A year or two ago at the annual Dodge Poetry Common Gathering celebration in Princeton, a teaching colleague of mine asked me if Six Counties Seven Sins, being my first novel, was autobiographical. Six Counties Seven Sins is not autobiographical in any strict sense of the term. Six Counties Seven Sins is a true story that never happened.
Over the years I have heard many stories of, and have also experienced firsthand, various atrocities of the Troubles. While taking said stories into account when fabricating the conflicts found in the novel, I also relied on what I know best: Philosophy, religion, Irish folk music, myth, and poetry.
I am not William Stone nor am I Brian “Pockets” Blaney, whose story is told in my work in progress– Clattering. Blaming himself for the untimely death of his friend and fellow missionary, William Stone, Brian has resolved to kick his multiple addictions. While riding home on the train from Newark to Birmingham Junction in the company of his cousin’s romantic interest, Brian unearths the root of his self-destructive lifestyle.