Cora Harrison

Cora Harrison

Mullaghmore mountain on the Burren, County Clare, Ireland

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Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Thanks for your message, Liyla - what lucky younger sisters you have - that's a serious amount of reading!

Have you tried 'Debutantes'? I think you might like it.

I hope that I will write a third Jane Austen book, but not just yet. I have to do a second 'Debutantes' book - 'Debutantes: In Love' first of all.

Sun Mar 31 10:40:07 2013

 
Liyla writes from Ireland
Ms Harrison,
I've read your Jane Austen series to my younger sisters,
The three of us have ENJOYED them immensely and were wondering if you were thinking of writing more, or similar books?
Sincerely,
Your three biggest fans,
Rosie, Jane and Liyla

Sat Mar 30 23:34:42 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
After Fergus Kelly, there is Daniel Binchy - unfortunately he translated them all into Latin, which wasn't terribly helpful for most people. The book, even if you decide to have a go, is about 500 to buy - unless your university library can be persuaded to purchase it.

Sat Mar 23 18:18:29 2013

 
Una writes from Berkshire
Thanks Cora. My university has them - which is a bonus!

Sat Mar 23 18:13:43 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Una: Professor Fergus Kelly of the School of Celtic Studies has written two very good books (in English) - A GUIDE TO EARLY IRISH LAW & EARLY IRISH FARMING

You can get them from the online bookshop for THE DUBLIN INSTITUTE FOR ADVANCED STUDIES.

There are some other books but I think I would recommend you to start with the first book and see how you get on.

Good luck.

Sat Mar 23 08:41:39 2013

 
Una writes from Berkshire
Hi Cora

I absolutely love your Burren Mysteries, so much so that I would like to do a dissertion on Brehon Law. The problem is I would find it hard to read modern Irish, never mind medieval Irish. Is there some where it is all translated?

Thanks

Una

Sat Mar 23 08:30:33 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
That's wonderful news to have first thing in the morning (over here in Ireland).

I'd say that The Montgomery Murder - first book of the London Murder Mysteries - might be rather too young for your thirteen-year-old. However, it is all about London in the time of Charles Dickens so if he is interested in history he might enjoy that.

And, though I say it myself, it has a very good dog in it.

Thu Mar 21 07:55:53 2013

 
Frances Vincent writes from USA
Dear Cora,
Your books are absolutely wonderful! I am on book 2 of the Burren series and can't wait to get to the ninth book! I was wondering if you write books for teenage boys in the range of 13 yrs. and up. If so, could you write back to me. I was looking at The Montgomery Murder, but I could not tell if it was a series that was old enough for a 13 year old.
Thank you,
Frances

Wed Mar 20 19:42:16 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Thelma: Thanks for the message - I'm just finishing off Mara 10 - it's called 'The Cross of Vengeance' and is about a church in the south-eastern corner of the Burren called Kilnaboy and it is thought that this church, which has an unusual four-armed cross built into the gable, used to house a relic of the true cross. I have imagined a false pilgrim, a disciple of Martin Luther, coming to destroy that cross...

John: The best possible map for you to get before your visit is the one done by Tim Robinson. It's just called 'Map of the Burren' and it's available from Amazon. It's superb and I use it all the time when I am writing - in fact I've worn two of them to shreds!

May is a lovely month for the Burren. Do make sure that you find your way to Mullaghmore Mountain - and you will pass the church of Kilnaboy on your way to there - and as you climb - very easy climb, even I, in my seventies. can manage about half of it - on your way up you will see thousands of tiny dark blue gentians. They are so minute that it is easy to miss them, but once you see the first ones then you just keep on spotting them.

Mon Mar 18 08:51:20 2013

 
John John writes from USA
We are traveling to Ireland in May and are planning on spending a day and evening in the area of the Burren. Our thought was to do some hiking. I was wondering if you had a map of the places that inspired your series of books that takes place there. I was thinking that it would be fascinating to visit them. We have books on the area and I think we can find at least one Dolmen from them that looks like the one in your photos. We would be thrilled with any suggestions. I would also understand if you thought this too much of an imposition given your busy schedule. Thanks

Mon Mar 18 08:40:00 2013

 
Thelma Simpson writes from Australia
Hi Cora, Thank you so much for your series on early Ireland and Brehon Mara. I have only a couple to go and I have read them all (and lovd them all). Please write some more! I find the mix of history, culture and human interest fascinating. Thank you again, Thelma

Mon Mar 18 07:10:51 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I must say that although i enjoyed the two books, I think Hilary Mantel rather skated over the less attractive parts of Thomas Cromwell's personality and actions. I'm not sure that one should falsify history to that extent.

I felt the same about Ford Madox Ford's book 'The Fifth Queen' about Katharine Howard - my agent, Peter Buckman, thinks it's the best historical novel written, but I really can't take such a reversion of what we know of Katharine Howard - I can't see any justification for his portrayal of her.

Wed Feb 27 15:25:45 2013

 
Joe O'Laughlin writes from USA
Yes I read the first 2 books about Cromwell and, I think.. The Giant, O'Brien. If that's how the mind works, for someone guiding the English ship of state - what confidence may we have?

Wed Feb 27 00:35:34 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
have you read Hilary Mantel's books I'm rereading at the moment Bring up the Bodies is my favourite.

