I always wanted to write. As far back as I can remember. When I was 14 my English teacher Miss Hogan, entered us into a Penguin Ireland books competition. I came second. I wrote a rather grim story about a little girl who gets run over by a car.
I went into advertising at 21, and enjoyed a 17 year career, but the desire to write was always there. I quit aged 38, moved home to live with my Mum, took a job as as waitress and started the novel that would become Beautiful Noise. The book got optioned for film by the Irish Director John Moore and The Irish Film Board backed me to write the screenplay.
I had a book deal with a major publishing house, but for various reasons I decided to self-publish. I set up my own publishing company and printed 3500 books. Three people read the book and gave me quotes – Bono, Roddy Doyle and Eoin Colfer. Bono launched the book – we had a BIG party in 37 Dawson Street, attended by over 500 friends and family members – I can honestly say it was one of the most incredible nights of my life.
I feel so fortunate to live in Dublin, which is alive with art and artists. Dublin is rich soil for any creative mind – you will bear fruit – you can’t but bear fruit. Dublin is also one of the leading characters in Beautiful Noise. The book is set in Capel Street. It’s a story about three young adults who set up a Pirate Radio Station in 1985.
The most exciting creative hub in Dublin right now has to be Fighting Words, the Creative Writing Centre set up by Roddy Doyle. It offers Primary and Secondary school children the chance to write novels, short stories, movies, plays, graphic novels – it is just incredible what they are doing.
Now I’m working on the screenplay adaptation of Beautiful Noise and in September I’m going to start my second novel, a story that’s been bouncing around in my head for a while.
– Helen Seymour