Thursday, 31 July 2008

Chapters and Verse

Some new poets being promoted by Chapters and Verse (including one well known blogger):


6.30pm Thursday 14th August 2008

Chapters of Parnell St, Dublin 1

Celeste Augé is the author of two chapbooks of poetry: Tornadoes for the Weathergirl (with the support of Galway County Council) in 2006, and Smoke and Skin (joint collection with Aoife Casby), which was published by Lapwing in Belfast, 2008. Her first full-length collection of poetry will be published by Salmon Poetry in early 2009.

Aoife Casby is originally from Mayo and now lives in Carraroe, Co. Galway where she works as a writer and visual artist. She has published in Poetry Ireland, Cyphers, Orbis, West47, Ropes, The Cork Literary Review, The Cúirt Annual, DIVAS 2 Anthology and others. A selection of her poetry was published (with writer Celeste Augé) by Lapwing in a chapbook Smoke & Skin in 2008.

Catherine Ann Cullen was born in Drogheda, Co Louth. She is a regular contributor to RTE Radio 1's Sunday Miscellany and A Living Word as well as producing current affairs, arts and features. She lives with her partner Harry and daughter Stella in Kimmage, Dublin. Her first collection, A Bone in My Throat, is published by Doghouse.

Ross Hattaway was born in Wellington New Zealand, but has lived in Ireland since 1990. He has had many varied jobs and currently works as a civil servant. His first collection of poetry, The Gentle Art of Rotting was published by Seven Towers in 2006.

Noel Ó Briain was born in Tralee in Kerry, grew up in Dublin and now resides in Camolin, Co Wexford. He has worked as an actor, director, producer and designer and was head of drama in RTE for a period up to 1988. His first collection of poetry Scattering Day, 21 Sonnets and Other Poems was published by Seven Towers in 2007.

Barbara Smith is finishing an MA in Creative Writing at Queen's University Belfast. Her debut collection of poetry, Kairos, is just published by Doghouse Books. She has poetry and essays published widely and lives in Dundalk, with her partner and six children. Other publications include Poetic Stage (1998).

And again:

Wednesday 20 August 1.15 Chapters Bookstore, Parnell St, Dublin 1

With Ross Hattaway and Barbara Smith

Sorry, Barabara, I'll miss both, I'll be galivanting on the continent.

Wednesday, 30 July 2008


Ooo this is lovely. Go play with Wordle. Don't you just love words? Luscious. ubiquitous, ransack, awkward, snipe, wormcast, a capella. I could go on. Flabbergasted, myopic, onomatopoeia, hippopotamus, squelch.

And here's something else. If you put in a story, the main words stand out and you can sometimes see what the theme is. Fabulous. Thanks Barbara.

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Dromineer Literary Festival

The Fifth Annual Dromineer Literary Festival.
Friday 3rd to Sunday 5th October.
The winners of the poetry and short story competitions will be announced and works read to the audience at the festival launch on Friday 3rd October.
Competition rules and entry details are available here.

Poetry Competition
Judge: Tony Curtis - the Irish one
Tony will also host a poetry writing workshop for adults on Saturday 4th October at Lough Derg Yacht Club.

Shirt Story Competition
Judge: John Maher.
John will also host a short story writing workshop for adults on Saturday 4th October.

The meet the author session on Saturday night, 4th October will feature James Ryan and Brendan Lynch.

Teenager workshop. Students from from local secondary schools will take part in a workshop with Ré O’Laighleis, whose works are on both the junior & leaving certificate syllabus. Ré will read from his work, while also conducting a workshop on the structure and elements of contemporary writing.

Children's poetry Competition:
Judge: Mary Arrigan
Mary will hold writing and reading workshops on Saturday 4th October.

Our unique Sunday experience is a must when visiting Dromineer. You can’t visit Lough Derg without going afloat. On Sunday afternoon, October 5th on board the passenger vessel The Spirit of Killaloe, an audience will get the opportunity to listen to memoirs read by Diarmuid Brethnach, featuring Hugo Hamilton’s The Speckled People.

To close the festival the committee has invited the Nenagh Players to perform Scotts Letters on Sunday 5th October.

Monday, 28 July 2008

More blogs

More blogs worth a browse:

Eimear writes at 12 stories, 12 months. She has a story in the July Sunday Tribune.

