McIntyre was born and grew up on the Inishowen peninsula of Co.
Donegal, Ireland. She was
School days feature in a lot in Hazel's early writings and being the only Protestant at Ballyharry primary school gave her much food for thought in later life.
mother was French Canadian and her stories and memories of growing up
in Winnipeg made the family ties with Canada very real. Letters, photographs
and gifts on birthdays kept the family bonds with the Canadian side of
their heritage. Hazel recalls one birthday gift from her Canadian grandmother.
"It was a snowsuit" she remembers. "That winter was a particularly
mild one in Inishowen and I was desperate to wear that suit. So on a November
morning with a sleety shower or two, I donned the snowsuit. The turf fire
in the schoolroom was warmer than usual that day and then the sun came
out. Well, I sweltered for the entire day. But I still loved that blue
Hazel began writing twelve years ago. As she explains, "Inishowen has a long tradition of storytelling. During the growing years storytelling around the turf fires was still the main source of entertainment. It was an art form in its own right. Sad to say, that way of life has all but disappeared and we are much the poorer for its passing."
Hazel Mc Intyre has published four books since 1994, and has just launched a fifth.
of my four books, Lament in the Wind was my greatest challenge.
The famine was without a doubt the biggest tragedy in our history and
as my research went on I became totally engrossed in its scale. I hope
the result is a fitting tribute to their courage."
Hazel McIntyre's first work of fiction, For Love of Mary Kate was chosen by Woman's Way (Ireland's best selling women's magazine) as the most compelling read for inclusion in the '2000 Annual'. The abridged thirty-six page version of the novel was enhanced by beautiful, evocative photography.
Hazel is also a regular contributor to BBC Radio Foyle and Radio Ulster and has entertained radio and TV audiences in Ireland, the USA, and Canada. Hazel also contributes regular articles and short stories for the local press and conducts workshops for mental health groups, students, Women's Institutes and other interest groups both in the Irish Republic and cross border.
For Love Of Mary Kate has been favorably reviewed on BBC's Kaleidoscope.
While in Boston,USA Hazel McIntyre was the guest on The John Clifford Show, (BNN TV), where she talked about her growing years in Donegal and her writings. This programme has since been
repeated by BNN.
Second level students in Ireland have used her writings as a textbook, and she has followed this up by giving talks to the students.