Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A Journey Into Ireland's Literary Revival - my next book

The Path to Coole Park -- Galway, Ireland
Three of the four Irish writers who have won the Nobel Prize for Literature have walked up this path and these stairs to visit the Coole Mansion belonging to Lady Augusta Gregory. She lived here for the better part of fifty years, hosting such literary greats as George Bernard Shaw, John Millington Synge, and her closest literary friend, William Butler Yeats. The place continues to be an inspiration to writers and artists from around the world, including the poet Seamus Heaney, who won the Nobel for his poetry in 1995.
I profile Coole Park and much more in my next book, A Journey Into Ireland's Literary Revival, due out in February. This book was tremendously fun to write and research. The turn-of-the-century Irish writers who made up the Revival were an interesting and colorful group, full of great stories of encounters with spirits and British gunmen and rioting theater patrons. Ireland, to boot, is a country full of energy and new money flowing in, mixed with truly breathtaking scenery and dramatic natural features. Whether you go for the literary landscape or the pints, it is well worth the trip.