Orna Ross
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Creative Writing: Behind the books

Posts In This category Are About My Research Process And The People & Places That Inspired The Books

Singular They
Creative Writing: Behind the books

The Singular They

My non-fiction books now carry the following disclaimer: Where we have traditionally been told we should use he and his, this book uses the singular they and their. For me, this usage is more compact, equalising and flexible than the alternative, clumsy he or she constructions. As the OED blog puts it:  People who want to be inclusive, or respectful of other people’s preferences, use singular they. And people who don’t want to be inclusive, or who don’t respect other people’s pronoun choices, use singular they as well. Even people who object to singular they as a grammatical error use it themselves when they’re not looking, a…

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Creative Writing: 1916 Rising & Irish Independence, Behind the books, Wexford

Friday Fiction: Interview About The Irish Trilogy with Regina Joyce Clarke

 I thought you might enjoy this selection from an in-depth interview I’ve just done with author Regina Joyce Clarke. The full article, which also discusses background, influences, poetry, creative advice and self-publishing can be found on Medium.com. The extract below is the part of the interview about the Irish trilogy.  Interview about the Irish Trilogy: Writing Did you plan a trilogy from the start? No. It was all one book but it was too long and had to be split. And then a third and final part of the story presented itself… Did you know what each book was to have in it…

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Creative Writing: Behind the books

Friday Fiction: Work Has Started on In The Hour

I get a lot of emails asking about In The Hour, the final book in my Irish Trilogy. I’m pleased to say that work has started. It’s in the earliest stage and I haven’t put down a delivery date yet. I’ve learned through painful experience not to do that while I’m still only in incubation: the second stage in writing a book. There’s something about this stage, perhaps because it’s the most imaginative stage of the process, that is completely removed from reality. On the hand, we underestimate the amount of work it will take to complete the work, to…

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Creative Publishing: Behind the books, Ireland & Irish Writing, WB Yeats, Maud Gonne, Iseult Gonne

Her Secret Rose Inspires Tattoo

That’s a picture of Lovely Son, above and yes! that is a tattoo of the Secret Rose symbol on his chest. This symbol, inspired by the Western magic tradition, was the work of Althea Gyles, a nineteenth-century Irish artist, illustrator, designer and mage. And friend to the poet, WB Yeats. They were both part of the same esoteric circles in Dublin and London, members of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and the Theosophical Society. Althea’s Art Yeats described Gyles’s art as being ‘full of [the sort of] abundant and passionate life which brought to mind Blake’s cry, “Exuberance is beauty” and Samuel…

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WB Yeats & Maud Gonne: The Greatest Love Story That Never Was?

Out today, in ebook: the first book of my WB Yeats – Maud Gonne trilogy in standalone edition. [The special edition edition is now withdrawn in ebook format but I do still have a few hardbacks editions of this gift-book left]. To buy the e-book in your favorite format, go here      

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Launching Secret Rose in Ireland: Daring To Dream, Daring To Do

In a few hours time, I’ll launch Secret Rose, my special edition two-in-one book tribute to WB Yeats. I’ll write soon about how it went and what I said… (I never know all in advance, so much depends on the group and the energy in the room). What I do know: I’ll be talking about the dream of writing this book, where it came from, what it took to do it… and why (the subject of another post soon). I’ll sign each book with: “It takes a great reader to make a great book. Thank you for reading.” Yeats is easy to read…

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Creative Writing: Behind the books, WB Yeats, Maud Gonne, Iseult Gonne

WB Yeats, Maud Gonne, Iseult Gonne… and me.

Now that the Go Creative! Books are at the editing and formatting phase, I’m back writing fiction again – specifically the books based on the extraordinary triangle at the heart of the  love life of the Irish poet WB Yeats. When I was 13 or 14 I was introduced, as all Irish schoolchildren are, to this poet who towers, literally and figuratively, over Irish writing. The poems we studied at that stage were the early ones,”The Lake Isle Of Inishfree” [see below for copies of all the poems mentioned in this article] and “The Stolen Child”; and “He Wishes For…

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Creative Writing: Behind the books, San Francisco

Only in San Francisco

I’m awake in the middle of the San Francisco night, maybe because my body’s still on London time, maybe because the moon is shining in the window. No matter. As always, I’m over-the-moon delighted to be here.   My relationship with this city began before I ever came here, with TV images and information leaking across the Atlantic from America to Ireland: The peace and love, long hair and free spirits of the hippie movement were a flow of fresh air to a child growing up in the caustic silence of late 1960s rural Ireland. San Francisco’s role as the epicenter…

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