West Cork Literature Festival

The first batch of world-famous West Cork Literary Festival writing workshops are now on sale. I’m honoured to say I’ll be teaching the novel week long workshops (July 13-17) alongside the incredible Paul Muldoon for poetry and Cynan Jones for short story. 

This year the festival will also host Anne Enright, Roxane Gay and Eimear McBride among many others.

The last time I was a West Cork it was wonderful and I met so many amazing writers and did events with Eoin McNamee, Glenn Patterson and Liz Nugent.

Here’s the blurb for my week-long novel course – click here for more info. 

“Over the five days you will look at how to grow your story idea into a novel that grips your reader from start to finish. You will look at that crucial opening that hooks the reader, how to keep the narrative momentum going through that difficult middle and lead to a satisfying ‘inevitable surprise’ of an ending. You will look at creating believable complex characters that stand out and stay with your reader, the many uses of dialogue and how to find your voice. You will explore world building, the importance of setting and how it can become another character in your story. If you are happy to you can share your work-in-progress and get constructive problem-solving focused feedback. The course will finish with advice on what every debut novelist needs to know, covering agents, building a readership and an online presence, making industry connections and a behind-the-scenes look at those coveted literary prizes.”

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Interviewing Anne Enright

Anne Enright in Conversation

I’m excited to interview Man Booker Prize Winner Anne Enright for the second time, this time on home turf. The first time was in Waterstones Piccadilly for Word Factory earlier this year. We also sat on some panels together whilst at a literature festival in Morges, Switzerland.

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Next February 9th, I’ll be interviewing her at the Seamus Heaney Homeplace, here’s the blurb…

‘Booker Prize-winning novelist Anne Enright is one of the most celebrated writers working in Ireland today. Her work is part of a great tradition of Irish writing that explores themes of family life, relationships, love, repression and memory.

Enright won the 2007 Booker Prize for her novel The Gathering, a story about the pull of family and the lure of home. Her first novel was The Wig My Father Wore and subsequent works have included What Are You Like?, The Forgotten Waltz and her most recent The Green Road. Her awards also include the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the Encore Award and the Irish Novel of the Year.

From 2015 to 2018 she was the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction and we are delighted to welcome her to The Helicon where she will talk about her work and career with Paul McVeigh.’

Come along, it should be a wonderful night.

A Writer’s Life For Me

It’s been quite a week!

I flew to London last Thursday to teach a class The Author & Social Media and to read at an event A Novel Affair, both at the Irish Cultural Centre. It was a great class, and the event went really well – after readings from the authors, there was a long and interesting Q&A from the audience made up of writers.

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Alan McMonagle and me

On Friday I interviewed Booker-winner Anne Enright at the biggest bookshop in Europe, Waterstones Piccadilly. The packed event was a real insight to Enright’s writing process and I’ve never heard her read so well.

Anne Enright and me

After a sold-out class in Lewes on Saturday I went to Brighton where The Good Son was the City Reads and to see old friends.

I was back in London on Monday for meetings with my old pal and BBC National Short Story Award-winner KJ Orr and my agent Carrie Kania.

On Tuesday I went Swansea in Wales for the shortlisting meeting for the Dylan Thomas Prize and got to meet some of the panel. The next day I taught at Swansea University before flying back to Belfast.

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It’s wonderful traveling around doing interesting work and meeting fascinating people but there are times when a night in your own bed is priceless. So, after a day at home I’m heading off now to Dublin for the weekend. I’m delighted to be reading at The Franco-Irish Literary Festival with events taking place at the Alliance Francaise and Dublin Castle. You can download the programme and come along to see Rob Doyle, Lisa McInerney and Anne Enright – the events are free!

You can check my other upcoming events in the flyer below. Come up and say hello!

March-June 2018

Interviewing Anne Enright in London

Last year I had the honour of sharing the stage with Anne Enright at Le Livre Sur les Quais in Switzerland last year. This St Patrick’s Eve I’ll be interviewing her live on stage in London for Word Factory. More info below…

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WORD FACTORY PRESENTS:

SPECIAL EVENT – An Evening with Anne Enright

On the eve of St Patrick’s Day, meet one of the most celebrated literary figures of our age. Man Booker prize winner Anne Enright is the Laureate for Irish Fiction, an acclaimed novelist, short story writer and essayist. Her books include The Wig My Father Wore, The Gathering and The Portable Virgin. In this one-off London event, reading new work commissioned by Word Factory for the Change Maker series, Anne will explore the boundaries of short fiction in new work and her writing life, in conversation with Word Factory associate director Paul McVeigh. Paul, who lives in Belfast, is author of the acclaimed The Good Son, set in the Northern Ireland of the 1970’s.

DON’T MISS THIS MEMORABLE EVENING.

Salon limited to 80 places.

Date and Time

Fri 16 March 2018

19:00 – 20:30 GMT

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Location

Waterstones

203-206 Piccadilly

London

W1J 9HD

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