Glanaphuca on stage in Rehearsed Reading

Glanaphuca, my stage play based on my novel The Lake will be in rehearsed reading in my local town of Dalkey at 7.30pm on Friday 9th June 2017. Come along, and be a part of the exciting process that is the development of new Irish theatre.

See contemporary stars of the screen and stage, including Mary Murray, Fiona-Lucia McGarry and Eric O’Brien work under the direction of Stephen Murray (below), all in the comfortable environs of The Vico, above The Queens pub.

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Free admission, a voluntary contribution of €5 will go towards production costs.

castle and Queens

With thanks to Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Arts Office Emerging Artists’ Bursary.

Hey, Author!

Hey, Author! is my very own place to find out things about my favourite authors that other blogs just don’t ask. The nitty-gritty. The dirt. The skinny.

Not stuff about their forthcoming books, or their writing process, none of that high-brow shenanigans thank you – no – Hey, Author! is about getting to know the person behind the bestseller.

So let’s get to it.

Ask anyone in the literary know in Dublin town who the nicest local authors are and Sinéad Moriarty will be on most lists. And she’s been around Dublin a while – her latest The Good Mother, is Sinéad’s twelfth novel and I’ve no doubt that her loyal fans are already waiting impatiently for her thirteenth.

Sinead Moriarty pic

She’s certainly a busy girl, but I still managed to track her down and grill her on behalf of my lovely Hey, Author! readers. So here goes.

We like the look of your latest novel, Ms. Moriarty. But before we don our wellies and head out in the spring showers to our nearest bookshop, there are some things we need to know.

What is your:

Favourite night out in your hometown?

I love indoor/outdoor spaces. We used to be so rubbish at it in Ireland but now there are lots of lovely places to sit out in. The rooftop bar in the Dean Hotel is a great place to have a drink. The open air bar at House is also lovely at night with all the lights twinkling. For some reason I feel like I’m away when I’m sitting outside sipping wine, there is a holiday feel to it.

Favourite skincare/haircare product?

John Frieda Frizz Ease. As the French hairdresser exclaimed this summer, “you ‘ave the ‘air of ze man who is in the field to scare the birds away”. Yes, my natural hair texture is scarecrow-esque. So Frizz-ease is a miracle as far as I’m concerned.

scarecrow

Recent Sinead Moriarty dust-jacket photo…(not really – Ed)

Favourite book of all time? (Just one!)

I have to say Pat McCabe’s The Dead School. It changed the way I viewed writing. What he does with words is extraordinary. His deeply black humour makes it seem like a sin to be laughing but you can’t help it, despite the darkness of his characters. I think he’s a genius.

Dead School

Favourite clothes shop?

I’m a shopaholic. Because I spend so much time in front a computer and work alone, my ‘coffee breaks’ involve me surfing the net for clothes and shoes. My latest obsession is The Outnet, you can get some really good deals online. But I do love a good browse and Brown Thomas is always a pleasure to spend time in. (We also loved the dress you wore at the launch of The Good Mother. Stylish. – Ed)

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Favourite restaurant anywhere in the world?

The most spectacular restaurant I’ve ever been to – mainly because of the view – is the Château de La Chèvre d’Or in Eze in the south of France. The restaurant is set on the cliff’s edge. Stunning views.

Favourite bar anywhere in the world?

I spent a lot of time in Sheehans pub on Chatham street in Dublin as a student. I have enjoyed many fun and rowdy nights there over the years, so it always has a special place in my heart.

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Favourite movie?

The Old Maid – it’s a Bette Davis classic and I love it. It reminds me of watching old Black and White movies with Mum and my sister on rainy days. Bette Davis was a real star and her performance in this very moving film is fantastic.

Bette Davis

Favourite band/musician?

