Friday, 31 May 2013

Sean O'Faolain International Short Story Competition

The Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition is an annual short story competition open to writers from around the world. It is dedicated to one of Ireland’s most accomplished story writers and theorists, sponsored by the Munster Literature Centre.

If the winner comes to Cork to collect their prize, we will lavish them with hotel accommodation, meals, drinks and VIP access to the literary stars at the Cork International Short Story Festival (18 - 22 September 2013).

  • First Prize: €2,000 (*approx $2602.11/£1700.04), publication in the literary journal Southword, AND a week-long residency at Anam Cara Writer's and Artist's Retreat. 
  • Second Prize: €500 and publication in Southword. 
  • Four other shortlisted entries will be selected for publication in Southword and receive a publication fee of €120.
Deadline: 31 July 2013.
  • original, unpublished and unbroadcast short stories in the English language of 3,000 words or fewer
entry fee of €15, US $20 or £15.

Judge: Joyce Russell

Link for more info here

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

I Slam Therefore I Am

Wexford Arts Centre

Saturday 1 June


FREE, Advance booking is essential

053 9123764

A night of poetic performance; an interactive literary experience; humour, politics, social commentary, tragedy and competition.

Come and join four Irish and four Welsh poets as they engage in cultural battle to celebrate the launch of the Wales Ireland Spoken-word and Poetry Alliance (WISPA). Compered by Dominic Williams of write4word; who will be wearing a shirt chosen by Wexford's finest fashion critics; among the poets will be Clare Ferguson-Walker, Grace Wells, Joe Neil and Dave Urwin. A musical interlude will be provided by our friends from the Caca Milis Cabaret.

Caca Milis Cabaret are proud to announce that Corner Boy will be playing the musical interlude at the Poetry Slam

WISPA has been established by Coracle - Connecting Creativity between South East Ireland and South West Wales and part funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Interreg 4a Programme.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Stinging Fly Submissions

For the Spring 2014 issue, the Stinging Fly are accepting submissions in June only.

Nuala Ní Chonchúir is the guest fiction editor for this issue.

As part of her guest editorship Nuala will include a flash fiction showcase. Submissions for the showcase (stories up to 500 words, only one story to be submitted per writer) will be accepted by e-mail only and on one day only: Saturday June 22nd, which is international flash fiction day. We will give further instructions on how to make your submission closer to the time.

All other submissions — poetry, short stories — must be submitted by post in the usual way, following the guidelines below. Please read them.
No more than one story and/or four poems should be submitted during any one submission period.

Writers may submit a story for the flash fiction showcase and submit a second longer story by post.

See link here

And see what rocks Nuala's boat here and what doesn't!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Dalkey Book Festival

14-16 June get down to Dalkey

Kevin Barry - Carl Bernstein - John Boyne - Stuart Carolan - David Coleman - Eoin Colfer - Gary Cooke - John Colleary - Jonathan Dee - Roddy Doyle - Anne Enright - Robert Fisk - Selina Guinness - Sarah Harte - Declan Kiberd - Oisín McGann - Frank McGuinness - Bernard McLaverty - Pauline McLynn - Midnight Poe - Eamon Morrissey - Barry Murphy - Edna O'Brien - Dawn O'Porter - Colm O'Regan - Uri Orlev - Donal Ryan - Sarah Webb

- and many more

I like the Maeve Binchy retrospectives.  And there's an event in a graveyard that's sold out slready. Perhaps they'll put it on a second night?

No poetry though and No Poetry Diva magic!

Booking on line now - very reasonable prices

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Kylemore Writing Retreat


Kylemore Writing Retreat July 11-14th, 2013

Led by Mary Madec and Conall O'Cuinn SJ

So you’ve always had a penchant for words and long to discover what it would be like to really put pen to paper. Then this writing experience is for you. Discover the freedom that comes with creative expression as we gently guide you in the art of putting heart to page and discovering for yourself your true voice as you begin to put words on the stories and poems inside you.

