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Union pays tribute to journalist turned novelist

The National Union of Journalists has paid tribute to the novelist and former journalist Maeve Binchy who has died aged 72.

Maeve began her career with the Irish Times in the 1960s before going on to achieve literary stardom and was a life member of the NUJ.

General secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: “Maeve was very proud of her NUJ life membership and we were so proud of her continued interest in her union and all its members.

“She will be remembered across the world for her novels, but she will have a special place in the memories of all our members who knew her.

“Fame and success lay lightly on her. She retained a generosity of spirit and a keen and gentle interest in everyone she met that will endure for us all.

“The deepest sympathy of NUJ colleagues go to Maeve’s husband Gordon in his great loss.”

Maeve, who sold 40m copies of her novels over the course of her career, died in Dublin following a short illness.

Her first novel – Light a Penny Candle published in 1982 – was written in her spare time from her day job at the Irish Times.