David Halpert writes about A Writers Life in Toronto.

The Anti-Room blogs about living the life in Dublin.

Cherryl Floyd-Miller is a US poet.

Dreaming Arm comments on the world from his blog.

Elizabeth Baines writes fiction.

Faoiseamh blogs Irish tales from tulipland.

Vanessa has lovely drawings at A Fanciful Twist.

The poet Ailbhe Darcy blogs at glumphoboo (why the name?)

Liz Shine: Writer in the US. has articles on movies including some freebies.

Liz blogs about poetry and life in Spain on Musings.

New Pages reviews literary magazines in the US and has a good blog.

On a Small Island blogs on writing and living on a small island on the edge of Europe.

Pete's Seriouser Poems and check out his many other blogs too.

Positive Boredom does a little bit of ranting here.

Rana Dasgupta who is judging this year's Willesden Herald short story competition.

She is Too Fond of Books blogs about reading and has some book reviews.

Rosie posts about Dublin in Spanish Exposition.

Steven Waling discusses any things related to poetry.

Three Beautiful Things records 3 beautiful, inspiring things every post.

Welcome to Talksville - population one where Fionnula blogs from Surrey.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Where the Hell is Matt?

An amazing video, guaranteed to make you smile and ignite your wanderlust. Thanks to the Willesden Herald for finding it.

And if you search on YouTube you can see some other earlier ones as well as outtakes. See what happens at the Parthenon.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Talks at the National Library

The National Library, Kildare Street, Dublin 2, in co-operation with Ireland Literature Exchange will host a small showcase of Irish literature in translation during July and August. The exhibition will display a small selection of Irish classics, contemporary fiction and children’s literature, donated by ILE over the years, in the room adjoining the entrance lobby.

They also have a series of author-translator events to coincide with the display:

Wednesday, 6 August, 7.00p.m.
Translating John Mc Gahern.
Declan Kiberd in conversation with Gerardo Gambolini (Spanish language translator of Kiberd’s Inventing Ireland and John Mc Gahern’s Collected Stories).

Wednesday, 13 August,7.00p.m.
Walking the Blue Fields in Slovenia with Claire Keegan and Maja Novak. Slovene translator Maja Novak talks about her recent translation of Claire Keegan’s latest collection of short stories, Walk the Blue Fields, followed by a reading by Claire Keegan.

Wednesday, 27 August, 7.00p.m.
Shamrock Tea, A Polish Brew. Ciaran Carson in conversation with the Polish translator of Shamrock Tea, Maciej Świerkocki, and the publisher, Piotr Mielcarek, with music by Deirdre and Ciaran Carson.

Friday, 25 July 2008

Moloch Showcase night

Moloch is an online journal of new art and writing. I'm never too sure of the benefit of online journals. Is there any editorial process at all? Who reads them? There's never any money involved but is there any other benefit?

Anyway, they're hosting a showcase night in Dublin on Thursday 31st July in the Winding Stair on Ormonde Quay starting at 19:00; admission free.

They have a blog.

We're going to show off just a few of our lovely talented crew, including Kevin Higgins, Alan Jude Moore, Stephen Kelly and The Perfect Consonants. Moloch was founded in December 2006 by Ailbhe Darcy and Clodagh Moynan. Tying different art forms together in new and refreshing ways, Moloch aspires to allow
artists and writers to find inspiration in each other and, in doing so, add new dimensions to each others work.
For the showcase night, Kevin Higgins will be joining us from Galway. We'll also have poetry read by Dubliner Alan Jude Moore and Poet and songwriter Stephen Kelly. Plus there'll be music from The Perfect Consonants, sometimes known as the Darran-Mark-and-Aoife Quartet.

I tell you what though, I admire this group for getting their act together, getting out there and doing there thing in public. Instead of sitting at home and whining about it (like me.)

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Inkwell writers course

Check out the price for this one. Are they kidding? 550 Euro for a residential weekend. I expect it's very good, I've the organisers and I said at the time that I thought the prices were very high. But this is, in my humble opinion, verging on the exploitative. And the teachers aren't exactly household names.
As suggested in an earlier comment, you may do better spending your dosh on a good critique service.

