My name is Lisa Halpin, and I'm an as yet unpublished (but ever hopeful) author.
Native of Dublin, Ireland, but throughout the years I've also lived in the USA as well as a (very) brief stint in Manchester, England. I'm a working mother; four days in every week I am a PA/Administration Manager and general go-to girl. Formally trained graphic designer and stained glass artist. Keen interest in music, books, film, and art of all kinds.
It was at school that I discovered I liked writing romance and there that I was encouraged to try taking it up for a living. But bear in mind that that was back in the 80's, and finding a job took precedence over any dreams of being a writer or an artist. And so I went, dutifully into the work-force with a healthy fear of failure, convinced that writing books was something that 'other people did'.
Later, I began writing in secret, around 1997-98, purely for my own enjoyment (it’s still a relative secret - having only just come out of the writing closet to my partner and my family – since then have collectively adopted the moniker of Secret Squirrel for me).
Having always sought a creative outlet through the years, especially since having my son four years ago, it was then that writing became my most accessible pleasure during whatever stolen minutes I could grab.
Inspired by the success of a friend and former colleague, new Irish writer Gillian Duffy (GP Gill), I recently revisited the notion that writing the book I've always wanted could actually be achievable - if for no other reason than to prove to myself that I can do it - and so, managing since May 2012 to get my manuscript "Someone Else, Not Me" completed and onto paper and anywhere near being happy with.
Working mostly late at night (my son is a notoriously bad sleeper), I now have a collection of various tattered notebooks filled with characters and stories, as well as this initial piece finally completed. Work has already begun on the novel number two.
I write contemporary romantic fiction (so, yes, there's some smut and and a good smattering of swearing) with characters and stories based mainly in the USA. It may seem strange that I write American characters, and I suppose it’s borne out of two reasons: a love of movies, and because when I previously tried to write fiction of a romantic nature from an Irish perspective (especially the racier bits) it felt hokey and sounded rather 'diddley-aye-begorrah'. However, I do tend to give my characters a certain amount of ‘Irishness’, and they carry a lot of the sensibilities and humour that are unique to the country and it’s people.
The authors I like to read are the classics - Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, the Brontes – the Queens of chick-lit.
And of the modern stuff - Christopher Brookmyre, Carl Hiaasen, Janet Evanovitch, Caitlin Moran, Tony Parsons and Woody Allen – the funny, clever bastards.
Though, I really must confess, in recent years I haven't had as much time as I'd like to devote to do a lot of reading (especially as I'm usually busy scribbling or losing valuable man hours stalking Simon Le Bon on Twitter).
I hope you enjoy this website.
I write American characters...but I do tend to give my characters a certain amount of ‘Irishness’, and they carry a lot of the sensibilities and humour that are unique to the country and it’s people.
My recommended links:
Also worth a visit:
Sheri Taylor-Emery, Author of the unpublished novel, 'Crazy Quilt'. http://writeonsister.weebly.com/
Great writer and all round lovely lady!
My favourite books...
Persuasion and Mansfield Park - Jane Austen
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
All of Christopher Brookmyre and Terry Pratchett's stuff
Janet Evanovitch's Stephanie Plum series
Is Shane McGowan Still Alive? - Tim Bradford
Cider with Roadies - Stuart Maconie