Sunday 31 October 2010

Arts Council Grantees

Who got an Arts Council Grant this year? Interesting they tell you the names of the panel.

Bursary, Round 2, 2010

Panel: Aoife O'Sullivan, Kathleen Tynan, Fergus Sheil, Catherine Nunes, Deirdre Mulrooney, David Bolger, John Duncan, Mike Fitzpatrick, peter Cody, Sarah Pierce, Liam Ó Maoladha, Ellen Cranitch, Caoimhin MacAoidh, Tessa Hadley, Kevin Barry, Gerald Dawe, Marie Lo

The Arts Council received a total of 275 applications for this award and has offered a total 59 awards in response

Armstrong, Aileen Galway County Council €6,000

Baxter, Greg Dublin City Council €8,000

Brady, Jennifer Dublin City Council €5,720

Graham, Kevin Dublin City Council €2,880

Harpur, James Cork County Council €8,000

Logue, Antonia Dublin City Council €7,190

Maguire, Jim Wexford County Council €3,000

McCarrick, Jacqueline Louth County Council €750

Murray, Kathleen Dublin City Council €6,460

O Ceallaigh, Philip International €12,000

O'Callaghan, Billy Cork County Council €8,000

Quinn, Leeanne Dublin City Council €3,000

Regan, Nell Dublin City Council €8,000

St John, Philip Wicklow County Council €8,000

Whitney, Karl South Dublin County Council €3,000

Bursary, Round 1, 2010

Panel: Louis de Paor, Sinéad Mac Aodhan, Nuala Ní Dhomhnaíll, Hugo Hamilton, Vona Groarke, James Ryan, Enda Wyley, Maoliosa Boyle, Nicky Gogan, John Hutchinson, Niall Mc Cullough, Grace Weir, Laurie Uprichard, John Scott, Marina Rafter, Kirsten Sheridan, Lesley McKimm, Neil Connolly, Philip Hammond, Ian Wilson, Deirdre Gribbin, Jessica Fuller, Róise Goan, Tríona Ní Dhuibhir, Conall Morrison, Justine Foster, Mark O'Brien, Eina McHugh, Zoe Conway, Nicholas Carolan, Máire Breatnach, T.V. Honan

The Arts Council received a total of 650 applications for this award and has offered a total of 111 awards in response

Auge, Celeste Galway County Council €3,000

Barrett, Colin Dublin City Council €3,000

Casby, Aoife Galway County Council €3,000

Casey, Eileen South Dublin County Council €650

Close, Helena Clare County Council €5,000

D'Arcy Collins, Stephen Cork County Council €3,000

Dyar, Martin Mayo County Council €3,000

Fanning, Gerard Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council €15,000

Hayes, Katy Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council €8,000

Healy, Alan Dublin City Council €7,000

Higgins, Orla Galway City Council €5,000

Kehoe, Denis Dublin City Council €6,000

Kelly, Ronan Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council €3,000

McCloskey, Molly Multi-annual bursary. €22,000 awarded over 2 years: €11,000 in 2010, and €11,000 2011 Dublin City Council €11,000

McKinley, Barry Kilkenny County Council €5,000

O'Loughlin, Ed Multi-annual bursary. €22,000 awarded over 2 years: €12,000 in 2010 and €10,000 in 2011 Dublin City Council €12,000

O'Malley, Mary Galway County Council €5,000

O'Sullivan, Leanne Cork County Council €10,000

Quinn, Justin International €12,000

Roper, Mark Kilkenny County Council €5,000

Stairs, Susan ublin City Council €5,000

Whyte, Pádraic Louth County Council €3,000

Saturday 30 October 2010

Put this on your Christmas List

You know someone who would love to find this under the tree. Yes, a calendar of photos of beer cans of Birmingham! For sale on lulu here.

Friday 29 October 2010

Rolling Sun Book Festival

Have you heard about the inaugural Rolling Sun Book Festival, to be held in Westport over the weekend of November 12 to 14 next?

The quirky boutique festival aims to evoke the deep layers of our Celtic traditions – bardic and poetic, musical and carnival, cultural and spiritual peppered with a cocktail of craic and a soupcon of daftness.

And where better to do that than in the shadow of the ancient spiritual mountain, Croagh Patrick.

Fancy gaining a deeper understanding of the lyricism and shadowed layers of award-winning writer, Claire Keegan’s works.

“The feel for the form of the Wicklow-born writer Claire Keegan is as unwavering as if she had first begun to sing opera in the mountains without ever having a music lesson. Her subversive stories are written with the sureness of touch possessed by only the most natural of musicians,” Eileen Battersby in the Irish Times.

Longford-born critic and writer, Belinda McKeon interviews Ms Keegan after she has read from her work in the Plaza Hotel on Saturday morning, November 13.

