I worked as an editor, sub-editor and writer for many years on magazines and newspapers in London, the Netherlands and my native Cork, Ireland. God, I hated it. There was also a pocket of time where I trained as a director in a London off-West End theatre. That was as fantastic as it was bonkers.
Writing fiction is something I’ve done since I was a kid – the earliest story I kept for posterity was about a sad dog. But I’ve only started writing in a focused way in the past three years, thanks to a fantastic writing group (seriously, find one, join it, is my writing advice).
I recently won the From the Well Short Story Competition 2017, run by Cork County Library and Arts Services, was the runner-up in the UCC/Carried in Waves Short Story Competition in 2015 (the story is available to listen to on Soundcloud here), shortlisted for the Colm Toíbín International Short Story Award in 2016 and Highly Commended for it in 2017, and longlisted for the RTE Guide/Penguin Ireland Short Story Competition 2015. My work has been published in Halo Literary Magazine, Spontaneity, The Incubator and the Sunday People newspaper.
A novel has been in progress for some time, the opening chapters of which blagged their way on to the longlist for the Greenbean Novel Fair 2016, held by the Irish Writers Centre. It’s an area I’m particularly interested in working on, and this autumn I’m being mentored by the American writer Marie-Helene Bertino, who is in Cork for three months as the recipient of this year’s Frank O’Connor Fellowship. I can’t begin to tell you how far outside my comfort zone I feel.
This blog is a sharing of the information I stumble across as part of a steep learning curve, the occasional book review when something makes an impression and the odd cheeky plug for any little personal victories. Apologies in advance for those,
Thanks for reading,