Time to check out Mick Donnellan’s new novel – The Naked Flame.

Mick Donnellan’s new novel 

The Naked Flame 

now available on Kindle and as Paperback.  

You can read The Naked Flame on Kindle here: 

The Naked Flame on Kindle

You can buy The Naked Flame on Paperback here: 

The Naked Flame in Paperback 

About The Naked Flame:  

Set in Athlone, the heart of the Irish midlands, The Naked Flame is a story of love, loss, betrayal, and passion. John joe is engaged but doesn’t want to get married. He’s not sure how to break this to Karen. Then it’s time for the stag party in Madrid. There he meets Marilyn. They spend the night together and everything changes. Now the wedding is cancelled, the police want to talk to him about a double murder and the phone is ringing with mysterious requests to come to London. John joe suddenly finds himself in a surreal world, full of unusual characters and extreme danger, with no obvious way out. Met with impossible choices he can only trust the alluring woman that offers all the answers – but at what cost?  

 Mick Donnellan’s fourth novel is rich in comedy, tragedy, hints of the absurd and undertones of a man in existential crisis. The story thunders along with unexpected twists and ominous turns that culminate in a devastating climax. A unique tale, it strikes an emotional note, and is guaranteed to supply an entertaining read. 

About Mick Donnellan 

Recent Awards/ projects: 

Mick Donnellan is the author of three previous novels. El Niño (2012) Fisherman’s Blues (2014) and Mokusatsu (2019). 

The Naked Flame was completed during a retreat at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in late 2021. 

When not writing fiction he works as a successful Playwright and Screenwriter. Film credits include Tiger Raid (2016) adapted from Mick’s Play Radio Luxembourg.  He has recently received the Agility Award through the Arts Council of Ireland and the Mayo Theatre Bursary through Mayo Arts Office.  

His most recent Play Nally was supported by Westmeath Arts Office and aired in May 2021 as a Zoom/Youtube performance. It was attended by over two thousand viewers on the night and many more since.  

You can watch Nally here: https://youtu.be/FiJYuaa5x2Q  

In May 2020 Mick had a monologue (The Crucified Silence) chosen as part of the Scripts Ireland Play festival. After a week of intensive workshops with Playwright Eugene O’Brien, the monologue was directed by Jim Culleton (Fishamble) and performed by Aaron Monaghan.  

Mick is currently part of the Galway Theatre Development Programme run by Andrew Flynn in conjunction with Galway’s Town Hall Theatre. He is also listed on the Irish theatre institute here:  http://irishplayography.com/person.aspx?personid=47564 

About Mick Donnellan:

Mick Donnellan completed the MA in Writing at NUIG in 2004. Since then, he has worked as a novelist, travel writer, teacher and Playwright. He completed his first novel, El Niño, in 2004 and immediately secured a literary agent. He left Ireland soon after and went on to live in Spain, Australia, and Canada. While traveling he worked as a journalist and co-founded the Arts Paper – Urban Pie – in Vancouver. Upon returning to Ireland he went on to work with Druid (2009) and RTE (2010)  and El Niño was published in 2012 with excellent reviews.   

Later, Mick established his own theatre company, Truman Town Theatre. All Truman Town Plays are written, directed, and produced by Mick. The company exploded on to the theatrical circuit in 2011 with their hit Play – Sunday Morning Coming Down. Following a national tour, they went on to produce (and tour) two more hugely successful Plays Shortcut to Hallelujah and Gun Metal Grey. These dramas eventually became known as the “Ballinrobe Trilogy.”  

Moving slightly from rural settings but not themes, the theatre company toured a fourth Play, Velvet Revolution. Set in a stark urban landscape, it created interest in Mick’s work among the film industry. He followed Velvet Revolution with his fifth Play – Radio Luxembourg – and it was immediately optioned by London Film Company Dixon/Baxi/Evans and adapted for the screen.  