Later that evening, Belinda will read from her own work at the Sea, Sky and Shore Gallery on James Street.

Put poet Paul Durcan and Cór Mhaigh Eo together in Holy Trinity Church on Saturday night with a recital of songs and poetry by this innovative mingling of song and poetry.

The Rolling Sun Book Festival will be opened by Harry Hughes at 9.30pm, at the Clew Bay Hotel, on Friday, November 12.

The full programme is on Facebook (search for Rolling Sun Festival), or, for further information, contact 098 28088.

Thursday 28 October 2010

Salt launches new Irish imprint

Chris Agee, the Editor of Irish Pages, has joined Salt as the editor for Ireland, opening a new office of the literary business in Belfast. He will be responsible for developing a new programme of four to six Irish titles a year from April 2011. The business will operate under the imprint, Salt Ireland.

“I am delighted and honoured to be invited by Salt to undertake this role,” says Agee. “The Salt Ireland imprint will, uniquely, combine Irish editorial control with large British distribution. Like all other Salt titles, the imprint will produce books of the highest standard, on a par with the production values of The Gallery Press or Faber. In effect, Salt Ireland will become the island’s fifth major poetry press.”

Chris Agee’s third collection, (Salt, 2009), was short-listed for the 2010 Ted Hughes Award for New Work in poetry, funded by the Poet Laureate and organized by the Poetry Society in London. His anthology, The New North: Contemporary Poetry from Northern Ireland, will be published in Britain by Salt in January 2011. Irish Pages

The appointment was welcomed by Chris Hamilton-Emery, “Chris Agee is a gifted editor and poet, this new appointment marks our long term commitment to new Irish writing and we all look forward to developing a significant list of the highest quality.”

Submissions from Irish poets (North and South, published and unpublished), or non-Irish poets permanently resident in Ireland, are welcome and should be sent to Salt Ireland, Irish Pages Ltd, 129 Ormeau Road, Belfast BT7 ISH.

They have quite a few Irish poets on their list already. I hope they are looking for new names.

Wednesday 27 October 2010

The Moth Magazine

The Moth Magazine has its own website now.

It's a new arts and literature magazine launched last June. Great list of writers and wonderful artists.
And now they're on to issues 2 and 3 and are asking for submissions.

The website is finally up and running. If you'd like to sample a few poems and stories, or to purchase copies of the magazine, then please visit

Tuesday 26 October 2010

Dermot Bolger for National Novel Writing Month

The lovely Dermot Bolger will be at the Irish Writers’ Centre on Friday 29th October at 2pm to kick-start National Novel Writing Month 2010. 12 contestants will be awarded the opportunity to participate in a free 2 hour Novel Writing workshop with him. They will then be opening up the centre to the 12 individuals Monday to Friday for the month of November, offering a writing space and facilities.

If you're interested, send an email or letter to the Irish Writers’ Centre with 100 words stating why they believe you should be chosen . They're looking for aspiring and established writers to partake. The winning candidates will be chosen by a panel of judges made up of staff members and tutors of the Irish Writers’ Centre.

Submissions should be sent with contact emails and telephone numbers to
Closing date: 26th October 2010

For more information about National Novel Writing Month visit:

Monday 25 October 2010

Office Haiku for the Poetry Bus

Some of these Office Haiku were published in the Night and Day Anthology (New Island 2008) available here.

Here are no seasons –
we wear the same clothes year round,
watch weather through glass

Connor wants Mark’s job,
Mark’s more than a match for Niamh
Niamh’s soft on Connor

Health and Safety bleat -
walk don’t run, hold the hand rail
don’t fall and sue us

Maria comes in -
we stop googling cheap breaks
change screens to spreadsheets

Warm, stuffy meeting
broken air conditioning
blasts chill as a fridge

Cathal winks at me
chats up the girls in QA
we’ll do all he asks

There’s no clock in here
shadows crawl by my notepad
motes in sunlight shaft

Sunshine at lunchtime
we slip from shadowed buildings
winter pale faces

What a wasted day -
the afternoon spent fixing
the broken morning

Evening’s clock hand crawls
minute to dawdled minute
time treacles to five

The sun shines all day -
clouds roll in from Dublin Hills
by five it’s raining

Luke waits in the rain
dreaming of his driving test
until the bus comes

More bloddy links to bloody meetings here.

Crawshaw Prize for Poetry Collection

Salt were in financial trouble earlier in the year and launched a 'Just One Book' campaign that appeared to be very successful in getting readers and writers to buy just one book from them. They are the UK largest publisher of poetry and short stories.

Salt have a good reputation. They often have a collection or two on the Forward Prize list. This year Three Salt poets shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre Prize and Siân Hughes won it. She was previously short listed for her First Collection called The Missing and longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award.