Write a bestseller. Inkwell Pure Fiction Writers Weekend 19th-21st September 2008 at Kippure Estate, Blessington, Co. Wicklow.

Facilitated by best selling author, playwright, screenwriter and TV director/producer Ferdia MacAnna and Tracy Culleton best selling author and winner of the RTE/Poolbeg ‘Write a Best Seller’ competition, areas covered will include developing character, writing sparkling dialogue, and plotting your book, plus insider tips on getting published.

Are you working on a book at the moment? Ferdia or Tracy are available to critique the opening chapter (first 2000-3000 words) of your novel and discuss it with you over the weekend. Manuscripts must be received by 1st August to allow time for the respective author to critique it before the workshop.

Set in a 240 acre private estate in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains, Kippure Estate is the perfect location to get away from it all and focus on your fiction.

Full board, single accommodation €550.

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

You've finished your book, now what?

I had a question from an emerging writer who has finished his book. What now?

For a newly finished book, I suggest
1. Put it away for a month or however long it takes you to disconnect. Don't read it, don't touch it. Forget it.
2. Read it all the way through
3. Fix it.
4. Polish up the first 3 chapters and synopsis until they shine like diamonds, really, really shiny diamonds.
5. Go to the (most up to date) Writers and Artists Yearbook, pick 3 agents who represent writers you aspire to emulate and send it out.
6. Forget it.
7. Start the next book so you can talk enthusiastically about it when your agent calls.

Step 5 needs a bit more discussion at a later date, I feel.

Any comments?

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Succour submissions

A new one for me.

Deadline: 20 August 2008

Succour publishes in the UK and Ireland's new fiction, poetry and art. Editors in London, Manchester, Brighton, Exeter and Dublin are committed to seeking out and publishing the very best new writing - original and ambitious not clichéd or self-indulgent

The theme for the Autumn/Winter 2008/2009 issue will be Icons. Potential contributors are invited to respond to the title in as wilful or oblique a manner as they desire.

Please send your work in Word or Rich Text format documents, with a limit of 3,500 words (fiction) or 250 lines (poetry), to new Dublin editor Christodoulos Makris at

Again, they recommend you read a copy first. In Dublin, Succour is available from Books Upstairs, The Winding Stair and the IFI Bookshop or online.

And is you want to see what type of writing made it into the Stinging Fly:

There'll be a reading from the summer issue of The Stinging Fly on Thursday July 24th in the Winding Stair Bookshop, Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1 (across from the Ha'penny Bridge).

Grace Wells, the featured poet in the summer issue, will read alongside fiction writers Jennifer Brady and Orlaith O'Sullivan and poets Richard W. Halperin and Paul Perry.

The reading is at 7 p.m — all are welcome!

Monday, 21 July 2008

Faber Academy

More of the theme of expensive creative writing courses.
Faber are running their own using big hitter names. They're starting in Paris.

Thursday 9 October to Sunday 12 October 2008 at Shakespeare and Company, 37 Rue de la Bûcherie. (Have you ever been there? Iconic bookshop. I have a photo at an earlier post.

R.E.S.P.E.C.T or How to Tell a Story Without Telling Your Readers What to Think.
Given by Tobias Hill and Jeanette Winterson, both experienced creative writing teachers as well as well regarded writers.

Set over four days in the charming upstairs library of the legendary Left Bank Paris bookshop, Shakespeare and Company, Tobias Hill gives the inaugural Faber Academy course, an in-depth workshop for those beginning or in the process of writing a novel. In addition, the course will contain a unique two-part seminar on the importance of authenticity and voice in fiction by multi prize-winning novelist, Jeanette Winterson. It includes lunch.

Course cost: £500 / €630 (price inclusive of VAT)

More are planned to follow in other cities such as London, Edinburgh and Dublin.

Still very expensive though.

By the way, Faber, if you're reading this, Clare Wigfall who won this year's BBC National Short Story Award for her story 'The Numbers' but her collection is called 'The Loudest Sound and Nothing' not 'Walk the Blue Fields' which is Claire Keegan. Claire won the Edge Hill Short Story collection. Congratulations.

The faber & faber website is well worth a browse by the way. And Youtube films. Faber are using the internet quite imaginatively.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Diving Deeper Inchigeelagh

Ever been to Inchigeelagh? It's lovely.
Sandra wrote to me to pass on the word about a workshop she's running there to unblock the blockages.

