Billy Roche’s first novel, Tumbling Down, was published by Wolfhound Press in 1986 (revised edition by Tassel Publications in 2008). His first stage play, A Handful Of Stars (The John Whiting Award), was staged at The Bush Theatre in 1988. This was followed by Poor Beast In the Rain (George Devine Award) in 1990. Belfry (Time Out Award) completed this trilogy for the Bush Theatre. All three plays, directed by Robin LeFevre, became known as The Wexford Trilogy and were performed in their entirety at The Bush, The Abbey and the Theatre Royal, Wexford. Later The Wexford Trilogy was filmed for the B.B.C., directed by Stuart Burge. His fourth play Amphibians was commissioned by the R.S.C. and performed at the Barbican. This was followed by The Cavalcaders at The Peacock Theatre and The Royal Court.
He wrote the screenplay for Trojan Eddie, which was directed by Gillies MacKinnon and starred Stephen Rea and Richard Harris. Trojan Eddie won the Best Film Award at The San Sebastian Film Festival in 1996. His sixth play On Such As We was performed at the Peacock Theatre in 2001, directed by Wilson Milam and starring Brendan Gleeson. Tales From Rainwater Pond, his collection of short stories was published by Pillar Press in 2006. The stage play Lay Me Down Softly, directed by Wilson Milam, premiered at the Peacock Theatre in 2008.
Also in 2008, Poor Beast in the Rain, starring Joanne Whalley and directed by Wilson Milam, was produced in Los Angeles at the Matrix Theatre by the Salem K Theatre Company. Billy has been Writer-In-Residence at the Bush and Writer -In-Association at Druid and the Abbey Theatre. The Eclipse, a film that was co-written with the film’s director Conor McPherson won IFTA awards for Best Screenplay and Best Film. The film is based on Billy’s short story Table Manners (from the Tales From Rainwater Pond collection). Billy is a member of Aosdana.