Proofs of ‘Common People’

And they’re off…

Heading out into the world for review are the proofs for the ‘Common People’ anthology edited by Kit de Waal. I’m delighted to have written my first piece of memoir alongside these wonderful writers…

Contributors Include:
Damian Barr
Malorie Blackman OBE
Lisa Blower
Jill Dawson
Louise Doughty
Stuart Maconie
Chris McCrudden
Lisa McInerney
Daljit Nagra
Dr Dave O’Brien
Cathy Rentzenbrink
Anita Sethi
Adelle Stripe
Tony Walsh
Alex Wheatle

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The anthology is out to buy in May 2019.

 

 

Podcast: A New Short Story

The Art of Border Living Podcasts

The short story podcasts inspired by the border in Ireland and the WW1 centenary are now available to listen to online. They feature new writing by me, Garrett Carr, Claire Louise Bennett, Nuala O’ Connor and Women’s Fiction Prize-winner Kamila Shamsie.

The stories were commissioned by Verbal Arts and 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary. 

You can listen to the stories here.

Arts Council Funding

I’m grateful to the Arts Council of Northern Ireland for their continued support of my writing by awarding me a grant under their individual Artists Programme.

I’ve been lucky to have been helped by ACNI for a number of years now, including travel grants to Asia and Australia.

I’ll use the money to devote time to work on my second novel.

Print

 

 

Only 10 Tickets Left – A National Day for Writers in Dublin

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What’s happening? Words Ireland @ ILFDublin: A National Day for Writers is a one-day get together for professional and emerging writers working in all forms. It takes place at IMMA, Dublin on Friday 25 May.

What is it, exactly? We’re building the ideal environment for writers to gather together, reflect on your creative and professional practice, catch up with industry leaders and be inspired.

So what will happen on the day? There’ll be writer’s manifestos and lectures, and presentations from writers on their recent projects and collaborations. You’ll hear how your peers manage their time and workload, and develop opportunities for themselves at home and abroad. Opportunities to discuss and debate development and funding of literature in Ireland. Events that will help evolve your thinking on how words can be produced and performed on stage, and another that offers serious industry insight from publishers, agents, book sales analysts, etc.

What are the benefits? As well as informative, writer-centric events, we’re gathering 40 literature organisations and lots of industry personnel together to meet writers in the Great Hall at IMMA. Grab a free tea/coffee and sit down with the people and organisations who regularly offer writers work.

How does it work? There are nine events to choose from on the day. Each is short and sweet, 50 minutes long. You’ll get to choose the events that are right for you, then everyone sits in on the final keynote event. Then free beers!

What’s the line up? The line-up of speakers confirmed so far:

Anne Enright | Kit de Waal | John Boyne | Marina Carr | Alan Titley | Selina Tusitala Marsh | Dani Gill | Julia Bird | Stephen James Smith | Mia Gallagher | Gavin Corbett | Ashleigh Young | Paul McVeigh | Sarah Webb | Paul Perry | Oisín McGann | Sheena Wilkinson | Christodoulos Makris | Suzanne Walsh | Nathan O’Donnell | Susan McKay | Damian O’Donnell | Freya McClements | Julieann Campbell | Julia Churchill | André Streedt | Neil Belton | Sarah Bannan | Marcella Bannon | Jo Mangan | Michael O’Reilly | Ruth Hegarty | Sinéad Mac Aodha | Declan Meade

Is it pricey? Early bird tickets are €45 and general admission is €55. That includes free lunch of sandwiches and drinks reception. Group tickets for 3 cost €120 in total, so if you can encourage two more writer friends to join you, it’ll only cost €40 each. Click here to book.

I have a published book that I want to pitch to Film Directors! Great stuff; we have just the thing for you. We’ll be pairing ten ticket holders with ten film directors, so you can pitch your story to each one. More details coming soon.

Words Ireland is a collective of seven literature organisations working collaboratively to create an environment in which writers can develop sustainable writing lives: Children’s Books Ireland, Irish Writers Centre, Literature Ireland, Munster Literature Centre, Poetry Ireland, Publishing Ireland, The Stinging Fly.

Secret Library Podcast

Recently I did an interview with writer Caroline Donohue and you can listen to it as of today. Caroline asked excellent questions and we had a great chat – I talk far too much! Here’s what Caroline says on her site. I hope you enjoy it.

The Secret Library

Paul McVeigh wrote a story in an afternoon that took twenty years.

How is that possible? We gather images over time, trying to figure out how they fit together. Paul had pieces of a story that didn’t quite fit until suddenly, they did. And then the story came out almost all at once in a single sitting. How do you know when it’s time to write a story? And how do you know when to give up on an idea? These are questions that have plagued so many writers and my clients. Paul was the perfect person to discuss them with. Having written fiction, theater, comedy, and a writing teacher himself, Paul has a breadth of experience and a sensitivity to this topic that will blow you away. His debut novel, The Good Son won countless awards and becomes a favorite of everyone who reads it.

This conversation was both deep and funny, an incredible dive into the places where writing comes from and how to know when you’ve got a story that won’t let you go. This promises to be one you’ll listen to more than once. I have been waiting and waiting to share this one! I’m so glad it’s time for you to hear it.

Discussed in Episode 69 with Paul McVeigh:

  • Turning the original short story into the novel The Good Son | Mentioned: Article about the process on Paul’s blog
  • How ideas evolve into stories
  • Getting clear about what is meant and how people often say things to cover up what they mean
  • Writing for the stage and what it taught Paul about dialog
  • Why you’re bananas if you don’t keep a notebook
  • The elements of the story Paul wrote in an afternoon after pondering for 20 years
  • Collecting three distinct elements to build a story
  • Creating a story that is the duration of a hug
  • Stephen Johnson’s spark file
  • Why good writing is never wasted
  • Paul is waiting for this ability to match his intention
  • Being a risk-taker as well as a writer
  • The real question: What will possibly go wrong if I give it a try?
  • Making friends with the best writers and how this will help your own work
  • Connecting by going in with an offer, not with an ask
  • Find writers who are better from you and learn from them
  • How working with actors helped him find meaning behind the dialogue
  • Turning the short story into a novel
  • Writing with a child as protagonist
  • How writing about the Troubles in Ireland forced Paul to relive that time
  • Going deep with your writing so it becomes more universal
  • Learning to look back with kindness and forgiveness
  • The importance of intention in writing
  • Basking in having completed the book.

The Good Son 3rd Editon

Buy Here

Winner of The Polari Prize

“Pungently funny and shot through with streaks of aching sadness.” Patrick Gale
“I devoured it in a day, but I’ve thought about it for many, many more.” Lisa McInerney
“A triumph of storytelling. An absolute gem.” Donal Ryan