The practice of writing can change your life no matter where you are on the page. The peaceful setting and the solidarity of other like-minded people will inspire you and rejuvenate your confidence. Our job will be to provide a safe and encouraging space for you to discover the
wonders of your heart and the written word.

Places limited to 12 

Cost: €400 (accommodation, food and workshops)
Contact : Mary Madec 086-8140980

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

RTÉ Guide / Puffin Children’s Short Story Competition 2013

There are four categories to enter and the story can be about whatever they want to write about: funny, serious, scary or an adventure.

* 10 yrs old and younger – up to 300 words (with an illustration or picture, if you want!)
* 11-13 yrs old – up to 500 words
* 14-16 yrs old– up to 750 words
* 17 yrs old+ – up to 1000 words

There are some great prizes to be won for the Winners and Runners up!

• Each category winner will have their story published in and issue of the RTÉ Guide
• The winners will also receive a Kindle E- Reader and a hamper of books worth €50.
• And as an added bonus, the Winner of the under-10 category will be recorded by a TRTÉ presenter for broadcast!
• The two runners Up in each category will receive their own hamper of books worth €50.
• The winners and runners up, along with their parents, will be invited to attend an awards ceremony in RTÉ, getting to meet some of the RTÉjr and TRTÉ presenters and take a tour of some of our sets!  

Closing date for all entries is 5.00pm on Friday, June 7, 2013

There's a link here to the RTE Guide Facebook page

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Roscommon Open Mic

Jessamine O'Connor is launching her poetry chapbook, Hellsteeth with an open mic.

Roscommon Womens Network
The Old Mill

Wednesday 29th May 7.30pm

Poetry and Short Stories.

All welcome

Sunday, 19 May 2013

KBC Dalkey Book Festival Four Forty Story Competition

Competition for up and coming young writers

We urgently need some good stories, so we’re launching a terrific new short story competition in association with KBC. To celebrate 40 years of KBC in Ireland and 4 years of the Dalkey Book Festival, your story must be 440 words or less. If you are 13 or under (the best age for writers, we think) we desperately want you to enter. Please, please, enter as soon as you can; by next week we might be reduced to reading phone books and junk mail.

A prizewinner will be selected in each category (9 and under and 10-13yrs).
Each prizewinner will win book tokens to the value of €250, Dalkey Book Festival tickets, a festival lunch (with a chance to meet some of our children’s authors) and a two night family stay with dinner in the Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel, Killiney. Get writing!

Deadline: Monday 3rd June 2013 at 10.30am.
  • Entry to this competition is open to children aged 13 years and under on 3 June 2013 who are living in Ireland
  • Entrants must write a fictional short story (no more than 440 words in length) Entry is via an online entry form available here

Dalkey Festival is

Friday, 17 May 2013

Haiku for Mars

Nasa is looking for haikus in the form of a 'message for Mars' that will accompany their Maven mission in November. They will take 3 with them.

Deadline: 1 July

Link here

An online public vote to determine the top three messages to be placed on the DVD will begin July 15.

"The Going to Mars campaign offers people worldwide a way to make a personal connection to space, space exploration, and science in general, and share in our excitement about the MAVEN mission," said Stephanie Renfrow, lead for the MAVEN Education and Public Outreach program at CU/LASP. 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Poetry Ireland Introductions

If you are Dublin based, check out these up and coming poets selected to read as part of Poetry Ireland Introductions. Some new names and some that may well already be familiar but you can be sure that many will be showing up on the radar in the coming years. Is this the new establishment?

