|I was born in a small white-washed cottage on the outskirts of a town called Naas, in county Kildare, Ireland on the 11th day of August 1968. I was named Eileen Margaret, third child and daughter to Laurence (Larry) Higgins, a soldier in the Irish Military, and his wife Evelyn (Eva) Higgins (maiden name Hurst) from county Offaly.|
My schooling began in a Catholic convent, at the tender age of four. There I was taught by the nuns, some of whom I found to be kindly, but for the most part, they really scared me. One particular incident at school, I recall vividly, happened when I was just five years old. A wasp had landed on my chair in class and not having seen it, I sat down. I shot up out of my seat in tremendous pain and refused to sit back down again. The nun gave me two slaps with a ruler across each hand and put me standing by the wall for my disobedience. I didn’t mind standing, for obvious reasons, and although my hands throbbed, the pain was nothing compared to the wasp sting! I had simply been too scared of the nun to explain what had happened. As my time went on at the convent, it never got any easier.
I loved to read, it was my favourite past time. I would search out quiet secluded spots along the bank of the canal that ran along, and only a few yards from, the front of our house. There I would sit and read for hours. Home life was a far cry from the convent. My mother was never the kind to raise her voice to us and there was never any cruelness, unlike what I experienced at the convent. My dad introduced us to the world of fishing, hunting and camping. He also played the guitar and sang to us. There were many occasions when my dad would sit us down around him, and playing the guitar, he would encourage us all to sing. And of course not forgetting Tom Higgins, my granddad, who always had sweets in his pocket! He was well known and liked locally. He was very much a gentle soul. My grandmother, Eileen Higgins, had many a story to tell, and she told them so well. These are the times I recall with great fondness, and what made me so eager to write. I grew up, and had children of my own, to whom I enjoyed reading very much. They were enthusiastic listeners, and I began to tell them stories, I myself, had thought up. They loved every one. To me as a writer, it gives me enormous satisfaction, knowing that I have been able to capture the imagination of the reader. That is my ultimate goal as a writer. So I say to you, pick up a book, and allow yourself to be taken on a great and wondrous journey
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