Mayo man gives publishing advice….


Pierre was my new housemate.  Just over from France. Looking for “All the work.’ Closer inspection revealed he’d just left Spain. Had gone travelling with his girlfriend. They had a plan to see the world. Have experiences before they settled down. So they’d gotten jobs in a pub in Ibiza.

All was going well until he came home one night and found herself in bed with their boss.

Pierre paused here for effect.

The problem was I had a deadline due myself but he wasn’t getting the hint. My agent was expecting a new draft the following morning and it wasn’t looking good, even before Pierre decided I was his love doctor.

The story went on.

He left Spain soon after that. Came to Ireland.

Wanted to forget.

Be somewhere else.

Anything that helped.

His first job was in a restaurant. It went well. They had a lot of hours but mostly in the evenings. This meant he’d spend a lot of time during the day sitting around, thinking.

So he decided to get a job during the day too. Doing security in the shopping centre.

This went alright but he was finished at 4pm and didn’t start the restaurant till 8pm so he had four hours with nothing to do. Imagine that?

So he got a couple hours in a shop between 5pm and 7pm. The shop was great because he got to meet “…lots of nice people…”

I was kinda wondering why he wouldn’t feck off and tell his life story to some of them so.

Next thing the door opened and Mike landed. Mike lived here too. He sold bricks and spent a lot of time on the phone. As a Mayo man, he wasn’t quite too sure what to make of Pierre. He’d look at him askance like he was some sort of exotic animal in the zoo.

Pierre, ever oblivious to vibes from others, asked: ‘Hello, Michael, how are you?’

‘Howya, Pierre.’

‘I’m good, I doing all the jobs. So busy, so busy right now.’

‘Oh yeah….French jobs is it? Oysters or something….?’

‘Eh no….this is not true, Michael…I work three shifts all the days….no time to think so this is good for my soul right now…’

Mike looked at me, rolled his eyes, dialled a number and walked out of the room.

Eventually, Pierre said: ‘Ok, I must go now. I need to wash before restaurant. I have not slept for days.’

‘Sound, g’luck.’

He left.

Mike was back in now with: ‘What’s the story with that lad?’

‘Bit odd I think…’

‘What’s he working at? Selling baguettes or something…?’

‘He has a few jobs around?’

‘Who’d hire the likes of him?’

‘He was working in a pub in Spain?’

‘Doin what? Cleaning the jacks?’

‘He had a Fiance over there?’

‘Where’s she now?’

‘Slept with the boss of the place. That’s why he’s here.’

‘Christ above….she’s a lot better off now I’d say…what the fuck are you at?’

‘Writing a book.’

‘Heh? A real one?’


‘What’s it about?’

‘Crime novel.’

‘Is it any good?’

‘I’ll know soon enough….’

‘Never read a book in my life – except for the Roy Keane biography. Did you read that?’


‘He was dead right to leave Sai Pan that time….’


‘Can I read that fuckin thing when you’re finished?’

‘Yeah, when it’s published. No problem.’

‘Much ridin’ in it?’

‘A bit…’

‘That’s what you need. It’ll sell like fuck then. Never mind the rest of the flowery shite.’

‘Thanks, Mike. I’ll keep that in mind…’

‘Do. That’s all people want sure….’




** Buy Mick Donnellan’s Novels here **

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