Whether you have ‘writer’s block’, are in the writing flow, are a complete beginner or simply looking to explore your creativity, the sustained focus of this workshop will inspire you to give expression to your authentic voice and to deepen your connection to yourself.

• Workshop Cost: 175 euros (includes lunch Sat & Sun, snacks and tea etc.)
• Date: Friday, August 22, 7:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. Sat. 23 & Sun. 24:
• Place: Tir na Spideoga, Inchigeelagh (near Macroom) Co. Cork

Places limited to 12.
Accommodation is not included - a variety of B&Bs and hotels are available nearby.
For more information or to register:

Rosemary Taylor
E-mail: Telephone: 026 47210 / mobile: 087 2371817

Dr Horrible - ends today (US time)

Check out this Joss Whedon sing-along blog, Dr Horrible, only available for a few more hours. But brilliant. Funny, a bit soppy.
"Oh goodness, look at my wrist. Got to go."

Saturday, 19 July 2008

James Barrett And The Doll In The Corner

This sounds interesting. This project is looking for writing for inclusion in a limited edition Artist Book entitled, "James Barrett And The Doll In The Corner".
The book is being produced as part of an Art's Council funded project that will culminate in a multimedia exhibition in the Europa Hotel in Belfast in 2008. The project was started during the Heinrich Boll Writer's and Artist residency in Achill Island, County Mayo in January 2007.

All successful submissions will be bound into an illustrated limited edition artist book; all contributors will receive a copy of the book.

Kathy says:

It will be a mix of art work, poetry, prose and short stories-all based on or inspired by the title/imagery of James Barrett and The Doll In The Corner) I'm interested in the concept of using imagery or the interplay between images as a catalyst for an imagined story or situation.

Out of many pieces I've received via Belfast and Dublin writer's networks, I have chosen around 6 so far and am looking for another 4. A couple of short stories would be good.

She's looking for submissions asap. It's a good idea to write outside you usual parameters from time to time so why not give it a lash?

Friday, 18 July 2008

More Readings at the National Gallery in Dublin

Poetry Ireland are organising lucnhtime readings at the National Gallery. See here for more information on the readings and the poets including listening to the poets read their own work. I like it when multimedia adds to the blogging/surfing experience.

Gerard Smyth- 23 July
Harry Clifton - 30 July

The readings will be held from 1pm in the Portrait Gallery, Room 21, National Gallery of Ireland, Merrion Sq, Dublin 2.

There is a wonderful sounding Impressionists exhibition on in the National Gallery now until August 10th - 46 wonderful paintings and drawings by Manet, Monet, Renoir, Degas, Cassatt, Gauguin and more. If the National Gallery would like to give me tickets, I'd be delighted to accept...10 Euro full price.

They also do workshops for children and for adults, mostly art and appreciation but I'll be teaching a lunchtime writing workshop in September so do come along.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Residency at the Friary in Multyfarnham

I'm not sure what degree of engagement the friars are thinking of but this sounds intersting if your August is not booked.

The Franciscan Friary in Multyfarnham, Westmeath is running a second Residency Programme of a fortnight’s duration, due to begin on Monday 18 August 2008. The Friars are offering free accommodation and studio space to artists, writers, performers, ecologists, etc, who are willing to engage with the Franciscan community and discuss ideas and plans for their development of a 'Caring For Creation’ centre. The Friary is set on over 60 acres of land and has a building, once an agricultural college, containing several spacious well-lit rooms and a small theatre which may be used by successful applicant(s) for the period of residency.

This invitation is not limited to individuals from any one gender or belief system...the Friars welcome expressions of interest from all who feel that they would care to participate. Further information:

Fr Joe Walsh
T: 044 9371641
or Paul Timoney

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Literature and Arts events in Achill

Achill is where the Heinrich Boll cottage is and they are organising some interesting sounding events if you're in that neck of the woods.

Thursday evening July 17th
A reading of poetry by Dublin Poet Gerard Smyth at the Cyril Gray Memorial Hall Dugort at 8.30pm.

Wednesday evening July 23th
Claire Keegan will give a reading from her work at the Cyril Gray Memorial Hall in Dugort at 8.30pm.

