I was born in London in 1950 to Irish parents from Co Laois and Co Sligo. The north London of the 1950s was an enchanting, if in retrospect dangerous, playground for children, and I frequently escaped the confines of our house off Holloway Road to play in the bomb-sites in Highgate (I know, I know – my poor mother thought she’d lose me to the social services, but I didn’t know this until I was an adult).
This experience was the germ of my novel The Water Star.
In late 1956 the family settled on a farm near Screen, several kilometres north of Wexford town, but moved a few years later to Hollyfort in north Wexford. This picturesque landscape, featuring Croghan mountain and Annagh Hill, and the Bann River, features in the three novels which make up The Bann River Trilogy.
Apart from three years in Barcelona in the mid-seventies, I’ve lived in Dublin since 1971.
My latest publication is a novel for children (9+). Over a decade ago, my niece Iseult (now an actress), asked me to write her a story. It’s been a long time coming, Iseult, but The Coupla here at last.
In 2014, I founded my literary label eMaker Editions to publish my back list and all my future publications.
Autumn 2015: The Coupla (Children, 9+). Paperback, Kindle. I’m delighted to say that a chapter was published in ABEI Journal – The Journal of Irish Studies in Brazil. Paperback, Kindle.
Tried and Sentenced, Selected Poems. A selection from four previous collections. Paperback, Kindle, ePub.
The Fabulists. A new edition of my award-winning novel first published by The Lilliput Press in 1994. Paperback, Kindle, ePub
The Water Star. A new edition, originally published by Picador. Paperback, Kindle.
The Fisher Child, A new edition, originally published by Picador. Paperback, Kindle.
The Fabulists/Usotsuki.(Japanese). Translated by Noriko Ito. Paperback and Kindle.
Histories of the Irish. non-fiction.
I’m a member of Aosdána, which was established in 1981 to ‘honour those artists whose work has made an outstanding contribution to the arts in Ireland, and to encourage and assist members in devoting their energies fully to their art.’
My other publications include a chapbook, The Planets and Stars Become Friends, (Gorey, The Funge Arts Centre, 1974); and three collections of verse: Those Distant Summers (Dublin, Raven Arts Press, 1980); After Thunder (Raven Arts Press, 1985); and The Year of the Knife Poems 1980-1990, (Raven Arts Press Dublin, 1991).
Among my many interests, I’m the founder and editor of Irish Writers Online, which lists the concise literary biographies of more than 700 Irish writers, and Irish Culture, which has over a thousand descriptive links to sites of Irish cultural interest.
A member of Aosdána, I live adjacent to the Liffey in Dublin, Ireland.
Short Literary bio for editors
Philip Casey’s novels are The Fabulists, The Water Star and The Fisher Child, previously published by Lilliput and Picador and now reissued in new editions by Casey’s independent label eMaker Editions. The Fabulists was translated into Japanese by Noriko Ito and published by eMaker Editions. He has also published Tried and Sentenced, his Selected poems, and a novel for children 9+, The Coupla. He is the founder and editor of Irish Writers Online and Irish Culture.A member of Aosdána, he lives in Dublin. www.emakereditions.com
for an alternative bio, see Philip Casey on The Parlour Review
see also 20 Questions with Kaite O’Reilly