The Whys and Wherefores, of Writing

I bought a collection of short stories last night by the American writer, James Lee Burke. It was the last of Mr Burke's books, to complete my collection. It's called The Convict and Other Stories. In his Introduction: Jailhouses, English Departments and the Electric Chair, he writes about his own experience as a writer; the…Read more The Whys and Wherefores, of Writing

Publishing is painful

Writing your first book is an apprenticeship and there are plenty of 'long stands'. I've written three books and, although TITO'S DEAD is the third, in my mind, it's my first. The 'first' was Sinead O'Connor, So Different, an unauthorised biography of the frequently celebrated, never celebrity and often castigated Irish singer. I remember saying…Read more Publishing is painful

Brendan Behan, a lion roaring in a wilderness

BRENDAN BEHAN died on March 20, 1964. Fifty years ago and I haven't heard a word about it by, or from,  my own Government, the National Broadcaster, RTE, by the National Theatre Company, The Abbey Theatre or by the Irish Film Institute, the national archive of Ireland's contribution to the film industry. So where, do…Read more Brendan Behan, a lion roaring in a wilderness

Hitchcock, storyteller The 39 Steps and The Lady Vanishes are the two most important formative films in the career of British born director, Alfred Hitchcock. That career spanned more than five decades. Thematically, there is little difference between their narrative devices in the ‘30s and his later works. What changed is the technology and the history.…Read more Hitchcock, storyteller