May Blog: Poetry and Patience

May feels as though it was a marathon month and as it comes to an end I have to admit I’m feeling a little exhausted. But it’s all good. I took some time off at the beginning of the month of focus on my novel, Bitten By A Dog On Tuesday, and that proved to be very fruitful. I met my writing targets every day and made great headway with the story in general. It was fantastic to be able to write full time for a week and, while challenging at times, has reinforced my longing to move away from the day job and spending more time doing what I love. Obviously it’s not as simple as all that, with a mortgage and bills and all the usual everyday stuff, but it’s nice to dream, and you might as well dream big. BBADOT has seen some serious additions, including a new victim at the hands of my protagonist, John. This new character, a woman running a puppy farm, is now his first victim in the story and this propels him on to his next target, a man named Quigley who features heavily in the plot. Another change, and one that surprised even me, is that Padraig (mild mannered country man) is now having an affair (…sort of) with Gina from Doncaster. I’ve no idea who Gina is or why she’s from Doncaster, she just appeared in the story. Now Padraig is faced with a dilemma and I feel it adds to the overall story but especially to Padraig and Michela’s (his wife) reconciliation when their son goes missing later in the story. Other additions and some tough editing have hopefully strengthened the story and I’m consistently moving towards a manuscript that I’ll be happy to approach agents and publishers with.

Last Thursday I attended the Poetry Ireland / Trócaire Competition Awards Ceremony in the National Library of Ireland, where I came joint runner-up in the unpublished poets category (i.e. poets who have not published a book of poetry). Given that there were over 1000 entries, and based on the high standard of the other poets there on the day, I was absolutely delighted. It was a lovely morning of poetry from all age groups and the special guests (Geraldine Mitchell and Jane Clarke) read beautifully. The theme of the competition was Forced to Flee: This is Our Exodus, so needless to say it was quite an emotive morning. I’d highly recommend any poets to participate in the competition in future years, as it really is a great platform and a wonderful experience. My poem is below and the entire booklet can be downloaded here.

Moments of Snow

Now I need to write a treatment for a short film, finish BBADOT, research and write my next novel (historical fiction, but obviously with a few murders thrown in for good measure, that I’ve already been asked to submit to an agent for his review… when I get around to writing it), keep submitting poetry and fiction for publication and competitions, and somehow manage to keep everything on the backburner from bubbling over. Oh, and have a day job. I’m not evening trying to fit “have a life” in there at the moment.

Wish me luck.

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