Saturday July 26th
8.00pm No Crows at St. Thomas’s church Dugort, an eclectic gathering of musicians from different cultures and influences. Steve Wickham, Anna Houston, Eddie Lee and Felip Carbonell met up initially for an informal weekly session in Shoot the Crows pub in Sligo .

Ticket required booking essential at Mayo County Council 094 90 24444. exts; 7558 and 7560.

Monday evening July 28th
Scoil Acla officially opening is by poet John F Deane in Gielty’s Dooagh.

Tuesday July 29th;
A talk on fiddle making by Graham Wright at Gielty's Dooagh 3.00 pm.
Seisúin at Ted Lavelle’s, Cashel 6.00 - 8.00 pm .
“Dúch agus Dúchas” – teacht le chéile de chlann na Gaeilge do sheoladh “Oidhreacht Acla”, bailiúchán scriobhnóireachta Phádraic Seoighthe (1920-1987). Oiche drámaiochta, filiochta agus ceoil le haionna speisialta óna ceithre Cúigi. le Nóra Seoighe. Ionad : Óstán Oileáin Acla 8.30 pm.

Wedsneday 30th July ;- Traditional Music Recital in St.Thomas’s Church, Dugort 8.30 pm. Ticket only from local outlets

Thursday 31st July;
Hata Acla Competition for young musicians. In Ted Lavelles, Cashel. 6.30pm .
Poetry Reading with Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin and Macdara Woods. In St.Thomas's Church, Dugort 8.30pm.

Friday 1st August;
Reading from Creative Writing workshop with Macdara Woods in TedLavelles Cashel 8.30pm.
Gala Concert featuring top traditional musicians in the Wavecrest Hotel, Dooagh. 9.00pm

Saturday August 2nd.
Aeraíocht at The Pub Car Park Dooagh 3.00pm. Students will perform class material on stage with their tutors. Featuring the Dooagh Pipe Band.

Monday July 28th until Friday August 1st.
Poet Macdara Woods will host a writing workshop commencing Further details at

Thursday evening July 31st
Scoil Acla presents a reading of poetry by Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin and Macdara Woods at St Thomas’s Church Dugort. 8.30pm Admission € 10 – advance ticket sales from and Achill Tourism 098 47353.

On Friday evening August 15th 2008, a recital of music by The Mitre Court Ensemble from London at St Thomas’s Church.
Ignaz Pleyel (1757 – 1831) Quintet Op. 18 no 1.W.A. Mozart Oboe Quartet F Major K37 Schubert String Trio Movement in Bflat.
Mozart Flute Quartet C Major K171.
J.C. Bach Quintet Op 11 no.6.
Advance ticket sales only available mid July from local outlets.
Admission €20 with all proceeds to benefit two local charities, The Achill Sheltered Housing programme, and The Lower Achill Community Hall development in Keel.

Further 087 7720192

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Poems on the web

Here's a great selection of poems that have shown on London Transport. I wonder will Boris have anything to say about public art now he's in power.

And Carol Rumens' weekly Guardian Poem of the Week analyses can be seen here.

Monday, 14 July 2008

Eileen Casey and Enda Coyle-Greene

Two lovely ladies and you can get to hear them read. Get thee to Offaly.

Wednesday 16 July @ 6.30 pm
Poetry Ireland in association with the Phoenix Festival poetry night present Eileen Casey and Enda Coyle-Greene.

Admission: ¤8/5

The Millenium Room, The Bridge House, Tullamore, Co Offaly

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Oxegen 2008

I dropped my son off to go for his traditional Irish teenage right of passage stay at Oxegen. He was telling me all the great bands that were on and they sounded so enticing, myself and himself went home and booked a last minute day ticket for the Saturday. Yes, I know. Us and a load of young, fun loving, music loving, loving loving people. I didn't tell my son (the shame of it, your own parents hanging out in wellies at Oxegen) But it was great. See the piccies from my new phone. I'm still getting the hang of it.

And by the way, what's happened to festival? It wasn't like this in my day.