Since as far back as I can remember I’ve loved U2. I had posters and calendars of them all over my bedroom wall as a teenager and I still love what they do. Their ability to stick together through thick and thin and produce incredible music over decades is extraordinary. They were, for a very long time, our best export. (Roll on 22nd July! –  Ed)

Favourite meal?

Roast chicken and mash potatoes followed by apple and blackberry crumble with custard. Bliss!

Favourite tipple?

I love a cold glass of fizz. I think the bubbles give you a lift and I always feel a bit decadent drinking bubbles, no matter where I am or what the occasion is. Life can be difficult, so sometimes a glass of fizz can lift your spirits.

champers

We couldn’t agree with you more, Sinéad, and what else could one quaff when whiling away the hours plotting one’s 13th novel on the cliffs overlooking the Mediterranean?

Bottoms up, girl.

If you haven’t already got yourself a copy of The Good Mother, off with you. By all accounts it should come with a mascara-alert and box of Kleenex, but you can judge that for yourselves.

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I’m off to get my own copy, and take it to the roof bar of the Dean Hotel.

Hallelujah, here She comes…

Until next time.

Sheena x

More Rehearsed Readings…

I was delighted to be involved with The Corps Ensemble’s New Writing Night on Sunday last at the Viking theatre in Clontarf.

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Rehearsed readings of new plays are simply a fantastic way for writers to learn their craft and improve their work. Other writers hearing their work read were Hillary Dziminski, Stewart Roche and Stephen Jones and Jed Murray (below).

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They are also a great way for writers, producers, directors and actors to meet, and for writers to observe a real, live audience’s reaction to their work. It certainly beats coercing your non-actor friends into readings around the kitchen table on Saturday nights! (And those gigs are EXPENSIVE when you factor in the wine-bribery required…)

Check out some of the cast at work in front of a packed audience…

 

…and watch out for The Corps Ensemble’s production of Mark O’Rowe’s Made in China – coming to a theatre near you next month…

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Hey, Author!

Hey, Author! is my very own place to find out things about my favourite authors that other blogs just don’t ask. The nitty-gritty. The dirt. The skinny.

Not stuff about their forthcoming books, or their writing process, none of that high-brow shenanigans thank you – no – Hey, Author! is about getting to know the person behind the bestseller.

So let’s get to it.

My own second novel The Lake was published by HarperCollins on their Killer Reads imprint. I was lucky enough to be part of the first group of digital-first Killer Reads authors back in 2015 along with the fantastic Chris Curran, whose second novel Her Turn to Cry is out now, much to the delight of her many fans who raved about her first novel Mindsight.

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And wait for it – Chris will be launching the paperback of her new book at Hastings Pier Shop on Saturday 26th November 2016 between 12 and 3pm! Sure where else would you be?! You can grill her on her answers to the questions below in person there, and see the beautiful sights of Hastings while you are at it. Fantastic!

So let’s get started!

Hey, author. We like the look of your book. We might even buy it and read it. But first, there are some things we need to know. What is your:

Favourite night out in your hometown?

Drinks at sunset on Hastings Pier. Then a wander down to the Old Town for dinner in one of the many wonderful fish restaurants. Webbe’s is my favourite just now. It’s opposite the fish market and you can see the boats drawn up on the shingle so you know everything is just out of the sea. Then we might take in some live music at Porters wine bar.

Favourite skincare/haircare product?

I’m a bit of a cheapskate so I usually go for anything on offer, but I do like Olay because my mum used when it was called Oil of Ulay. I always thought that sounded like something from The Arabian Nights and that it might have magic powers. On evidence collected to date however it doesn’t!

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Favourite book of all time? (Just one!)

Oh no, that is too hard! Rebecca was the novel that made me want to write psychological crime, but my oldest and still my best love is a children’s book: Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce. For me it has more profound things to say about love, time, growing up and growing old than many a Booker or Pulitzer Prize winner. Each time I reread it I find new things to savour.

tom-mid-garden

Favourite clothes shop?

