Writing ‘Here Comes The Bride’

I’d had a scene in my mind for a long time where a young man was trying to tell a girl he loved her. Eventually, I built a play around it and it turned out to be the play’s final scene. I knew that from the start, so I had to work backwards to a point where I could begin the story.
I thought if the girl was coming back to be married to someone else, it would give an extra twist to the story.
I know nothing about cars, except that the engine is under the bonnet. Around the time I was starting the story, a friend of mine, Martin Morris came to visit me one evening and his car was giving him trouble so he asked me to bring him to a local garage. It turned to be a cylinder head gasket problem – whatever that is – but, oddly enough, Blaise Curtin’s car developed exactly the same problem.
The story of the mix-up of the magazines had been going through my head for some time and I wondered if I could bring the two stories together. Fortunately, I found I could and they fitted perfectly.
Winnie Rabbitte is one of my favourite characters. I had used the name previously in little comedy synopses I used to write to amuse a couple of priest friends of mine back in 1990s.
Krystle Reilly was based on a few teenage girls I taught back in the early 1980s in a school in a midlands town, which shall remain nameless. These girls used to come to school in the mornings and compare their love bites.
Eddie Conroy was based loosely on a very good friend of mine, who calls a spade a spade. In fact, the phrase, ‘I’ll put my boot through your arse!” is his.
The incident about the low-flying swallow came about when I was going into a turf shed at home and nearly had my eye taken out by a swallow which was flying out the door. It happened just as I was about to write that part of the play, so I thought it would make an interesting tale for Winnie to relate – only for Winnie it would have to be more spectacular. As it turned out, it became an important plot device in the play.
The name Christy Geary – the Garda Sergeant whom Pearl calls – had an odd history. Back in 1990 I was taking part in a production of ‘Arsenic and Old Lace’ in Mullingar and had been rehearsing with the group for many weeks. It was hard to believe then that a fellow cast member still sent in a report to a local newspaper about the production and somehow named me as CHRISTY GEARY. So, I thought I’d give Christy a mention in one of my plays.
The play was written in 2003 and had its premiere in November of that year in Clifden, Co. Galway. It was performed by the Fal Agus Foscadh Drama Group.
The latest production is by the Glanworth Players at the end of January 2011..

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