The 1st series in the Poetry Ireland Introductions Readings 2013. Featuring:
1. Madeleine Barnes
2. Stephenie Conn
3. Brian Kirk
4. Annemarie Ní Churreáin
When: Thursday 30th May 2013 @ 6.30pm

The 2nd series in the Poetry Ireland Introductions Readings 2013. Featuring:
1. Caoilinn Hughes
2. Victoria Hughes
3. Sheila Mannix
4. Alan Weadick
When: Thursday 4th June 2013 @ 6.30pm

The final series of the Poetry Ireland Introductions Readings 2013. Featuring:
1. Laim Duffy
2. Caoimhín Eoin Mac Unfraidh
3. Kerrie O'Brien
4. Katie Sheehan
When: Thursday 11th June 2013 @ 6.30pm

Where: The Irish Writers' Centre, 19 Parnell Square, D1
Admission: Free

Monday, 13 May 2013

Readings at the National Gallery Dublin

Wednesday lunchtimes in the National Gallery, Poetry Ireland is wheeling out some names. I've missed the first one but here's the rest:

15th May Mary O'Donnell
22nd May Michael Kruger (new to me)
29th May Peter Sirr

It's usually well hidden, no signage so ask at the desk.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Wigtown Poetry Competition

The Wigtown Poetry Competition is Scotland’s most prestigious poetry prize. Fees are quite steep though.

Winning poets will be invited to appear at the Wigtown Book Festival in 2013.

The winners, the runner-up and 8 commended poems will be published in Southlight, the Dumfries and Galloway Literary magazine.

Deadline: 5pm Friday 31st May 2013 

Judges: Robin Robertson, Meg Bateman and Liz Niven

Link here

1st Prize £2000
Runner-up £400
8 runners up £25

Top Prize money has decreased but there are small additional prizes now.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Between Ribs and Figs Reading

I am delighted to be reading at this very tasty gathering this Sunday in Ranalagh, starting at 1:30pm. Organised by The Ash Sessions, it will be a great afternoon of poetry and music.

Dimitri X, the organiser says

“…men contain feminine characteristics just as much as women contain masculine ones […]. But I also think we should respect and maintain the differences between masculine and feminine. Creative energy is partly about the ability to negotiate between the two poles [of the masculine and the feminine]; it’s a current that runs between them.”

Poet Vicki Feaver – from “No More Mrs. Nice” (Magma, No. 13 – Winter 1998)

The Ash Sessions is pleased to present the “Between Ribs & Figs” Reading & Music Series. The title of the series is a nod to that current of energy that runs between the two poles referred to by Feaver – with the rib representing the masculine pole of creation, and the fig, a symbol of the female sex, the feminine pole. The series, presented in two parts will showcase poets and musicians whose creative energy has produced work that reflects the way in which each engage and negotiate with the current of energy that runs between the poles of the ‘rib’ and the ‘fig’, producing work that is vibrant, and work that vibrates.

Part I of the series will feature performances by:


There will be duende in the coffee cups, and duende on the streets of Ranelagh. Please come along and grab your piece of it. It will be a stunning afternoon of poetry, spoken word and music. Part II of the series will be held in September/October 2013.

So - mark May 12th in your calendars. All thriller. No filler. Bring your sweet as(s)hes down, starting at 1:30pm – show will start at 2pm on the dot.

Keep on burning well,
The Ash Sessions


“Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man”
– Genesis 2:22

“If your heart is in your mouth,
sear it, eat it with figs”
– Michelle Mcgrane, “Thirteen Ways with Figs”

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Bridport Prize

This is one of the most prestigious writing contests in the British literary calendar.

Do you have a really good poem or short story? Or a few? I mean, really really REALLY good?

poem - no more than 42 lines
short story - no more than 5,000 words.   
flash fiction category - stories of up to 250 words 

This year’s judges are Liz Lochhead (poems) Tania Hershman (flash fiction) and Andrew Miller (short stories).

    Closing: 31st May 14 (postmarked)

    Prizes: In each of the main categories (Short Stories, Poems) - £5,000, £1,000, £500.  There are also ten runners-up prizes of £50.  These are called ‘supplementary prizes’ to make you feel less like an also-ran.  The top four poems will be submitted to the Forward Prize. 

Prizes in the Flash Fiction category are £1,000, £500, £250, plus three supplementary awards of £25.
The top 13 short stories will be entered for the National Short Story Prize worth £15,000, and the Sunday Times Short Story Award worth £30,000.  
There's also a prize for the highest placed piece from a writer in Dorset. 
All winners will be invited to an awards ceremony on October 14th at the Bridport Open Book Festival.

