writer and journalist
John Waters, best known as a newspaper columnist and author, was born in Co Roscommon, in the West of Ireland, where he grew up in the town of Castlerea. His first book, Jiving at the Crossroads (1991), about the cultural underbelly of Irish politics, became a massive bestseller and was reissued by TransWorld in 2012. His most recent published book is Was It For This? Why Ireland Lost the Plot (2012).
His other publications include Race of Angels (1994) a study of the roots of U2’s music in Irish history and culture. He has written two books about the religious and spiritual imagination of modern Ireland (such as it is), entitled Lapsed Agnostic and Beyond Consolation (On How We Became too Clever for God and Our Own Good), He is currently completing a third book in this series for Bloomsbury, provisionally entitled Men Without Chests as well as a second edition of his satirical Feckers series for Constable.
His award-winning plays include Long Black Coat (1994) and Easter Dues (1997). He is also a songwriter and secret musician. He has a daughter, Róisín, and oscillates between Dublin and Lislary, Co Sligo, close to where his father was born in what is nowadays known as Yeats Country.
John Waters Full-Time Journalistic Work History
1984/’85: Wrote about music, politics and social affairs for Hot Press. Also wrote radio column and features for The Sunday Tribune.
1985-’87: Editor of In Dublin, the capital’s entertainment, arts, political and listings magazine.
1988: Editor of Magill, Ireland’s leading current affairs magazine.
1989/’90: Television reporter with RTE arts show, Arts Express.
1990 -2014: Columnist and feature writer with The Irish Times. Weekly column dealing with politics, culture and current affairs.
2014-the Present: Columnist and feature writer with The Independent and the Sunday Independent.
John Waters - Books Published
Presented a three-part 1992 series, Wide Awake in Ireland, for BBC Radio 4, (Special Current Affairs department) on the changing face of Irish culture and politics. The producer was Gwyneth Williams.
Long Black Coat
Long Black Coat, staged by Bickerstaffe of Kilkenny in Summer 1994, won the BBC/Stewart Parker Award for 1994. Text published in 1995 by New Island Books.
A second play, Easter Dues, was staged by Bickerstaffe in 1997.
A radio play commissioned by the BBC, and broadcast on Radio 4 in December 1996, won the 1997 Richard Imison Memorial Award for a first radio play.
Another radio play, Adverse Possession, was broadcast by BBC Radio 3 in December 1998.
In 2000, he was commissioned by Metropolitan Films to write a screenplay for a feature film based on the story of Harry Gleeson, a farm labourer and fiddle player who was hanged in the Ireland of the 1940s for a murder he did not commit.
John Waters has also written and as yet undeveloped feature film script, entitled Dead Men’s Clothes.
John Waters, though as yet unmarried, has a daughter, Roisin, born March 10th 1996, who lives with him in Dalkey, Co Dublin.