Blog by Toby Welch

<< back to article list

Inspirational Story

Looking for a little inspiration when you are questioning whether or not you should stick with writing? Look no further than Donal Ryan's story.

In 2013, Ryan's debut novel, The Spinning Heart, made the longlist of 13 for the world's most important literary prize, the Man Booker Prize. Ryan's book was rejected 47 times before it was finally published by Lilliput Press in Dublin, Ireland. It was plucked out of the slush pile by an intern who fell in love with it and pitched it to the publisher.

The Spinning Heart is a relatively short book set in rural Ireland. It tells a story from several viewpoints of the effect of the economic crash on local people. The book has been highly praised by the critics since it first hit bookstore shelves.

Ryan had the following to say about his book being longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, “It's unbelievable the way the book has connected with so many people. There's not much plot, but people seem to like the characters. It's a very local story but you could say it's universal because this economic crisis and all the austerity is damaging people in small towns not just in Ireland but across Europe.”

Whenever you're contemplating abandoning your writing, remember Ryan's story. And never give up your dream!