Vivienne wrote gothic short stories at college, and a science fiction screenplay. After her degree she trained as an English teacher but moved to LA for a year. Returning, she worked as a project manager in the IT Industry in Dublin but has travelled the world for work.
She always loved to write.
“But when I read the Girl with the Pearl Earring, I decided to be a writer, and not treat it as a hobby. I’ve been writing seriously for fifteen years.”
Her first, historical novel, completed ten years ago attracted initial agent interest.
“I sent my second novel, a contemporary one, to Poolbeg. They liked my writing and asked if I was working on anything else.”
“I was having a tour of Rathfarnham Castle and was told a fabulous story. It wouldn’t go away. Poolbeg liked what I had written and asked for more story development. I started reading about Dublin’s social history before the act of union. It was a thriving city with shops selling luxury goods. I find that period fascinating, and not much has been written about it.”
Who is Vivienne Kearns?
Place of birth: Born in Dublin inner-city, before moving to Tallaght in the sixties.
Education: Old Bawn Community School. University College Dublin, English and Greek and Roman Civilisation.
The Day Job: Admin at UCD in a computer science role.
In Another Life: “I’d own a publishing house. I’d love to be involved in choosing novels.”
Favourite Writers: The Brontë’s; Stephen King; Tracy Chevalier: Maeve Binchy: Jane Austen.
Second Novel: “I’ve almost finished it. It’s set in 17th Century Dublin.”
Top Tip: “Don’t give up. If you drop writing for a couple of years, you can pick it up again. Continue to build your craft and do it your way.”
Website: www.viviennekearns.com Twitter: @vivienne_kearns
The Debut: The Emerald Dress. Poolbeg Press: €15.41. Kindle: €4.39.
When, in 1719, Abigail Harton’s father funds a charity hospital in Dublin, she needs to raise cash. She designs cloth which is made into a ballgown to be worn in Boden Castle. Something happens there, which remains a secret for the next three hundred years.
The Verdict: A colourful historical novel with a mystery element.
Published in The Irish Examiner on 31st August
© Sue J Leonard. 2019