No queues to get in.
No queue for the loo. We had to queue at Bruce Springsteen.
The portaloos were OK. I did bring my own tissues and hand cleanser.
No queues for food.
And the food selection was great. Not just burgers or chips or burger and chips. Food for all tastes. We had yummy noodles.
No queue for the bus and on time and all that. Park and ride so it didn't take 3 hours to get out of the car park. 2 minutes is all
No fights (that I saw)
No vomiting (that I saw) although I did see someone peeing under the wheelchair users podium.
Lots of mad clothing - Power Rangers anyone?
And all those stages to choose from.
Terrifically well organised. Kudos to the management and security and first aid especially.
All the bands played on time, even Amy Winehouse. Most strange.

I don't know. Youngsters these days don't know how well off they are.

We saw
some of Counting Crows - not very impressed,
Holy Fuck - excellent Canadian band, watch out for them,
Vampire Weekend - awesome New York boys, get their CD. Check them out on YouTube.
Amy Winehouse - phew, she made it, excellent set, belted out the songs Stereophonics - We love you Kelly, so did the crowd
The Zutons - tail end only, looked great,
REM - Great classics but I was not familiar with the new stuff, the crowd talked a lot, lovely moment when everyone raised their mobile phones and they turned the camera on the crowd. It looked like a swarm of fireflies,
The Verve - same as REM really
and bits of other bands who I don't know the names of and varied from OK to really loud and posey to God awful

Saturday, 12 July 2008

On submitting Poetry

An erudite and educational article about submitting poetry for commercial publication from Salt Publication. Asking questions like
why do you want to be published?
why would someone want to spend time and money reading your poems?
what is your unique selling point?
The questions raised can equally be applied to short stories and to literary fiction.

Friday, 11 July 2008

Tales Of Mere Existence - Procrastination

Been there, done that, didn't get my stuff done either.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Tales Of Mere Existence - The Best Book Ever

How to write the best book ever. There are too many 'ouch' moments for me. How about you?

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Novel Writing course

I have this email from the Irish Writers Centre which is usually quite sane but this is madness.

5-day Intensive Creative Writing Course with Carlo Gébler
28 July – 1 August, 10am to 4pm
limited to 10 partipants.

The purpose of the course will be to help those who want to write, advance or finish a novel. By the end of the week, participants will have a much clearer idea of how to advance or finish a complex piece of work.

But here's the sucker punch - 650 Euro.

I mean, what? Who has that sort of money? What do you get out of it? A 2 book deal? I think not. Is Carlo Gebler God, all knowledgable, all powerful, superman type of writer? Does he get undressed in phoneboxes? I think not. What is he going to do that's worth a total of 6,500 Euro?

Or am I misguided. You get what you pay for and all that?

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award

This competition went straight from a longlist to a winner.

Now entering its fourth year, the award, which offers a cash prize of 35,000 euro provided by Cork City Council, with media sponsorship by the Irish Times and in the gift of the Munster Literature Centre, goes from strength to strength.

The winner is Jhumpa Lahiri for Unaccustomed Earth.
dazzling tales of assimilation take readers from Calcutta to Cambridge

and she's won the Pulizer too as well as being beautiful. Is there's anything she can't do? Can she sing in tune?

Click here for interviews with various writers on their reactions to being on the longlist. Note there are 8 from Salt publishing in the UK. They're obviously doing something right.

IRELAND (5 authors)

Mary Rochford (IRELAND)
Gilded Shadows
Tia Publishing, Birmingham, UK
Mary O’Donnell (IRELAND)
Storm over Belfast
New Island, Dublin, Ireland
Gerard Donovan (IRELAND)
Country of the Grand
Faber & Faber Ltd, London, UK
Anne Enright (IRELAND)
Taking Pictures
Jonathan Cape – The Random House Group, London, UK
Roddy Doyle (IRELAND)
The Deportees and other stories
Jonathan Cape – The Random House Group, London, UK
BRITAIN (14 authors including 8 authors from Salt Publishing)