The judges have some pointers here well worth reading.

Note: Entries must never have been published, self-published, published on any website, blog or online forum, broadcast nor winning or placed (as in 2nd, 3rd,, runner up etc) in any other competition.

    Entry Fees:Poems - £7.  Short Stories - £8.  Flash Fiction - £6

    Comp Page: Click Here.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Links to some of my work available online

Saturday Woman Poet on Poethead blog has two of my poems here
Amsterdam Otto Recommend poem that won the Plough Prize reading here
Californian Fruit in Burning Bush online magazine here
The Happiest Sock and other poems are in this video from Ignite
Drinking Now poem read at The Festival of The Fires here
Reaching Agreement poem read on YouTube here
Reading some Science Poems at Ignite here
Those Days are Nothing Now on Barehands online magazine here
While It Lasted on here 
Two poems on And Other Poems here
What to Think About Instead at ofipress here
By Strawberry Beds from Poetry Bus 3 on Soundcloud here 
Painted Yellow Line from Poetry Bus 2 on Soundcloud here
Slow Poison is in Crannog 10 here-  Update: Actually this pdf doesn't get as far as my poem so you'll have to buy the book!
Developing Shadows is in Abridged 17 here
Appropriate Gift is in Abridged 23 here

Short Story
Saturday's Kiss on This Reading Life blog here

Non Fiction
Berlin Wall from RTE Radio Sunday Miscellany here

Friday, 3 May 2013

Get Immersed in Verse

 One Day Poetry workshop with Enda Coyle-Greene. Saturday 1st June 2013.

Writers' Cafe - Wednesday 9am to 1pm, 7pm to 9pm

W.B. Yeats once wrote, ‘‘A poem comes right with a click like a closing box.” To discover how that can happen, get immersed in verse during an all-day workshop at Carousel Creates Writers' Centre, Dublin. Participants will be engaged in writing exercises designed to be both informative and fun and are invited to bring along a poem with which they would like some gentle, constructive help. 

Explore the line break, find freshness and vitality in language and imagery, and the importance of reading before writing: just some of the elements that go into the making of a successful poem. Participants will be engaged in writing exercises designed to be both informative and fun and are invited to bring along a poem with which they would like some gentle, constructive help. There will also be practical advice on how to present your poems when submitting to magazines and/or competitions.
  •  The workshop is suitable for anyone who is writing or wants to write poetry.
  •  Numbers will be limited to ensure maximum participation.
The workshop is led by widely published and frequent RTE contributor; poet Enda Coyle-Green. Enda won the Patrick Kavanagh Award in 2006  for  her collection of poetry ‘Snow Negatives’.

Date: Saturday, June 1st 2013, 9am-5pm
Cost: €65.00 (including lunch, coffee)
To Book a Place: contact Carolann Copland at
or 086 192 3613 – Website:

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Poets Meet Painters writing competition

The Poets Meet Painters competition 2013 is open for entries.

This also incorporates a new Mill Cove Poetry Award.

As always, this is a competition for poems inspired by works of art exhibited or sponsored by Mill Cove Gallery and Sculpture Garden.

For a sample slideshow click here

Additionally, the highest placed poem inspired by a ceramic work will receive the Mill Cove Poetry Award. If the overall winning poem relates to a ceramic work, the next eligible poem will receive the Mill Cove Poetry Award.

Check eligible illustrations in Irish Ceramics: the best of Irish ceramic sculpture (available for purchase here ).

The competition will be judged by Leanne O'Sullivan.

There will be a first prize of €200, and in addition there will be a Mill Cove Gallery award for a poem inspired by a ceramic work.

Deadline: 17 June 2013

Each poem must not exceed 40 lines
Up to three poems may be submitted per entry.
A fee of €8 per entry is payable via PayPal or cheque

For full details of the competition and how to enter, visit