I have a dilemma because I don’t much enjoy shopping of any kind, but I do like clothes. Zara’s stuff often appeals to me and seems to fit me pretty well and I buy the occasional posh dress from Hobbs. Oh, and I do like rummaging for something vintage in a nice charity shop.

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Favourite restaurant anywhere in the world?

Crannog in Fort William, overlooking Loch Linney. They smoke their own fish and serve fabulous Scottish cheeses and puddings to die for.

Favourite bar anywhere in the world?

Dry Martini, Barcelona. Old-fashioned style par excellence. White coated waiters, comfortable armchairs, mellow jazz in the background and of course the best cocktails ever.

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Favourite movie?

Nothing beats the oldies for me and if I could write a novel with a storyline as brilliant as Hitchcock’s Rear Window I’d die happy. However Some Like It Hot is an unbeatable joy. Hilarious Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis in his handsome youth channeling a great Cary Grant accent and some sublime shimmying from Marilyn Monroe, achingly vulnerable as the gorgeous Sugar.

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Favourite band/musician?

It’s mostly oldies again and moody for preference. Billy Holliday, Dusty Springfield, Lou Reed, Van Morrison, Amy Winehouse and, to help me stay calm and cheerful when I’m driving and improve my French at the same time, I keep a Charles Trenet CD in the car.

Favourite meal?

My own lemon and black pepper roast chicken with crispy potatoes followed by homemade crème caramel. Ideally eaten with family and friends in the garden or in front of a lovely fire.

Favourite tipple?

Grey Goose vodka with Fentimans tonic, ice and a slice of lime.

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Well, that makes a change from all those gin-swilling authors I’ve interviewed! I like your style, Ms. Curran.

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You can get your mitts on a copy of Chris Curran’s latest Killer Reads thriller Her Turn To Cry here, and do follow her on twitter here.

Thanks you for sharing your secret hideouts with us Chris! I can’t decide if I want to visit Hastings or Fort William more. After Barcelona, of course. As Charles Trenet might say,

BOUM!

 

Until next time on Hey, Author!

Sheena x

Open Mic Success!

Last night I was lucky enough to be at Dalkey Creates’ Open Mic event in Finnegans’ pub, Dalkey (where Michelle Obama hangs out when she’s in Dublin, dontcha know).

It was a fantastic success, not least because of the diversity of work being read. We had local ladies reading their poetry, stand-up comedians, short stories and rap. This guy, Alex, even showed up and wowed the crowd with his stuff. (He’s in the TV show Vikings….get with it, people.)

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We had a Patrick Kavanagh Award winner, a local pharmacist, Maeve Binchy’s husband Gordon Sewell and a young writer who brought the old craft of story-telling back to life, and managed to quieten an entire rowdy pub as she did it. All writers, some experienced, some starting off, all listening to and enjoying each other’s work.

It was the perfect example of how an Open Mic event should be – complete with a few spot prizes thanks to local businesses and the wonderful host Al Finnegan.

This is why I write. This is why I want to be a part of this life. These people came to share their work with strangers, to entertain, to get a reaction to their writing and to react to another’s. It’s scary – I know – it’s difficult to leave your writing desk and put your work out there to be heard, to be judged.

But do it. Share your work. Share others’. This is what it’s all about. This is life.

http://www.dalkeycreates.com

Tweet Nothings…

Join me on Thursday the 6th October at 8pm GMT (3pm in New York) for a twitter chat about writing classes and workshops.

Do they work, or are they a waste of time and money for struggling writers?

The chat is being hosted by #writerswise and promises to be full of information and other writers’ thoughts on the subject.

So join in – follow me @shewithonee and use the hashtag #writerswise when you tweet!

i-like-writing

Hey, Author!

Hey, Author! is my very own place to find out things about my favourite authors that other blogs just don’t ask. The nitty-gritty. The dirt. The skinny.

