Mick Donnellan’s New Novel now Available on Amazon.

You can now read…

Mick Donnellan’s new novel 

The Naked Flame 

Amazon.

Click here:  Buy The Naked Flame Now.

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About The Naked Flame:  

Set in Athlone, the heart of the Irish midlands, The Naked Flame is a story of love, loss, betrayal, and passion. John joe is engaged but doesn’t want to get married. He’s not sure how to break this to Karen. Then it’s time for the stag party in Madrid. There he meets Marilyn. They spend the night together and everything changes. Now the wedding is cancelled, the police want to talk to him about a double murder and the phone is ringing with mysterious requests to come to London. John joe suddenly finds himself in a surreal world, full of unusual characters and extreme danger, with no obvious way out. Met with impossible choices he can only trust the alluring woman that offers all the answers – but at what cost?  

 Mick Donnellan’s fourth novel is rich in comedy, tragedy, hints of the absurd and undertones of a man in existential crisis. The story thunders along with unexpected twists and ominous turns that culminate in a devastating climax. A unique tale, it strikes an emotional note, and is guaranteed to supply an entertaining read. 

About Mick Donnellan 

Recent Awards/ projects: 

Mick Donnellan is the author of three previous novels. El Niño (2012) Fisherman’s Blues (2014) and Mokusatsu (2019). 

The Naked Flame was completed during a retreat at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in late 2021. 

When not writing fiction he works as a successful Playwright and Screenwriter. Film credits include Tiger Raid (2016) adapted from Mick’s Play Radio Luxembourg.  He has recently received the Agility Award through the Arts Council of Ireland and the Mayo Theatre Bursary through Mayo Arts Office.  

His most recent Play Nally was supported by Westmeath Arts Office and aired in May 2021 as a Zoom/Youtube performance. It was attended by over two thousand viewers on the night and many more since.  

You can watch Nally here: https://youtu.be/FiJYuaa5x2Q  

In May 2020 Mick had a monologue (The Crucified Silence) chosen as part of the Scripts Ireland Play festival. After a week of intensive workshops with Playwright Eugene O’Brien, the monologue was directed by Jim Culleton (Fishamble) and performed by Aaron Monaghan.  

Mick is currently part of the Galway Theatre Development Programme run by Andrew Flynn in conjunction with Galway’s Town Hall Theatre. He is also listed on the Irish theatre institute here:  http://irishplayography.com/person.aspx?personid=47564 

Curry chips and fandom.

You can meet another artist and they’ll ask how’s your writing, and you’ll tell them, and they won’t listen, and they’ll say we must go for coffee someday, and they’ll promise to buy your book, and then they’ll fuck off somewhere. And they haven’t a notion of doing the coffee, never mind buy the book. And then you’re having a curry chips and this fella bullocks over, puts his hands on the table, and says: ‘Howya, Micky!’

            He was well drunk, jeans too big, bloodshot eyes, jowls like a St. Bernard. Worse still, I hadn’t a clue who he was, so I said: ‘How’s things?’

            ‘Fuckin mighty.’

            ‘Great to hear it. Are ya still workin away?’

            He wasn’t much of a clues man cos he said: ‘I am. Same fuckin place, sure what can you do?’

            ‘What can ya do?’

            ‘And you? Are ya still writing?’

            ‘I am.’

            ‘I read your last book.’

            ‘Which one?’

            ‘The one in February. Fuck it sure, I read them all.’

            ‘Good man. Did you like the last one?’

            ‘Fuckin cracked. Mighty ridin’ in it.’

            ‘There was a bit alright.’

            ‘But it was a good story too.’

            ‘Thanks.’

            ‘Any Plays comin?’

            ‘I’m workin on a few things.’

            ‘I saw Nally on Youtube.’

            ‘Did ya?’

            ‘I did. Fuckin loved it. Hard to believe ye managed it with that fuckin lockdown but it worked.’

            ‘Thanks.’

            ‘The actors were fuckin mighty. How’s your chips?’

            ‘Lovely. I got them in the van over there.’

            He looked over, suspicious, like he was ready to accuse the van of trying to hide. ‘I wonder will they sell me a burger?’

            ‘Sure ask them.’

            ‘I fuckin will. I’m fulla porther. Drinkin since yesterday morning.’

            ‘What’s the occasion?’

            ‘Sure don’t ya know? Life. What else?’

            ‘True.’

            ‘And c’mere, whatever happened with the film that time?’

            ‘Tiger Raid?’

            ‘Yeah. I went up to see that in Galway. It was fuckin class.’

