Updated: Oct 19, 2021
by Eamon O'Leary
Please welcome Eamon O'Leary to the Writers Journey Blog this week!
"Did you ever think of trying your hand at writing or acting or anything else?"
Having escaped from a life sentence working in the financial sector, I was asked this question repeatedly by the greenkeeping staff at my golf club who were kept busy fixing the craters I was leaving on the previously unscathed fairways. I knew I'd have to do something other than hacking up the place to keep me busy.
But Writing - Me writing?
First Prerequisite -You must have enjoyed and been good at English in school.
Me -Ooops. I think I've failed on that one. In my tender years, being able to read and write was enough for me. "Who needs all that Shakespeare, Tennison, Wilde crap?" Being the class clown was much more fun. And later, after discovering that girls had something interesting to offer, trying to "land" (without success) Marjorie, Jane, Helen or even Olivia was more exciting than learning about Alliteration, Hyperbole, Metaphors, and, of course, don't forget yer man, Onomatopoeia.
Second Prerequisite -You need to be an avid reader.
Me -Ooops. Another confession. I'm now making up for lost time, but as a kid, comics were my thing followed by material of a more questionable nature, usually read behind the bicycle shed.
Third Prerequisite -You must have a Creative Writing degree.
Me -See above!
And so .....
And so, with great trepidation, I started. Miracles do happen. My first effort submitted using the pseudonym - Gannet was accepted, and wait for it, the publisher paid a decent fee. I was like a peacock, strutting around the place, cheque in hand. (I won't go into the Gannet bit here. That's another story.)
The next few stories all found "homes". I was scratching my noggin trying to figure out what I was doing right. It was simple to answer. "Yep, keep it simple. Don't be trying all that highfalutin stuff."
Can come from anywhere. Once the seed is sown, I'll take off for a long walk/s and let the characters come to life. Not a word will be written til I'm inside all their heads.
I don't write for any particular genre. Mine is an eclectic mix, but no sci-fi. Definitely no sci-fi. It's not intentional, but my stories, even the darkest ones, contain an element of humour.
And for some unknown reason, most have a dog in them. Not any old mutt mind you, but a Bichon Frise!
Forget about it. A veil comes down over friends faces whenever I bring up the subject. Unappreciative gits!
Seriously though, support from the writing community has been fantastic and I've made lots of friends from all over the globe.
Nope! It's not easy. Edit, edit and edit again. Lock away for a min of 12 weeks. Then re-read and edit, edit and edit again.
Eamon O'Leary is a writer, stand-up comic and terrible golfer who lives close to the coast in County Cork, Ireland. It's been on his Bucket List for some time and he recently joined a drama group. (As a first-timer, he hoped for a backstage or minor role. They've given him the lead!)
His short stories have been widely published and the highlight to date was winning the Southport International Short Story Competition in '19.
A collection of humorous memories from a misspent childhood growing up in Ireland in the 50/60's is his work in progress.