Monday, October 10, 2011

Guest Post: Pete McCluskey on Writing

Today I have Pete McCluskey visiting my blog - Pete has just released a new book, My Little Lighthouse, and is donating some of his proceeds to one of my favourite charities, Crumlin Children's Hospital in Dublin. Crumlin was one of two hospitals that cared for my friend Paul's son Conor, whose life was an inspiration to Paul's friends, both online and offline. Hope you enjoy his post and thanks for visiting, Pete! - Ellen

“Ask and you shall receive”.
My wise old mother has many sayings but this is one of her favourites.
I’ve been reading and admiring Ellen’s blog for many a long day now. After polite enquiries, Ellen kindly agreed to accept a guest submission from me for her blog and I’m delighted I asked.

I’ve written three books of contemporary fiction in the last three years and each one, I hope, is simple in style and clear in direction. This is my style. This is the way I write. This is why I am drawn to blogs like Pink Tea and Paper. It’s down my alley, right up my street and bang down the avenue of things I like. Things like Trigger Bars, Talking Heads, cheesecake, Colin Bateman mystery books, trifle – uncomplicated-you-get-what-it-says-on-the tin stuff.

I like reading books and writing books that both I and millions like me can understand without having to memorise a cast of thousands, without having to look up the dictionary for unpronounceable four syllable words (John Banville – I love your books but why so many obtuse and obscure words???), without having to read through pages of the traumatised lives of pauper-like creatures that are barely human, who live in the lashings of rain in Limerick (I tell you no word of a lie – Angela’s Ashes sucked the life out of me!!).

Give me a happy book, a book with sunshine, a book with some humour in it, a book with a happy ending. It doesn’t have to be “Little House on the Prairie” happy – just some smidgeon of happiness. Something to make you smile, something to brighten your day. Something pink, something with caffeine in it, something written on paper that makes you take your mind off the daily routine.

I’m currently publicising my latest book, “My Little Lighthouse”. It’s a self-published book – as are my previous two books. Not everyone is lucky enough to hook up with a publisher or an agent – in Ireland the number is down to about half a dozen of each species. You probably stand more chance of replacing Wayne Rooney on the Manchester United team, or winning the Euromillions or scoring the presenter’s job on the Late Late Show. But it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. It also doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go the self-publishing route. If it was okay for Mark Twain, Rudyard Kipling and Roddy Doyle then - it’s alright by me.

“My Little Lighthouse” is about a man who gets struck by lightening (ouch!) and as a result looses his memory. He runs his software company nearly single-handedly and the company will go down the tubes if he doesn’t regain his memory. Will his wife – the only person he recognises - and his two grown-up kids be able to save him, his company and their family life?
Don’t worry – it’s not doom and gloom. Don’t worry – there aren’t any four syllable words to look up. Don’t worry – it doesn’t rain once after the first chapter! Happy ending??? Now that would be telling now, wouldn’t it. . .?

Anyone who would like to buy a copy from my website will be helping Crumlin Children’s Hospital. All website sales up to the end of this year go directly to the hospital charity. Visit me at

Finally, a thanks to the lady with the pink tea and paper. Continue reading and supporting Ellen’s blog and let’s make the rain stay away a little longer.


  1. Thank you for what you said, Ellen.

    Peter, I think it's fantastic that you're donating to Crumlin. They go great work and deserve the help. I'd like to say I love your outlook, and I'm with you on the kinds of books I want to read.

  2. Hmm; I'm not a pink/fluffy/happy ending kind of gal - though I'm not opposed to the concept :)

    I'll have to check out your site.


  3. ellen...nice to appear on your friends are already envious..thanks for allowing me to guest post...hope my picture doesn't frighten off too many of your regular readers..i think i have what is commonly referred to as "a good face for radio".....cheers - pete mccluskey

  4. good man the bit about all that rain in angela's ashes!!.....didn't realised it rained so much until you mentioned it. had amnesia meself once but think it was more to do with alcohol overload rather than lightening strike..still, i'm more than half way through your book and so far not a cloud in the sky...quite funny in parts too!!

  5. hey that you as a rockstar in the piccie.....saw your note on facebook so checked out ellen's it, like it....

  6. the place...i could easily park my classic merc here and it would not look out of place...favourite bit in your book is the daughter looking for her passport and calmer-downer pills in the airport......onward and upwards, eh!!

  7. i came, i saw ( the lighthouse), i was (slightly) impressed ( lovely pink tea) - which is good for moany ol' me..riveleno lives again

  8. i liked the lightening bit but i don't rememeber him losing his memory. i liked the lightening bit but i don't rememeber him loosing his memory, and best of all - i liked the lightening bit but i don't rememeber him losing his memory. ( howarya pete - see what i did there!!)......michael @ selectseeds

  9. give me a happy story......after the rugby lads got dumped out and the soccer team scraping over the line and the banks still refusing to give me money and my favourite xfactor girl geting knocked out in round one.......arrgghhh.....pete - think your "here comes robert kingdom book" was a real laugh....shirley from foxrock

  10. thanks folks for all the comments and a big thank you to ellen for letting me park my blog tour bus temporarily on her driveway..hope to visit again soon...cheers: pete

  11. Nice to meet you, Pete!

    And for the record.. Angela's Ashes sucked the life out of everyone.

  12. Most welcome, Pete! Nice to have you hear.

    And agreed on Angela's Ashes.


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