            ‘It’s still goin. You can buy it or rent it on Google Movies and all that craic.’

            ‘Twas some craic that night. That Gleeson fella can fairly act.’

            ‘He can, nice lad too.’

            ‘I’d say so. Are ya still teaching?’

            ‘An odd time.’

            ‘Dose I’d say?’

            ‘Tis grand.’

            ‘I couldn’t teach now. Fuck that. Gimme a kango and I’m happy, how the fuck do you sit at a computer all day?’

            ‘Different strokes, I suppose…’

            ‘Will ya have a pint?’

            ‘Still off it.’

            ‘Are ya fuck?’

            ‘I fuckin am.’

            ‘How long done now?’

            ’11 years I think. 10 anyway. Kinda losing count these days…’

            ‘Christ almighty, I wouldn’t last two days. You must be loaded. Selling all them books and films and shtuff and not drinkin?’

            ‘Writing’s the easy part, making money off it is more complicated.’

            ‘I fuckin bought them anyway.’

            ‘You did, good man.’  

            He stood looking at the chip van, stars in the night sky behind him. Aroma of cooking oil and vinegar mixed with ketchup. He said: ‘I think I’ll have a burger and five or six more pints and fuck off home.’

            ‘Sounds like a plan.’

            ‘I’ll be sick as a dog tomorrow.’

            ‘I don’t miss that.’

            ‘Christ. Shtop. Keep writing anyway. I want to read the next one. And make more fuckin films.’

            ‘I will.’

            ‘Fuckin do. I’m not into any of that other fancy shite but I like your shtuff.’

            ‘Sound, thanks.’

            ‘G’luck, Micky.’

            ‘Sound. G’luck.’

Catholic Capitalism.

Needed a place to stay after the staff party in Dublin. Nothing fancy, just a cheap Plan B to lay the head in the early hours. The maps said I was there, but it was hard to know. Looked more like a church with the hard stone and the big wooden doors. I got out and some fella pulling a wheelie bin walked over. Had the look of one of the lads carrying the crucifix up the hill. Asked me if I was lost, and I said I was just trying to check in. He looked me up and down, Terminator scan for dodgy types, and said to follow him. Around the corner, through the warm sun and orchard like ambience, Garden of Eden vibe, wheelie bin style. There’s an extra here but I can’t see him. He’s in a vague sleeveless shirt and undistinguished glasses. Maybe he’s part of our parade, or just got caught in the shot, and now we’re stuck with him pulling focus. Your man with the bin asked if I could see the big arch, through the big tree. He was like one of those ageless fellas that walk The Camino in their feet and take part in impossible charity cycles and drinks raspberry tea. Grey stubble, khaki shorts, always tanned somehow. Eventually I could see the arch and he said to go over there and himself and the nobody went off screen.

        Then. There was a squeaky door and a smell like incense at a funeral. Everything was timber and triangular windows and high ceilings. Inside, there was an American with a long beard and a gym bag with walking sticks poking out the side. He was asking a question to the girl at the desk. Something about sights, scenery, guidebook recommendations. He looked like a shady hitchhiker from Highway to Heaven. She was losing patience, but he was in no hurry. Eventually he left and I was next, after the confused Ukrainian and the couple in shorts and fancy runners. She gave me directions at the desk and a list of Saints and holy corridors and a keycard to get inside. I followed the instructions and found a long hall populated with pictures of priests and Vatican style glass. They might have been Popes and Bishops too but it was hard to know. They all had that stern look of disapproval, like they were saying: Who let you in?

         The lift was a clattery affair. Prone to mid journey sulks and alarming delays before opening the door. It was small too, and smelled like an ashtray from a second hand car in 1980. Had the feeling it was installed reluctantly, had a sort of presbyterian nostalgia about it, like they used a confession box to make it and just installed a weak dirty bulb and a few ropes from a church bell and, if it broke, well, that’s your final destination, Ted.

         Managed to find the room. The keycard worked to get in. It was a place for priests, monks, ascetic types looking for Sainthoods or running from themselves. Too afraid to have a wank in case they go to Hell. Or that big crucifix on the wall might come down on top of their head. Maybe this is where some of the lads on the walls outside started off. Denial, Fasting, Prayer, Inner peace and demonic turmoil. The air had the gummy smell of carbolic soap and shoe polish. Fired the suitcase on the bed and there was a loud clunk, like I’d just dropped it on concrete. These days, there isn’t much need for mystics with the calling and the rooms are there to rent and here’s me. Catholic Capitalism at its best. What next, fuck it, better get in to Dublin fast before the Angelus starts, I might never get out.