Friday 25 January 2013

The Next Big Thing

The Next Big Thing

Last week I was asked by Trish Nugent, the eminent writer and part-time actress, to join an on-line blogging chain-''The Next Big Thing.

We met at Christmas Twitter Single last year and at the launch of Louise Phillips book 'Red Ribbons.'  Every occasion was illuminating, enlightening and.....great craic.  I also met Jillian Godsil, Susan Condon, Deirdre Tracey and Annemarie Miles and, naturally, the creator of TXS, Brenda Drumm.  These women are all wonderful reasons for being on Twitter.  

Trish Nugent can be found at and on twitter @Trish_Nugent.   Looking forward to her book of poetry, due soon 'The Bisto Tin.'

My Next Big Thing

I'm writing a young adult book about life on Tara around 200A.D.  The story centres around a young woman who has been kidnapped from her home in Wales and is taken to marry the Chieftain of Tara.  She meets people who do not want her to be a part of the royal family. However she slowly assimilates into their lifestyle.  She has a family but not without heartache.  Her first born is healthy, her second doesn't survive and her final son has a disability.  She will also have to deal with the Celtic tradition of fostering boys between families at the age of seven.  

What is the working title for your book?

Yseult (pronounced ee-salt) 

Where did the idea come from for the book?

I moved near Tara 20 years ago.  At first I couldn't see what the hype was about.  Then I started walking around the hill on a regular basis.  Little by little, I fell in love with it: The Mound of Hostages, Grainne's Rath, the Sloping Trenches and the little Fairy Tree with artefacts and messages of hope stuck to the branches.  I wondered about Tara during it's glory days, after all, 143 Kings were crowned at the Lia Fail.

What genre does your book fall under?

It's young adult fiction with historical background.

Which actors would you choose in a movie rendition of your book?

I'd choose Gemma Arterton as my leading lady.  She has the right mixture between looking aloof and snapping into action when needed.  For the leading man I'd choose Eric Bana because he's very, ahem, er, talented.  

What is the one sentence synopsis for your book?

Kidnapped, Yseult knows she has to adapt or die with her captors.  

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your novel?

It has taken me a year so far.  The story is a labour of love and all I wish is that my son may read it in years to come.  I want it to be as historically accurate as possible which is slowing the process down.

What other books would you compare yours to within your genre?

I don't know as I've avoided any books that may be similar for the moment.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

I've always loved books with historical backgrounds.  I recently finished reading 'Suite Francaise.'  It brings a very important part of our history to life. 
Also Tara Hill itself inspires me.  Kevin's Sacred Well is a special place of peacefulness for me.

What else about your book might pique your readers interest?

At the end of the book, Yseult will have to go to a completely different civilisation to save her family.....

When and how will it be published?

It should be published around the time I win the lotto and loose four stone.  But, joking aside, I will post the final draft to several publishers and if someone is interested, all the better.  If not, at least I've gotten the story out of my head. 

Thanks for reading so far...

And NOW *drumroll* I introduce you to my next three people in the blogging chain.  Two men who are new to blogging and a published author.

Adrian Mc Kenna

Adrian (@Ado_mack on twitter) had a career in hairdressing for 21 years.  He returned to education in 1999 having never completed his leaving cert.  In the ensuing years he studied, counselling, psychology, disability studies and is just finishing a BA in Applied Social Studies.  

Ado has been writing since he became a father 28 years ago, but only started blogging in late 2012.  His blog came to the attention of the Campaign for Children and he was asked to write for their website, on foot of this he was asked to sit on the national committee for the YES Campaign for Children working on the Children's referendum. 

His blog, ( is a mixture of serious pieces on child welfare and personal anecdotes, balanced with poetry for Children and Adults.  

His Next Big Thing will be writing for the Irish Association of Social Care Managers website.  He continues to present honest views on working in the crisis care sector in Ireland.  

Ado maintains a very visible presence on social media and can be found on Facebook, LinkedIn,  Yahoo, Twitter, Instagram and Aboutme.

He is married to Nuala for 27 years and has one son Dave who is 28 and is Trainee Officer in the Navy.

John Hassett

John Hassett is a 42 year old who has totally changed his life.  He spent 14 years in active addiction.  He nearly lost his life on several occasions.  He decided to get sober and clean and has watched his new life unfold since.  He is a French polisher by trade but was unable to continue due to a severe neck injury and surgery.

John's ambition at present is to use his years of both addiction and recovery to help teens.  He is hoping to tell his story in schools to teenagers.  A very good friend encouraged John to join social media.  He started his blog ( ) which is a look at addiction and recovery and will be a take on this rather strange world.  His Next Big Thing is to write a book about his experiences, hopefully to help young people and make them aware of the dangers of addiction.  He can also be found on twitter @TattooedJH. 

John is an avid runner, loves motorbikes and ... tattoos.

Caroline Finnerty

Caroline Finnerty is the author of 'In a Moment' published by Poolbeg Press.  She was also a contributor to the charity anthology 'All I Want for Christmas' in aid of Barnardos.  Previously she was short-listed for the RTE Guide/Penguin Ireland short story competition. She lives in Co. Kildare with her husband, three year-old daughter,one year old boy/girl twins and their dog.  (Where does she get the energy?)  

She is currently editing her second novel 'A Small Hand in Mine' which will be released in Summer 2013.  Caroline has also had articles published in the Daily Mail, Woman's Way Magazine and in various parenting magazines.  

You can find her on or on twitter @cfinnertywriter.  

<I should point out that Caroline was asked to take part in this blogging chain before by Shirley Benton.  Proving the popularity of this idea and I thank her and Adrian and John for allowing me to tag them.>