While the film was in development, Mick’s second novel – Fisherman’s Blues – was published. As it rose up the ranks, and enjoyed positive reviews, Mick was taken on board as screenwriter on the Radio Luxembourg project. After some months commuting to and from London, the script was complete, and a shoot was organised in the Jordanian desert. Titled Tiger Raid and Starring Brian Gleeson, Damian Molony and Sofia Boutella, it was accepted into the Tribeca film festival (New York) and was also seen at Cannes and Edinburgh. The Irish Premiere was screened at the Galway Film Fleadh. You can read more about Tiger Raid and watch the trailer here:    

 Other exciting projects include the screen adaptation of Shortcut to Hallelujah with Florence Films. The screenplay is titled Sam and is based around the gypsy curse supposedly set on the Mayo Football team as they returned home as All Ireland Champions in 1951. Set in the present day, Sam is drenched in Irish lyricism and modern-day dark humour. The script has been met with keen interest by film producers and actors throughout the industry.  

Mick has lectured part-time in writing at the AIT (Athlone Institute of Technology) in County Westmeath. The course has enjoyed an exponential increase in numbers since its inception in September 2017. April 2019 saw the release of the well-received Tales from the Heart which is a collection of creative work from the students. It was launched at the college by bestselling author and esteemed politician Mary O’Rourke. 

Mick has worked as a writing lecturer at NUI Galway.



Social Media – #29

When writing my first two novels the country was changing so fast that by the time they were ready the material could feel almost obsolete. Your characters go to book a flight in a travel agents but when your story is finished, everyone gets their flights online. People don’t call each other on landlines anymore because they all have mobiles and when they get lost, the reader wonders why they don’t just use Google Maps; except nobody had smartphones when you were writing it.

Smart people at the time were incorporating technology and trends into their writing. Their stories centred around MySpace, Bebo, Nokia 3310s, Digital Cameras and The Walkman. Then along comes Facebook, Smartphones, iPods and iPhones and now everyone’s shaping their works in progress to incorporate the modern trends – as if that’s what’s important.

The other problem is that everyone suddenly thinks they’re a marketing specialist.  Jane’s got 5000 subscribers on her e-mail list. Gathered them up using her Facebook page, setting up a Social Media Company. Waste of time, says John, Instagram’s where it’s at. Use ads and Hashtags and grow your followers. Fuck that, says Paddy, you need Twitter. More professional. You want profession, says Mary, you need LinkedIn, that’s where the real business happens. The rest is all juvenile. I hear Snapchat’s good now, says Tom, lots of influencers using it. You want influencers, says Jerry, you need Youtube, only way to go. Everyone’s making videos and setting up Adsense with Google. Get yourself enough hits and your start making money. Real money. No hard work needed, just watch the dollars grow. Simple really, don’t know why everyone’s not doing it. What about blogging? No way, says Joe, not professional. Too much work. Write every day? Are you mad? Much simpler just to use my phone here to connect with people. Here, let’s take a Selfie. We’ll put that up on Messenger now. Everyone can look at it then, see. Like it if they like it. Exposure’s what it’s all about.  Try get something viral. Especially videos. People making big money at that. Just need to be funny and original. Did you hear they have a course now – on Social Media. How to use it. How to utilise it. Thinking about doing one of them. But what are you going to promote? I don’t know. Stuff. It’s easy. Just share and like. And connect. Big money in it.

Big money in what? You end up with 50,000 social connections and not one customer for your book, or CD, or Film or whatever you’re trying to promote. It’s a crowded space, made worse by ease of access. Every lunatic is doing it and there is no unique selling point. An e-mail blast to 2,000 people is worthless if you’ve never met any of them, or if you don’t bother to respond when they ask you a question. Worse, when you do respond you simply send a link and say: ‘Here, read this it should answer all your questions.’

You’re much better off with a mailing list of 100 people that are interested in your work and whom you can connect with on a meaningful level. That’s your unique selling point. Human interaction. And there’s no point at all if you’ve got nothing to talk about. No book finished, no Poetry written, your film’s been in development for the last five years. Where has all that time gone? Taking Selfies? Sharing links? Retweeting? Connecting? Building your Client Base? Reaching out? Establishing a presence? Vloggng?

 Have you tried writing yet?




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