Eleanor Hooker

Posted by Sue Leonard on Monday 1st March 2021

Eleanor has been a secret writer all her life. After School she trained as a general nurse in Jervis street, where she met her husband, and became a staff nurse in intensive care. She trained as a midwife at The National Maternity Hospital, Holles Street, but afterwards returned to intensive care.

“In 1987 we moved to the UK, and I worked in Intensive Care units in Taunton and Newcastle upon Tyne.”

Returning in 2002, Eleanor became a helm of the Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat – a role she continues to hold.

“And I’m the press officer.”

She began to write in earnest – and became a successful poet – with a third collection due out this year.

“But when I wrote stories, I received brutal rejections,” she says.

More recently she has some success with short stories and flash fiction, but having a story published in ‘A Page from My Life,’ has been a high point for her.

“I admire the judges so much,” she says, “and that they thought my words had merit has me walking on a cushion of air.”

 

Who is Eleanor Hooker?                      

Place of birth: South Tipperary.

Education: Convent Sisters of Mercy, Tipperary; Open University, Art History and Philosophy of Art. University of Northumbria, MA in Cultural History, thesis in post-modernism; Trinity College Dublin, M Phil in Creative Writing. (Distinction.)

Home: Dromineer.

Family: Husband Peter, sons George and William.

The Day Job: Fulltime Writer.

In Another Life: An astronaut, hurtling through space – where age is irrelevant.

Favourite Writers: John McGahern; Donal Ryan; Anne Tyler; Annie Proulx; Jung Chang; Eleanor Wilner. “And I read Harper Lee’s To Kill a mocking Bird every year.”

Second Novel: “I have a poetry collection and two poetry chapbooks coming out this year – and I’m writing a novel.”

Top Tip: Never give up on your dreams. After rejections, dust yourself down, and get back to writing.

Website: eleanorhooker.com   Twitter: @EleanorHooker_

 

The Debut: A Page from My Life. Harper Collins, Ireland. €16.99. Kindle: €8.51 

These 150 pieces of memoir, sent in by listeners of the Ray Darcy Show, illuminate the beating heart of everyday life.

The Verdict: Eleanor’s memorable story, Alice in Wonderland Syndrome, shows the young Eleanor exploring her skewed sense of reality. It’s lyrical, insightful and heart-warming.

 Published in The Irish Examiner on January 9th.

© Sue J Leonard. 2021

 

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