The Glass Wall – A Collection of Poetry and Short Stories – by Barry O’Shea


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“The birth of this book traces back to a car accident I was involved in on April 18, 2008. For reasons I couldn’t explain, soon after my recovery I felt that something significant was missing from my life. Prior to this a friend was sending out daily quotations to a large group of people, which obviously were having a positive effect on those they reached. Although she and I have since parted ways, I realized this was a good place to start; the answer to filling the void I felt lay in taking the focus off myself and trying to make a difference to others.

And so my journey began. Each day I chose a quotation I felt would resonate amongst a wide range of readers, and by the end of the first month the email list had spread t over two hundred and fifty people in Canada, the USA, United Kingdom, Australia and Trinidad. It was clear I had to find a more efficient way to reach a greater number of people and in March of 2009, my new blog “Life in Quotations” was born.

In the beginning I was content to post daily quotations, but as the months passed I became more comfortable revealing myself through my own writing, which I had returned to after a long hiatus. As I did this my readers started responding and on-line friendships developed. People began opening up to me about their personal struggles with depression, self-image, eating disorders, rape and abuse, attempted suicide, self-harm, drug and alcohol dependency, bi-polarity, anxiety and other issues. Heavy subjects to be certain, but the process has made me acutely aware of the healing power of conversation. These exchanges have proven to be what I needed to regain a sense of direction in my life, and today the thought of pursuant a career as a counselor or therapist often crosses my mind.

Over the past year it’s been increasingly suggested I write a book to share my personal experiences. So here we are. The desire to express myself has come most often when stirred emotionally by something or someone; my words therefore pertain mostly to matters of the heart. And while my writing runs heavily along this theme, it is the truest representation of who I am beneath my skin. Beyond my glass wall.”

Barry O’Shea


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