IT'S SAGA SATURDAY!! Please welcome debut novelist Eimear Lawlor...

 What is your favourite thing about yourself?

It would be an emotional. I am incredibly empathetic, and sometimes I feel the pain for others. My husband says I maybe am too empathetic, and I should be a stronger person, and often I need to stand up for myself more, but I like that quality.


In 2016  my only daughter passed away unexpectedly, and I really lost my empathy for a few years, which I didn't like about myself. During the early days of COVID, I read about a guy who worked in ITV and died suddenly due to COVID. He had been in the process of adopting his girlfriend's son. His brother shared some of his Tweets that he was in the process of adopting him and how excited he was. And, he was dead two weeks later. I thought that was so sad. I felt I had my empathy back.


 What do you wish you'd known before you started writing?

It's more I  wish I had started writing when I was young. I used to think I would like to be a writer because books were always in my life. First, it was picture books, my first album was a Tom and Jerry annual, and I would make up stories about the pictures, and it would be a different story every night. I am not religious, but I remember I got the old testament kids picture book, and I used to make up stories about Moses in the wicker basket. I have been reading since I opened my eyes.


I had been astay at home mum after I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1999. My health didn't deteriorate. I had a few relapses but always recovered. I only started writing in 2014 when my daughter told me to do something with my life other than drinking coffee with my friends. I enrolled in a creative writing course and surprised myself I actually had the imagination to write, and it gave me the confidence to put pen to paper.


Share a romantic moment in your life.

It would be the day I got married. I met my husband John in London when I was twenty-six, and we were engaged within six months and married a year later. We probably would have got married sooner, but we were moving back to Ireland, and it was hard to arrange a wedding from London. I had been in previous relationships that were much longer, but when you know it is right, there's no point wasting time. And both of us wanted a family.


Is there one subject you'd never write about as an author? What is it?

I'm still a new writer, so I don't think I have written enough to reject any ideas. I would think anything of a violent sexual nature. I wouldn't mind writing how it would affect a person emotionally, but I couldn't descriptively write about the actual act of sex abuse.



Do you have any suggestions to help someone become a better writer? If so, what are they?

First, it is to write, but you have to read to see how proper writing is successful. And if the writing doesn't work in a story, get rid of it. That is something I found really difficult to grasp. Now I have a folder on my computer called "Kill my Darlings." I think I used to be precious about my writing, and think, Why don't they like it? But, if it impedes the story, no one will want to read it.


Also, it is really important to read as much as you can. If writing about a particular period, it is a definite requirement to read as much fiction in that era.


Don't take criticism of your writing too much to heart. Writing is like marmite, everyone likes different things. Seek out constructive criticism on how you can improve your writing. Some writers can be very mean, but there are plenty 



If you could be the original author for any book, which book would it be? Why? 

It is a toss between Nightingale by Hannah Kristan and Where The Crawdads Sing. But if I have to choose between them, it would Where The Crawdads Sing. It was the writing sung to me, and gently bring me on a journey in gentle waves. The writing was descriptive and deeply emotionally connected with my Kya, the main character. Funny, she lives in a swamp, but her descriptions made it a beautiful place. My only criticism was I would like her to have had a family. She did marry the love of her life, but children made me complete for me.


What are you working on at the moment?


I am working on a novel set in Ireland during World War Two. Ireland was neutral, but it wasn't as neutral as people thought. There were many German spies here, and our intelligence G2 was working with MI5 and Bletchley Park. Germany was going to invade Northern Ireland and then come south. And Ireland declared neutrality because there were still memories of the War of Independence. If Germany invaded Ireland, it would mean British troops would be back in Ireland and we had only got our Independence from Britain in 1921, and then a bitter civil war broke out for two years.



   Do you work on one book at a time? More?

I used to like to write short stories, but now I find it better to concentrate on one thing. To get a break mentally from it, I run, swim, or walk. The swimming pools are currently closed, but I am lucky to live in Kilkenny's beautiful medieval city where we have a beautiful castle and lovely walks around it. 

Book Trailer

Amazon Buy Link:

Falling in love with the enemy is the ultimate act of betrayal...

1917. A farm girl from Cavan, Veronica McDermott is desperate to find more to life than peeling potatoes. Persuading her family to let her stay with her aunt and uncle in Dublin so she can attend secretarial college, she has no idea what she is getting into. Recruited by Fr Michael O'Flanagan to type for Eamon De Valera, Veronica is soon caught up in the danger and intrigue of those fighing for Ireland's independence from Britain.

The attentions of a handsome British soldier, Major Harry Fairfax, do not go unnoticed by Veronica's superiors. But when Veronica is tasked with earning his affections to gather intelligence for Sinn Féin, it isn't long before her loyalty to her countrymen and her feelings for Harry are in conflict. To choose one is to betray the other...

Inspired by real life events and marking the centenary of the end of the War of Independence, Dublin's Girl is a thrilling historical debut from an exciting new Irish voice.

For more information about Eimear Lawlor...

No comments

Post a comment