James Waddington (BRITAIN)
Ogo Press, Honley, Holmfirth, UK
Clare Wigfall (BRITAIN)
The Loudest Sound and Nothing
Faber & Faber Ltd, London, UK
Niki Aguirre (BRITAIN)
29 Ways to Drown
Flipped Eye Publishing, Manchester, UK
Wendy Perriam (BRITAIN)
Little Marvel and Other Stories
Robert Hale Limited, London, UK
David Gaffney (BRITAIN)
Aroma Bingo
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Carys Davies (BRITAIN)
Some New Ambush
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Elizabeth Baines (BRITAIN)
Balancing on the Edge of the World
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Padrika Tarrant (BRITAIN)
Broken Things
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Linda Cracknell (BRITAIN)
The Searching Glance
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
William Guy (BRITAIN)
The I Love You Book
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Vanessa Gebbie (BRITAIN)
Words From a Glass Bubble
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Richard Bardsley (BRITAIN)
Body Parts – The Anatomy of Love
Salt Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, Uk
Robert Shearman (BRITAIN)
Tiny Deaths
Comma Press, Manchester, Uk
Adam Marek (BRITAIN)
Instruction Manual for Swallowing
Comma Press, Manchester, Uk

AUSTRALIA (4 authors)

John Clancy (AUSTRALIA)
Her Father’s Daughter
University of Queensland Press, St. Lucia Queensland, Australia
Susan Midalia (AUSTRALIA)
A History of the Beanbag
Uwa Press, Crawley, Australia
Kathryn Lomer (AUSTRALIA)
Camera Obscura
University of Queensland Press, St. Lucia Queensland, Australia
The Boat
Canongate Books Limited, Edinburgh, UK

NEW ZEALAND (4 authors)

Random House New Zealand Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand
Etiquette for a Dinner Party
Random House New Zealand Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand
Elizabeth Smither (NEW ZEALAND)
The Girl Who Proposed
Cape Catley Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand
Witi Ihimaera (NEW ZEALAND)
Ask The Posts Of The House
Raupo Publishing Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand

USA (8 authors)

Jhumpa Lahiri (USA)
Unaccustomed Earth
Alfred A. Knopf Inc., Random House Inc., New York, Usa
Wanda Coleman (USA)
Jazz and Twelve O’Clock Tales
Black Sparrow Books, Boston, Massachusetts, Usa
Benjamin Percy (USA)
Refresh, Refresh
Jonathan Cape – The Random House Group, London, Uk
Janet Kauffman (USA)
Trespassing – Dirt Stories and Field Notes
Wayne State University Press, Detroit, Usa
Jim Shepard (USA)
Like you’d understand, anyway
Alfred A. Knopf Inc., Random House Inc., New York, Usa
Marianne Herrmann (USA)
Signaling For Rescue
New Rivers Press, Moorhead, MN, Usa
Don Waters (USA)
Desert Gothic
University of Iowa Press, Iowa City, Usa
Donald Ray Pollock (USA)
Harvill Secker Editorial – The Random House Group Ltd, London, UK


Alison MacLeod (CANADA)
Fifteen Modern Tales of Attraction
Hamish Hamilton, London, UK


Lions in Winter: stories
MPH Group Publishing, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia


Egoyan Zheng (Qian-Ci Zheng) (TAIWAN)
Urn’s Bottom Village Stories
Press Store Publishing Co., Taichung City, Taiwan


Tubal R. Cain (NIGERIA)
Dandaula and Other African Tales
Precious Styles Nigeria Limited, Jebba, Kwara State, Nigeria

Monday, 7 July 2008

doctor who

Well, thank goodness. Russell T Davies fooled me again. I'm so gullible. David Tenant is still The Doctor. And Rose has a happy ending of sorts. But poor old Donna. How very sad and the Doctor is left lonely and alone again.

From a writer's point of view, try and work out how exactly your emotions were affected by the story. Why were you (was I) so sad at Bad Wolf Bay and again at the end when Donna was left behind? Try and recreate this manipulation in your writing. Make the reader care about your characters as strongly as we care about The Doctor, Rose and Donna. We care about what happens to them, how they feel.

And how do you make a character as sexy and charasmatic as Captain Jack?

Sunday, 6 July 2008

Temple Bar Cultural stuff

Temple Bar isn't just about stag and hen parties. It puts on a lot of interesting stuff. Where do they get the funding? Why don't they ask me to participate? I do have a minor phobia of cobblestones though so I'm always a bit wary of the area. (True!)

They have movies in Meeting House Square every Saturday from July 4th to August 22nd. Free. You can get tickets at the cultural centre or by post.

and a Circus Festival 10-13th July - not just for kids. Lots of quirky acts. Free.

