Almost eight years of Liath Luachra

A blast from the past with this old post (and draft cover) from 2015. At the time, I was still writing the first Liath Luachra book with the intention of using it as a prequel for the Fionn mac Cumhaill Series. That plan went kinda sideways. After an initial lacklustre reception on it’s publication, more… Read more »

A vulnerable – but feral – savage

This is a selection of some of the images I used when I was originally conceptualising the woman warrior Liath Luachra. This particular set (from Spanish artist/photographer Lídia Vives) visually captured the savage/thoughtful aspect of the character and proved a helpful prompt when writing. I’ll probably be using these again for the next book (Liath… Read more »

Screen versus Book

I dropped all my current work to spend a few days working on the series outline for this – basically updating it to incorporate ‘The Seeking‘ and ‘The Metal Men‘ into the final story of Liath Luachra. Writing for the screen is a very different way of writing compared to book writing – you really… Read more »

A Mythological Silhouette

Most striking topographical sites have mythological stories associated with them so it’s no real surprise to find so many linked to the dramatic silhouette that’s Binn Ghulbain – the peak of Gulbain (there’s still a lot of disagreement around what ‘Gulbain’ refers to, but it’s far better than the anglicized – and meaningless – ‘Benbulben’).… Read more »

A Conversation with Bodhmhall

I really enjoy writing dialogue – particularly when it’s a dialogue between two strong characters with diferent motivations. This is a quick sample of a conversation between the woman warrior Liath Luachra and the bandraoi (female druid) Bodhmhall, who joined her hunt for a díbhearg (raiding party) in a slightly underhand manner. At this point… Read more »

Liath Luachra: The Consent

One plotline that I’d hoped to return to in more detail with ‘The Metal Men’ was Liath Luachra’s relationship with Bressal Binnbéalach – Bressal of the Sweet Tongue – her old rígfénnid and sly ex-leader of Na Cinéaltaí. The interaction between Liath Luachra and Bressal was always one of my favourite elements from the first book in the… Read more »

Night View

The night view of Wellington City from Matiu Island – a small island in the centre of the harbour which is owned by the local iwi (tribe) and protected as conservation estate. I was privileged enough to spend a night out there recently and finished the last chapter outline for Liath Luachra: The Metal Men… Read more »

Liath Luachra: The Metal Men is done

Liath Luachra: The Metal Men (4th book in the Irish Woman Warerior Series) is now complete. I’m currently working with the artist to get the final covers sorted but all looks good for the planned release in March (patrons will get it earlier). I’m really pleased with the final result. The new back cover blurb… Read more »

The Music of What Happens

Once, as they rested during a hunt for wild deer, Fionn mac Cumhaill and his men debated what the finest music in the world might be. “Then tell us what it is,” said Fionn to Oisín, who’d started the discussion. “The cuckoo calling from the tree that’s highest in the hedge,” cried his son. Fionn… Read more »

Irish Imbas Projects for 2022

The nice thing about a decent holiday is that it gives you time and space to think outside the rut, to consider new possibilities or the need to change existing circumstances. Like everyone else, I think I’ve been pretty burned out from work and social stress since the emergence of the first Covid strain in… Read more »