Uprising

 

In 1985, my parents, wife and I took a trip to Ireland and England. While in Ireland, we stayed with the relatives in Carrick-on-Suir. The Treacys were wonderful hosts, taking us to all of the sights: including ancient cemeteries, high crosses in open fields, ruined fortresses and the like. When I came home, I began to do research in earnest. I had long wanted to write a story with the theme: "Trust God; mistrust religious institutions, because they flourish by preaching intolerance of other religions."

I saw a fascinating parallel between The Troubles, which had taken thousands of Protestant and Catholic Irish lives, and the eradication of Druids and other "natural" religions once St. Patrick and other converted British Isles souls brought Christianity to Ireland.

I devised a tale that weaved both ancient and modern intolerances into one novel. The "shifting" of an ancient Irish cemetery to prevent traffic deaths results in the unearthing of the bones of four Druid priestesses. They had been buried alive by Christian warriors more than a thousand years ago, but their powers had kept their souls inside their bones. Three (the Morrigan) had gone insane over the centuries. They remembered only that they were to release their clan, which lay sleeping in an underwater cave several miles to the south. The older priestess, Eriu, the "fairy princess" symbol who gave Ireland its Gaelic name, also rises up and steals a body in which to walk the earth. She, however, is sane and realizes that the times are not right to awaken her people. Caught in the middle is an American archeologist, who realizes he has in Eriu the find of the ages; but who constantly places himself in danger trying to help her stop her apprentice priestesses. He also finds himself through mistaken identity avoiding IRA murderers.

The novel is rich with first-hand knowledge of the region and in painstakingly researched history. Because of the constant "skin jumping" of the priestesses, it is basically a paranoid Invasion of The Body Snatchers meets The Lord of the Rings. Amazingly, when all of my research questions were answered by my relatives, everything in this novel (but the supernatural) truly existed. It was as if the story were delivered by an Irish angel whispering from my shoulder. It is my favorite literary "child," and I hope to have it reprinted and also turned into a motion picture. I have not sold it off because this one must be made my way or not at all.

I have written a screenplay version of the The Uprising, still unfilmed. Cable's SyFy wanted to shoehorn it into its made-for-TV format, so we did not go to contract.

 
Celtic Cross