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My journey as a writer: Luke Eastwood

Writing.ie | Magazine | Tell Your Own Story | Writing & Me
LUKE

Luke Eastwood

My interest in writing stems from childhood, with a passion for reading. I remember that around the age of 12 my English teacher forced the entire class to write a short novel. My own effort was a terrible WWII potboiler and I am glad to say that I remember very little about it. The exercise was not wasted on me though as I realised that even then I could produce a lengthy work of fiction, even if it was best used as a sedative!

I began writing poetry as a teenager but it was not until I went to university in London that I began to write prose. This was in the form of journalism for the university rag – mostly related to music so that I could avail of the free mailing lists from various record companies. To be honest the free EPs and LPs were my primary motivation, however I found that I really enjoyed the opportunity to write about new music and interview performers.

Eventually I branched out into more serious matters of investigative features and financial/computer journalism during my compulsory industrial year. Meanwhile I continued to write poetry for my own amusement, never giving much thought to trying to get it published.
For a long period of time music and graphic design absorbed all of my creative energies – for seven years I pursued a career as a recording artist, juggling this with work as a Graphic Designer, Illustrator and Sub-Editor. It was not until I moved to Ireland in 1999 that I gave serious thought to writing myself.

My final job in London had been as Head of Design & Production for small fiction publisher Citron Press, which was one of the first UK publishers to print novels entirely digitally. From this experience I realised how easy it had become to physically produce a book and I kept the idea of publishing ventures in the back of my mind.

Several years later I produced an illustrated book “Bumbly Bee’s Big Adventure” for my young daughter, initially I made one copy for her but I later reproduced it digitally for friends’ children and more recently I have sold a few via my own website.

Subsequent to that I was involved in the publication of “Where The Hazel Falls” (Electric Publications) acting as Editor, Production Manager and also contributing some poems under the pseudonym “Joseph Dawton”. This was followed by “The Journey”, also penned as Joseph Dawton.
During the middle of the 00s I returned to journalism, writing for several pagan and spiritual magazines, websites and Crann (Ireland’s tree magazine), using my own name as I had always done previously. At this point I realised that it was a bit nonsensical to write articles as myself and books as someone else.

It was not until 2011 that I saw the publication of a book under my own name – “The Druid’s Primer” (Moon Books) was the fruit of my long interest in Celtic culture and Druidry in particular. It took me 2 years to research and write the book, with valuable input from many people in the Irish pagan and spiritual community. I was incredibly lucky in that I was finishing the book just as John Hunt Publishing (in the UK) launched its new imprint and was looking for new authors on Druidry, Wicca, Shamanism etc – talk about being in the right place at the right time.

Following this I decided to revise “The Journey” (a very eclectic book on spirituality, drawing on my interest in theology) that was formerly published in one short run in Ireland only. I felt this title was increasingly relevant given the state of religious conflict in the world, which is a major theme of the book. Fortunately Moon Books also felt that it was worth a revisit and it is now being properly published internationally.

So second time around it is published under my own name, expanded in content but physically half the size, to fit into the pocket. I am extremely lucky to have the opportunity to see it in print again and I hope that it will live up the faith Moon Books have placed in me.

Overall I have been extremely fortunate despite a rather haphazard approach to writing, indeed it is possible to write for decades and still have no exposure and no luck. I realise that luck has played a big part in this journey, however I think that the most important qualities, apart from the ability to write well, are perseverance, ignoring those that discourage you and the tenacity to seize any opportunities that arrive.

About the author

Luke is a horticulturist and part-time writer living in Co. Wexford. He has lived in several countries and travelled extensively, although living in Ireland for well over a decade. he writes for several websites and magazines as well as writing non-fiction and poetry. “The Journey” and “The Druid’s Primer” are both published by Moon Books.

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