Mike Farragher.

50 shades of honesty - Irish American Mike Farragher informs your inner dialogue with the old sod


Mike Farragher.

Still others explode with pride over his output. You can never predict how people will react.

“One of my cousins papered the entire town of Tuam in Co. Galway with posters about my forthcoming book reading there. She was proud of me and so supportive and this was how she showed it,” Farragher said.

“ She told me, ‘I believe in what you’re doing and saying and no one else is doing that in this family.’ That makes it so worthwhile.”

The first book created some extraordinary conversations with his readers, he admits. 

“One day someone came up to me and said, ‘Hey, I know you! You’re that guy I read in the bathroom!’  I wonder if people ever came up to Yeats with lines like that.”

In lively scenes in the new book Farragher sometimes writes about his struggles with his Irish temper.  I asked him about it and he laughs, “What the f*** do you mean?”  

“It’s in your genetic code to restrain yourself, walk away from a situation and come back later with a level head. That’s for sure. We’re passionate,” Farragher says.

“My wife, who’s Jewish, has a magnet on the refrigerator that reads, ‘Pray for me I married an Irishman.’  But the positive side of that is that you’re passionately engaged with life.”

Farragher has a busy few months ahead promoting his latest collection. On Monday, February 25 and Tuesday the 26th he’ll read at Fiddleheads in Jamesburg, New Jersey alongside musician Seamus Kelleher. 

Then on Tuesday, March 5 he’ll take the stage of the Irish Repertory Theatre in New York in the company of fellow writer Honor Molloy and musician Brendan O’Shea.

“I’m reading at the Irish Repertory Theatre, I did a standup monologue recently that was well received and I am thinking of work shopping a play based on my stories. How fun is it to be me?” he says.

“So the flipside of the Irish temper is creativity, eating up your life with a knife and fork. It’s going to be a fun ride of a book tour.”

The journey from a reflexively conservative fear of rocking the boat to the kind of call it like I see it honesty that blazes on every page of 50 Shades O’ Green has been, in a real sense, the journey of Farragher’s life. The difference is that now he has the sense to embrace it fully and not give a fig what others make of it. 

“Because I was so afraid for so long of what the neighbors think I was driving my life like three wheels of a car,” he explains. “The fourth wheel was my writing and self-expression. 

“When people ask me if I make money writing technically the answer is no, but guess what happened? Since I started to write I’m making three times the money I used to make. My kids are thriving; I’m celebrating the 20th year of my marriage powerfully. I’m more deeply in love with my wife than ever, and it all really began when I stopped caring what the neighbors think. What a great 2013 I have lined up!”

To order a copy of 50 Shades O’Green visit thisisyourbrainonshamrocks.com.


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