearer's Daughter. Her website again if you haven't already had a look:

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Paulo Coelho in Ireland (Was)

Okay, whether or not the writer of the comments on my post below is indeed bestselling author Paulo Coelho, he is certainly correct when he says the author visited Ireland in 1999. He was invited by film-maker Liam McGrath to do a documentary on the 'moving statues' phenomenon that raged across the country in the impoverished 1980's. (Don't ask. I'm not going there.) Given Coelho's love for the Blessed Virgin, this is not surprising. Given that he was actually here, his strange and disconcerting presentation of Ireland is. Nonetheless I stand here, well, sit here, WITH EGG ON MY FACE. And it just goes to show, one should be careful about what one says on the Web, because you never know who's listening! Now I'm off to dance.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Paulo Coelho in Ireland (Not)

Most people either love him or hate him. I'm ambivalent. Every time I read another one (and I have read just about everything), I begin with "My God, this man is a fraud. How does he get away with it? The writing is WOEFUL!" and then I end up reading the whole thing because there is something there, something that catches me, i.e. an occasional flicker of serious soul stuff. Now I am reading Brida, supposedly set in Ireland, and of course my immediate reaction is "My God, this man is a fraud. How does he get away with it?" Paulo, Paulo, if you are going to set a book in a country that you know nothing about, at least have the decency to visit it or failing that, do a bit of research. Here are a few instant points:
1) there are no snakes or scorpions under any rocks in Ireland and no Irish woman would think there might be
2) if you travel 90 miles from Dublin and then go another 3 hours in a bus, you are most likely drowning in the sea or the ocean
3) no self-respecting witch in Ireland (or anywhere else for that matter) would call herself "Wicca"
4) and while I am on names, Brida O'Fern is the most ridiculous makey-up Irish name I have ever heard. Also is her boyfriend Irish? Because "Lorens" is pretty ludicrous too.
5) your descriptions of so-called Moon and Sun Traditions in Ireland are bizarre and unbelievable, given that you present them as utterly divorced from ancient Irish traditions.
6) as for your descriptions of the Irish landscape - could you not even have GLANCED at a picture of the country, for godsakes?
7) Oh and barges with sailors and pleasure boats on the Liffey - now that's funny.
8) I understand that local dialogue can be difficult but these people don't even sound remotely Irish in word or cadence.
And I'm not even half-way through the book yet ...
So, you've got a story you want to tell and you just throw a dart at the globe and that's where it is set?