I'm directing the Short Story Workshop at Listowel Writers' Week this year. They did a Q&A with me in advance. The first questions went as follows and the rest is here.
Q. Did you know from a young age that you would be a writer?
A. I was writing from a young age but I thought that writers
were hallowed people with some inside knowledge of how to be a writer
and get published and that I didn’t have that. I wanted to be a writer
but didn’t think it was possible for ordinary people like me. My love of
writing grew from my love of reading. I was reading from the age of
three; my parents are book-lovers. Books were more important to me than
anything as a kid. Coming second in a national poetry competition at the
age of nine (with a poem in Irish about Travellers) gave me the
confidence to keep writing. But I was in my late twenties before I
knuckled down and got very serious about it all.