Also a Chocolate Festival - sounds yummy. July 25th to 27th.
I have a great poem with a chocolate theme. I'm willing to read, if only they'd ask!

Saturday, 5 July 2008

A modern day cautionary tales

A children's (?) book from 1962.

Fantastic. Try guessing the rhymes before you scroll down.

Gashlycrumb Tinies by by Edward Gorey. What else has this genius created?

Friday, 4 July 2008


Come and see my etchings.
If you are anyway interested in Rembrandt, make a beeline for the exhibition in the Chester Beatty Library. Etchings from the Rembrandthuis in Amsterdam. There are also some of his paintings in the National Gallery.

When: now to 14 September 2008

In the modern world Rembrandt Van Rijn’s reputation rests largely on his magnificent paintings, which are amongst the most treasured possessions of the great art museums of the world. Like Albrecht Dürer before him, he was not just a great painter but also a graphic artist of outstanding ability. He was a dedicated draughtsman of the highest skill and printmaker of enormous inventiveness and verve. In his lifetime his reputation was spread far and wide by the quality of his prints, which were avidly collected.

The Rembrandthuis in Amsterdam (Museum het Rembrandthuis) not only preserves the house where Rembrandt lived when he was at the height of his fame and fortune but it is also a centre for the collection, preservation and study of Rembrandt’s works and especially of his etchings and dry points. The Chester Beatty Library holds an important collection of European prints, including those produced in the 18th Century by the Irishman, Captain Baillie which exploited some of the surviving Rembrandt plates.

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Boyne Berries Submissions sought

Issue four of Boyne Berries will be published by Boyne Writers Group, Trim next September and submissions are invited.

Deadline:15 August 2008.

Submission guidelines:
Poetry: Send no more than three poems. Each poem should be 70 lines or under.
Prose: Stories etc should be 1000 words or under.

Poems and prose should be original, previously unpublished and not currently submitted or accepted for publication elsewhere.
Include a brief biography as you would like it to appear in the magazine and a postal address for free contributors copy.
Contributors may be invited to read their work at the launch of the magazine.
Some of the items published may be included on the magazine website.
Post: Boyne Writers, 33 Avondale Drive, Trim, Co. Meath.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Arts Council Bursaries

These are the lucky recipients of the arts council bursaries. Some well known names and some new ones (for me)
Not me though. What does an emerging writer have to do to get some arts council money? Maybe I didn't ask for enough.

Claire Kilroy Multi-annual bursary. €45,000 awarded over 3 years: €15,000 in 2008, €15,000 in 2009 and €15,000 in 2010 Fingal County Council

David Wheatley United Kingdom €10,000 (Wonder why the English arts council doesn't fund him?)

Eoghan Walls Meath County Council €5,000 (Wonder why the Arts Council NI don't fund him?)

Julia Kelly Multi-annual bursary. €30,000 awarded over 2 years: €15,000 in 2008 and €15,000 in 2009. Wicklow County Council (Never heard of her of her book)

Leo Cullen Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council €8,500

Martina Evans United Kingdom €7,000 (She's already had a grant from the Arts Council of England. She must be doing something right. I've never heard of her.)

Mia Gallagher Dublin City Council €8,500

Mike McCormack Multi-annual bursary. €25,000 awarded over 2 years: €15,000 in 2008 and €10,000 in 2009. Galway County Council

Oran Ryan Dublin City Council €8,000

Philip O Ceallaigh Romania €12,000

Richard Tillinghast South Tipperary County Council €7,000

Selina Guinness Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council €8,000

Susan Carleton Cavan County Council €15,000 (no links)

Valerie Sirr Fingal County Council €600

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

I'm back home, refreshed, excited and desperately sad about Doctor Who. Are my Saturdays to be changed forever? No more servings of David Tennant? Will the next doctor in fact be a woman?

Actually, you should watch Doctor Who with the eye of a writer. There are many techniques used by the fabulous Russell T Davies and his successor Stephen Moffat that you can learn from. Particularly watch the Doctor Who Confidential which immediately follows Doctor Who on BBC 3. The writers often talk about how they do it. One comment that sticks in my mind is that if no one has died in the last 10 pages, Russell has to kill someone off. Like Raymond Chandler and enter a man with a gun.