Sunday, May 26, 2013

Bethany Dawson

Beginner’s Pluck.
Interviewed by Sue Leonard.
Published in The Irish Examiner on 26th May

Beginner’s Pluck. Bethany Dawson

Bethany has always written. As a young child she’d invent adventure stories for her two younger sisters.
“After University, I wrote a novel set in Zimbabwe. I spent five months there writing it. It was never published. Then I worked in a cafe for a while, then took my Masters.”

She taught English as a foreign language in Dublin, then married and moved back to Northern Ireland. She planned to take a PGCE in teaching at Cambridge or Queens.
“I was accepted, but decided to write another novel instead.”

Who is Bethany Dawson?

Date of birth: 24th August 1983, in Newtownards.

Education: Girls College in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. University of Ulster, English, then Trinity College Dublin, Master of Philosophy in Creative writing.

Home: Belfast

Family: Married to Sam, a doctor, with a son, Finlay, 14 months. Another baby due in October.

The Day Job: “I work for a Zimbabwean newspaper, by correspondence.”

Interests: “I really enjoy travelling. We lived in South Africa for two years. Sam was working in a hospital there, and I wrote. Then we travelled round Africa having amazing adventures. I loved that. Now I love walking with my son.”

Favourite Writers: Lucy Caldwell, Claire Kilroy, Colm Tóibín,

Second Novel: “I’ve made a start.”

Top Writing Tip: “Don’t give up. If you feel writing is what you should do, just keep at it.”

Web/Twitter: twitter: @storiesbybeth

The Debut: My Father’s House: Liberties Press: €13.99. Kindle: €4.24

A Dublin based journalist, husband and father, Robbie Hanright has life sussed. But when he’s called back to County Down where his father is dying, his troubled childhood resurfaces. His once downtrodden mother is happy with a younger man, but his sisters have their own demons. Can they all resolve past issues?

“I’m drawn to writing from a man’s point of view. I’m fascinated by men, and why they do the things they do. There’s more intrigue, so I enjoy writing them.”

The Verdict: A literary debut filled with intriguing characters. Bethany Dawson is a name to watch.

© Sue Leonard. 2013.

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