Creating Finian Bracken
Irish priest and whiskey man Finian Bracken, a reader favorite, appears in every book in my Sharpe & Donovan series. He entered the priesthood after he lost his wife and two young daughters in a sailing accident. He ends up in a struggling fishing village on the southern Maine coast, befriending FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan.
Finian came together for me as a character one rainy afternoon when I was tucked in an Irish hideaway for a writing retreat. I was writing Saint’s Gate, the first book in the series.
Frustrated and at a standstill, I took a break and walked to a historic cemetery and the ruin of a church dedicated to St. Finian.
Being there…walking that ground…Finian Bracken came to life for me.
In the photo below I’m at the bottom of steep stone stairs that lead from the old cemetery to St. Finian’s Holy Well, at the water’s edge of Kenmare Bay. Art crimes expert Emma Sharpe meets Finian here in Saint’s Gate.
Fortunately my visit didn’t involve a dangerous investigation!