Deirdre Purcell: ‘If there’s a fifty-fifty chance I’ll succeed, I’ll risk it’

The author talks to the Róisín Meets podcast about being open to opportunities and taking risks

 

“I have a little pendulum going, that if there’s a fifty-fifty chance that I’ll succeed at something, then I’ll take the risk,” says Irish author Deirdre Purcell.

“If I fail, the pendulum will just swing back again,” she tells Róisín Ingle, on the latest Róisín Meets podcast.

Purcell’s career has taken her from Aer Lingus, to treading the boards at the Abbey Theatre and in the US, to journalism at RTÉ and The Sunday Tribune, before she began writing books.

 

In this podcast, she speaks about taking a risk by leaving the job she loved at Aer Lingus to join the Abbey Theatre Company in 1963. There a chance encounter with an American priest saw her pack her bags for Chicago where, on her first day of work at Loyola University, she met her husband.

She also talks about her time at the Abbey, where bullying and sexual harassment were the norm and accepted as par for the course in those days.

“You didn’t want to offend directors because they wouldn’t cast you, which is what’s going on in cinema and theatre land now.

“It wasn’t just women by the way. I saw men being bullied so badly in the theatre that it ruined their careers. They lost their nerve,” she says.

Purcell was on the podcast to speak about her 15th novel, A Christmas Voyage, published by Hachette, out now.

You can find all our podcasts on www.irishtimes.com/podcasts

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