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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > May 2017 > THE GLORIOUS HERETIC

THE GLORIOUS HERETIC

Bailey’s Prize winner Lisa McInerney talks creativity, class divides and ‘misfit’ characters with Tina Jackson

Last year, Irish writer Lisa McInerney won the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction with The Glorious Heresies, her debut novel: a savage, multi-voiced, blackly humorous and very dark account of the repercussions of the aftermath of a murder in council-estate Cork. Its follow-up, published on 20 April, is The Blood Miracles. Equally filthy, funny and inventive, the focus, alternately tough and tender, is on a key character from Heresies, teenage drug dealer Ryan, as he is drawn deeper into the world of gangland trafficking.

‘I always knew that the second book would be a tighter, closer portrait after the multi-narrative landscape of the first,’ says Lisa. ‘I had the outline of The Blood Miracles in my head even as The Glorious Heresies was coming together – this story about the violent rebirth of a very young drug dealer – and given that theme, given his age, it felt more appropriate that it was focused on one protagonist.’

Of all the vividly conveyed characters in The Glorious Heresies, Ryan is perhaps the most remarkable: someone with exceptional qualities whose potential to be great is utterly compromised by the lifestyle options afforded him in underclass Cork. ‘He was the heart of The Glorious Heresies, I think, and I didn’t quite feel finished with him. There’s a lot of scope for story in a character who has so much potential and yet who so persistently abuses that potential,’ says Lisa.

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About Writing Magazine

Want to make sure your readers are hooked from the start? In this month's Writing Magazine, learn how to grab your readers' attention and keep it all the way to the end. • Have you completed a first draft? We show you how to polish it to perfection. • Would your life make a good story? We show you how to transform your inspiring ideas into writing material. • Read how our star interview, Lisa McInerney, went from blogger to bestseller. • Find out about the latest writing opportunities and win £51,579 in writing prizes!

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