Photo copyright: Gerry Sandford

Photo copyright: Gerry Sandford

Joseph O'Connor

Agent:  Conrad Williams

Biography: Joseph O'Connor was born in Dublin in September 1963. He attended UCD from 1981 to 1986, gaining a first class honours B.A. in English and a first class honours M.A. in Anglo-Irish literature.  Thereafter he attended Oxford University for a year. He also holds a Screenwriting M.A. from the Northern School of Film and Television, Leeds University. In 1988 he became a fulltime writer. 

He has published 7 highly acclaimed and award winning novels published in translations worldwide, and five non-fiction books, and has had 10 no. 1 bestsellers in Ireland. His novel STAR OF THE SEA became no.1 bestseller in the UK in February 2004, and went on to sell 900,000 copies in the UK. Film rights are under option to Parallel Films. It was one of the top ten bestselling books in Britain in 2004. He has adapted three of his novels and three of his short stories for the screen. Recent script-writing work includes THE VAMPYRE MAN, a film commission from BBC Northern Ireland about the relationship between the author of Dracula, Bram Stoker and the actor Henry Irving.

Joe's stage adaption of Daphne du Maurier's MY COUSIN RACHEL had a sell-out run in a production at the Dublin Gate Theatre in Easter 2012, and enjoyed a second run in Christmas 2012.His musical HEARTBEAT OF HOME has been on Chinese, Canadian, and German Tour, and will at the Piccadilly Theatre for a run in autumn 2019. His play MY COUSIN RACHEL will be performed in Bath, before embarking on a UK Tour.

Read about Joe's books. 

Scripts and plays in development/production:

  • VAMPYRE MAN (2012. A TV film about Bram Stoker and Henry Irving for BBC Northern Ireland. Producer Paul McGuigan)

  • MY COUSIN RACHEL (2012. Stage adaptation of the novel by Daphne du Maurier, performed at the Gate Theatre, Dublin Spring and Christmas 2012)

  • HEARTBEAT OF HOME (2012. Book for the musical for John McColgan)

  • DEAD AS DOORNAILS (2012. Feature film about Brendan Behan for Graphite Films Irish Film Board, now in pre-production with Fastnet Films)

  • THE SALESMAN (2006. Feature film adaptation of his third novel for Treasure Films)

  • RED ROSES AND PETROL (2003. A film of the play, starring Malcolm McDowell, produced by Tammy Hoff: Joe did not write this script, but it was adapted from the stage play of the same name)

  • DEATH AND NIGHTINGALES (2002. Adapted from the novel by Eamon McCabe for Little Bird)

  • DESPERADOES (2001. Adapted from his novel of the same name for Little Bird)

  • COWBOYS AND INDIANS (1999. Feature script adapted from his novel for Treasure Films, Dublin. Winner: Miramax Best Irish Script Prize)

  • TRUE BELIEVERS (1999. Commissioned and staged by Fishamble at Andrew's Lane Theatre, Dublin, then on tour in Ireland, then at the Tricycle Theatre, London)

  • TRUE BELIEVERS (1997. Feature script from his short story THE HILLS ARE ALIVE commissioned by Hart Sharp Entertainment, New York)

  • THE WEEPING OF ANGELS (1997. Commissioned and staged by the Gate Theatre, Dublin)

  • RED ROSES AND PETROL (1995. Commissioned by Pigsback Theatre, Dublin. Premiere 8 May 1995: Dublin: and 10 July 1995: Tricycle Theatre London: Further run in August 1995 at Tivoli Theatre, Dublin)

"A wonderful debut from one of our most talented writers." -- Evening Press

"Engages and entertains at every level...  You'd be stupid to miss it." -- Irish Independent

"Connor's brilliantly outrageous entertainment has a disquieting power to disturb." Irish Times

"A triumph from start to finish." -- Evening Press

  • THE LONG WAY HOME (1994. Adapted from his own short story: Produced by Treasure Films, Dublin: Director: Paddy Breathnach)

  • AILSA (1994. Feature length adaptation by Joseph O'Connor from his own short story. Produced by Treasure Films / Temple Films, Dublin 1994. Director: Paddy Breathnach. Winner of 300,000 ecu Euscal Media Prize: San Sebastian Film Festival 1994)

  • A STONE OF THE HEART (1992. Treasure Films, Dublin. Director: Paddy Breathnach. Winner of Special Jury Prize, Cork Film Festival 1992)




  • RTE

  • THE SALESMAN (Icelandic Broadcasting: 196-minute adaptation)