Not stuff about their forthcoming books, or their writing process, none of that high-brow shenanigans thank you – no – Hey, Author! is about getting to know the person behind the bestseller.

So let’s get to it.

It’s the turn of Carmel Harrington, who many of you will know from her regular appearances on TV as well as the Wexford Literary Festival of which she is a founding member. Carmel’s much anticipated fourth novel, The Things I Should Have Told You will be published 8th September 2016.

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So, Happy Mrs. H. We like the look of your book. We might even buy ourselves a copy. But first you need to tell us, what is your:

Favourite night out in your hometown?

I’m a dinner and drinks kind of gal. We’ve a great gang of friends in Wexford and when we all get together, it’s guaranteed to be a good night. A gin and tonic in The Sky & The Ground first, followed by dinner in Cistin Eile, then back home to Screen, to our local Freddies, for an after dinner drink!

 

Favourite skincare/haircare product?

Currently in love with all Emma Hardie products, in particular the Moringa Cleansing Balm. It cleanses and moisturises in one go, leaving my skin squeaky clean. Smells divine too. It can also be used as a rescue balm or left on for ten minutes as a mask. Fab product.

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Favourite book of all time? (Just one!)

Little Women. When I read that, as a young girl, I was Jo. I understood her. I think I’m overdue another visit to the March family. I named our home, Orchard House, (where the March family lived) as a nod of my love to that book.

little-women

Favourite clothes shop?

I love River Island, but do most of my shopping online, with ASOS.com.

Favourite restaurant anywhere in the world?

Oh, that’s tough! I’m going to say, The FACIL restaurant in Berlin. It has 2 Michelin stars, not too shabby! I surprised my husband with a weekend break in Berlin for his fortieth birthday. We had the most incredible meal here. The food was a culinary experience, from the moment they ushered us to our seats and gave my handbag it’s own stool (honestly!), to the eight courses of sublime food we managed to consume.

Favourite bar anywhere in the world

There’s a rooftop bar, called Bookmarks, in the Library Hotel, on Madison Avenue in New York. It’s an indoor/outdoor bar and they have a cocktail, called The Pulitzer, which is pretty much my idea of heaven – a gin and elderflower liqueur combination.

Favourite movie?

Frankie and Johnny. It’s a Gary Marshall movie and one of his most under-rated, in my opinion!

Johnny, played by Al Pacino, newly released from prison, starts to work in a restaurant, with Frankie, a waitress, played by Michelle Pfeiffer. It’s a beautiful love story, quirky, full of hope. And always makes me smile.

frankie-johnny

Favourite band/musician?

Right now, I’m in an Adele state of mind. But I’m going to see one of my teen crushes soon – Paul Young, when he comes to play in Wexford. Oh my!

 paul-young

Favourite meal?

Ok, brace yourself, I’m going to mention the C word. In September. You see, my favourite meal is the Christmas Dinner. Traditional Turkey and Ham, with homemade cranberry sauce, parsnip mashed potato, roast vegetables, stuffing, gravy, the works! I’m hungry just thinking about it.

 

dinne-in-a-can

(Oh, I’m sorry Carmel – did you mean THIS Christmas Dinner?! LOL – Ed)

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Favourite tipple?

Gin and tonic, all the way. At the moment, I love The Blackwater Distillery Strawberry Gin with Poachers Well Premium Irish Tonic made with Wexford spring water, Florida orange & Irish rosemary. A sublime combination!

strawberry-gin

Sublime indeed! I think you and the lovely Hazel Gaynor need to get together and sort out the Gs from the Ts. Experts in the field, it seems.

Well, Carmel, we love your new book’s pretty cover, and we are very excited to get stuck in and find out what exactly it is that she should have told him!

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You can follow Carmel on twitter here, and on Facebook here.

Don’t forget to check out Carmel’s back catalogue of books too! So much good, cosy reading for the cold winter nights ahead.

Until next time on Hey, Author!

Sheena x