The kind of novel writing I do is a bit like taking off all my clothes in public. For example, the first draft of the first novel I wrote, For I Have Sinned, was -- rather appropriately -- like a public confession. By the time I'd completed the fourth and final draft I'd modified the thing a fair amount but after it was published I still shied away from asking people what they thought of it. That would, I feared, have been inviting derision from them. Likely put-downs such as “You mean to tell me that when you were sixteen you thought it was sinful to want to go to bed with a girl!” sprang to my fevered mind but never happened because I made sure to keep a very low profile.
I have moved on a fair amount since then and am now a little bit of a veteran, if having written four novels makes one a veteran! But I still cringe a little when I go back and read some of the things I wrote in that first novel. The only saving grace was that I knew my words were describing not only me but the majority of boys and girls that grew up in Catholic Ireland in the Sixties and Seventies. A place and time where murder was a sin but not as sinful as sins of the flesh.
The Wake (And What Jeremiah Did Next)is different. This one is a slow striptease. (I hasten to reassure anyone of nervous disposition that I'm speaking metaphorically here!) No, this novel is different from anything I have done before. Here I am writing about the twenty-seven-year-old Colm Herron, except that I disguised myself as a young Irishman called Jeremiah Coffey who considered himself quite modern but was in fact a right-wing Christian with some very unchristian attitudes. Yep, that was me.
(-from an interview with Howlarium'sJason Howell.)
Colm Herron is the author of four novels and numerous essays and articles. He hails from Derry, Northern Ireland, and his newest novel The Wake was released November of 2015.