Interview with Orna Ross, Acclaimed Irish Poet and Writer

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The sea-chant of the prayers, breaking in a holy wave across the headstones, down to meet the sound of the sea itself.

I am thrilled she has agreed to an interview.

I am still. Held in place by her. Blood moon. Blue moon. Supermoon. Eclipse passed, she is shining out her heart. For me.

Who has inspired you along the way? Who do you feel are your mentors?

The Irish Trilogy: Writing

Your first book in The Irish Trilogy, After the Rising, is lyrical and powerful and compelling. I couldn’t put it down. Sometimes it was as if I were actually there in a deep and unexpected way — for the dialogue and people and what happened to them become so real. It begins to tell the story of such a division in Ireland, and you center it around three families. But the level of detail, both historical and in the dynamics of the families involved, is so absorbing.

The Irish Trilogy: Genesis

What was the turning point in your life — the moment when you decided to write the trilogy? What inspired the work? And what made you write what you did, carry it on the path it took?

The Irish Trilogy: Characters

Jo is the central protagonist. A suitcase of old documents and photographs her mother left her are the framework for the books, the documents bringing awareness of life as it was during the war, and a modern Jo wrestling with what it had come to mean about her relationships with her family and their role in the wars. She seems to feel the guilt of them all, though she doesn’t want to yield to that. What made you choose that framing?

The Irish Trilogy: Covers

The covers for your Irish Trilogy are full of portent and meaning. Did you work with the designer on them, influence their outcome?

The Irish Trilogy: Timeline

In Book Two, Before the Fall, why did you add in the 1980s as a flashback time for Jo? What generated that?

The Irish Trilogy: Book Three

What motivates you to write the third book In the Hour now, after a long hiatus, and not before? Especially since the first volume was so well received?

The Writing Life

Now, this next question can’t be avoided. It’s the one everyone wants to know about. What is your writing schedule? Margaret Atwood says she writes anywhere and could care less about having a room for it. Stephen King says “The space can be humble … and it really needs only one thing: A door you are willing to shut.” Maya Angelou had to write in a hotel room away from her home.

Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi)

What led you to create ALLi? You left a very different career only a year or two earlier, yet you plunged right into establishing a platform to sustain the relatively new arena of independent publishing.

Living Creatively

What does your writing space look like? Do you have any rituals to get yourself ready to write?

…as of all the places we call sacred, is the silence; you will have heard the voice of your own blood dropping into the deep.

~ Day Out At Glendalough

And finally, one last question: Who is Orna Ross, in fifteen words or less?

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Written by

Storyteller and dreamer. I write about the English language, being human, the magic of life, and metaphysics.

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