Thu Feb 14 18:23:30 2013

 
Joe O'Laughlin writes from USA
I'm glad Mara is living during the rise of the first Cromwell, Thomas, - and won't live to see the destruction wrought by Oliver Cromwell's armies.

Thu Feb 14 18:18:27 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I think that the greatest change in the last five or six years has to be the invention of the Kindle - not sure how I would manage without mine now. As I live in quite a small cottage there is a limit to the amount of bookshelves that I can fit - currently six floor to ceiling ones - so the Kindle is a godsend - and whenever we get some sun here in the west of Ireland I can read with pleasure out on my terrace. I wish they could use the same technology for the screens of laptops.
And, of course, it's marvelous, to have complete editions of Shakespeare, the king James bible, all of Dickens, Trollope and other classics, just lying in the drawer next to my bed - add to that a light for reading if I wake up in the early hours and can't get back to sleep - well the Kindle has to take top prize for inventions.

Mon Feb 11 08:43:55 2013

 
Joe O'Laughlin writes from USA
"..'th times they are a'chain'gn.."

Sat Feb 9 22:10:15 2013

 
Kristine Niland
Cora,

I'll definitely make sure to check the library for that book, thanks for telling me about it, I'll let you know what I think!

I'm from Tuam but I'm in Dublin now, I miss the country sometimes but in general I absolutely love it here!

Thanks for all of your advice over the years :) I completely understand how busy you are, I find it amazing that you can keep up with yourself - I know I'm too much of a procrastinator to be able for it even though I'm a lot younger!

I hope one day when I'm an author that I can run a story club and help younger writers the way that you have! You really did help me to find my voice and style and I can't thank you enough :)

Kristine

Thu Feb 7 09:23:05 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
It's lovely to hear from you, Kristine, and, yes, I do remember you - was it Tuam, or somewhere in that direction?

Yes, I do still do the the Story Club, but only just. I keep thinking of giving it up as it is time-consuming and I am, for an elderly lady, terribly busy. I have had ten books published during the last two years and this year looks like being as busy.

I do, I'm afraid, have a rule that I don't read or criticise anything written by adults - time is one issue and lack of expertise is another. I only have my own taste to go by and that would not be everyone's.

I would recommend, though, if you are serious about writing, that you buy or borrow from the library Carole Blake's 'From Pitch to Publication' - it is excellent and should be read by any aspiring writer.

It's lovely to hear from you and i wish you all the luck in the world.

Thu Feb 7 09:13:16 2013

 
Kristine Niland writes from Ireland
Hi Cora,

I've tried to post this message a couple of times but my compute won't seem to let me...in any case, I'm sorry if the message has been sending and I'm just bombarding your inbox!

You probably don't remember me, I used to post you stories on the story club board...I almost posted on the children's guest book out of habit, but I suppose I've grown out of that a bit!

The last couple of years have been hectic what with the leaving cert and starting college, but now that I'm in second year, I feel like I'm starting to get the hang of time management, and I'm starting to make time for writing again!

I realize you're a very busy woman, but I notice that you still run the story club, and I wonder if you'd be interested in having a quick glance at something that I've written? I totally understand if you haven't got the time, but I always found your advice so inspiring, and after a 2-year-long writer's block, now I feel like I can't stop!

Also, it's been years since I read one of your books, but I picked up 'My Lady Judge' from my college library and can't wait to start it!

I hope you and your family are well,
Kristine Niland.

Wed Feb 6 23:21:49 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
That is a fascinating piece of information, Joe - something that I think I might try with my 'Drumshee' books - Irish historical novels for children.
I think, though I would have to check with my agent, that all of my Mara books are still under contract. They are all (except the latest probably) available on Kindle.
Hope you enjoy 'Chain of Evidence' - my cattle raid book. My agent and editor think it is one of, if not the best.

Mon Feb 4 08:29:00 2013

 
Joe O'Laughlin writes from USA
Hi Cora,
It may be possible to keep your books available through Print On Demand. You have to own the unencumbered rights to a book to do this.
Amazon's CreateSpace has a template and you have to WORK to get your book text into it. However my wife just did it with one of her books by submitting a pdf file.
She was able to set the price of the resulting paperback 30% lower than her original publisher would allow.

Waiting for "Chain" to be available here in the USA.
Regards,
Joe O'Laughlin

Sun Feb 3 22:42:48 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Thanks, Prish, I'm glad that you enjoyed it.

As always I'm eager to know whether you guessed the murderer - though personally when I read a crime story I just rush through it without too much thought!

Thu Jan 24 20:09:47 2013

 
Prish Hawkes writes from England
Another great murder mystery in Chain of Evidence! Mara and her scholars delving into an intriguing mystery,facinating information on Irish Law and wonderfully detailed description of the Burren. i am always sorry to get to the end of a Mara mystery Thank you Cora ..a fantastic read!

Thu Jan 24 12:26:53 2013

 
Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I'm delighted that you like them, Marianne.

Yes, you are right. Tom Lefroy was a relation of people who lived near to the Austens. Some biographers and researchers think that Jane was in love with him, but I don't think that, myself. I think she was only joking when she wrote about him in her letters. I feel that there is much more evidence for Jane being in love with a different man - and I write about that in book 2 of my books.

I would love a film!

And to write a third book about Jane and her love problems!

Wed Jan 16 09:25:17 2013

 
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