Born in Dublin, he was educated at Belvedere College, at UCD and in Bonn, (then) West Germany. He worked in the Irish Civil Service from 1934-48, in Radio Éireann from 1948-57, and as Secretary of the Arts Council/an Chomhairle Ealaíon for 1957-75. He produced criticism, radio plays and documentaries, book reviews and wrote a regular column for The Evening Press. His main novels include the novels The Unfortunate Fursey (1946); The Return of Fursey (1948); Leaves for the Burning (1952); No Trophies Raise (1956); Hermitage (1982); and The Garden of Echoes (USA, 1982). His collection of short stories, A Flutter of Wings, was published in 1974. His plays include Alarm Among the Clerks (1940; USA 1982); and The Lady in the Twilight (USA, 1971). He has also written a local history volume, Forty Foot Gentlemen Only (1963). His novel Leaves for the Burning was awarded the accolade of Best European Novel of the Year in 1952.