My first published short story, A World Apart, was written about a woman trying to make sense of her new home in an adopted country and deal with problems she hadn’t faced before. Although it isn’t autobiographical, it reflected my thoughts as I settled into life in rural Ireland a decade ago – and came face to face with the odd cow. I drew on irritations I experienced – being at the end of the pipeline and having to wait for the cattle water troughs in the area to be replenished before I could get a drop of water from my kitchen tap and waging a running battle to keep cows off our newly laid lawn. I had vivid images of these experiences in my mind as I penned the story; it was fun to relive it as I wrote. A World Apart was published in Ireland’s Own magazine as well as a local history anthology, Fermanagh Miscellany, before it became the lead story in my short story collection, Dancing Shadows, Tramping Hooves.
Lead by A World Apart, Dancing Shadows, Tramping Hooves is a collection of half a dozen short stories with Irish connections. Tales of outsiders who discover they belong, a humorous slice of life yarn, heartwarming love stories and a tale of taming fear. The shadows are on the wall, in the heart and clouding a woman’s memories while tangible foes tramp through the physical landscape.
The stories were previously printed individually in a variety of publications, including Ireland’s Own magazine, Dead Ink Books’ website, and several writing anthologies.