Deadline: 31 October 2010

Read the Crawshaw Prize Conditions: No previous collection published.
65-70 pages. (yerk!) But it's not a first collection competition.

Entrants must permanently reside in the UK & Ireland, the USA, or Australia & New Zealand.

Manuscripts must include a table of contents and a list of acknowledgments for poems previously published. The first page must include a biographical note of not more than 80 words. Your name, address, phone number and email address should appear on the title page of your manuscript.

The Crashaw Prize is judged by members of the Board of Salt Publishing. Manuscripts are not read anonymously. Manuscripts may be screened by Salt staff.

Send by email only. See the website.

Fee: £10 (down from £18 last year, maybe they didn't get enough submissions)

2009 Winners

* Nathan Hoks, Reveilles
* Andrew Pidoux, Year of the Lion
* Nick Potamitis, The Book of Night Terrors
* Jonty Tiplady, Zam Bonk Dip
* Ryan van Winkle, Tomorrow, We Will Live Here
* Anna Woodford, Birdhouse

Sunday 24 October 2010

Interesting Links

Yes another post with interesting links (at last for me)

Take your pick:

Spoken word/Open Mic nights prove very popular in Nairobi, Kenya from The Entrepreneur

Sound advice from the tremendously bubbly and funny Meg Cabot on how to put your bullying experience to good use. Plus a very funny childhood diary youtube episode.

Poetry school workshops available online and to download here.

Top10 Fictinoal Feminist Icons here.  Who would be on your list.

This suits our current needs.  Why I love Peanuts

Friday 22 October 2010

Readers' Day

Readers Day from South Dublin Libraries is on Saturday November 13th in the Maldron Hotel, Tallaght.  

Lunch will be available for €10 on the day, and also the Hotel has offered a special rate of €69 for B&B for either a double or a single room….so if you fancy making a night of it!

The line-up is: Peter Sheridan, Dermot Healy, Arlene Hunt, June Considine, John Lonergan, Padraig J Daly and Sheila O’Flanagan.  

Booking lines will be open from 10am on Wednesday 27th October and you can book online at or by ringing 086-0492815.  

They’d really appreciate if you could book online if you can, as last year the phone got pretty clogged up with all the calls!  To book online, you just need your name and email address – and if you’ll be booking for somebody else, you’ll need their email address too.

9.30am - 10.00am Registration in Lobby
10.00am - 10.10am Introduction
10.10am – 10.40am Padraig J Daly
10.40am – 11.20am Dermot Healy
11.20am - 11.30am Coffee Break
11.35am – 12.10pm Arlene Hunt
12.10pm – 12.45pm John Lonergan
12.45pm – 2.00pm Lunch (available in Hotel for €10)
2.00pm – 2.50pm Sheila O’Flanagan & June Considine
3.00pm – 3.45pm Peter Sheridan One Man Show
For more information on the authors and on the event, please see here where they have a brochure.

Thursday 21 October 2010

This is what it's like sometimes trying to organise the Poetry Divas.

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Brownbread Mix Tapes Hits Waterford

The World -Famous, talked about in Parisien nightclubs evening organised by the World -Famous, talked about in Parisien nightclub toilets Kalle is going to Waterford. Watch Out!

For one night only on Oct 31st, Dublin’s premier monthly arts night, the brownbread mixtape, is coming to Downes Bar for the Imagine Arts Festival in Waterford!

Each brownbread mixtape show has a theme. We invite the best contemporary Irish poets, m...usicians and comedians to perform. They do a performance related to the theme. We all have loads of fun. Simple as that.

The theme for this unique brownbread mixtape show at the Imagine Festival will be “Imagination” and we have a truly stellar lineup of artists on the night>


Elder Roche |

Elder is a true musical poet who has shared the stage with many of Ireland's best, including Damien Rice, Paddy Casey and Damien Dempsey. His slapping grooves and roots overtones have seen his concerts gain a legendary, almost cult status. Elder recently released his magnificent debut album “Nobody Knows” to huge critical acclaim, with reviewers likening him to legends like Tom Waits and David Bowie. We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Elder’s deft and delicate piano songs to the brownbread mixtape stage. Get ready to hear a real troubadour at the peak of his powers.

“Manly vocals and powerful storytelling songs bring to mind the genius of Leonard Cohen” - News of the World

Pearse McGloughlin |

Pearse hails originally from Sligo and last year he released his debut album "Busy Whisper" to huge critical acclaim. The album offers beautifully haunting songs of forgotten moments and quiet reflection. Dreamy and atmospheric, ghostly but tender, Busy Whisper explores the themes of memory and longing, and has an organic aesthetic reminiscent of Grand Salvo or Red House Painters. Busy Whisper made many prestigious ‘Best Albums of 2009’ lists while the video for ‘Ways to Kill a Werewolf’ won an IMTV Award in the Best Male Video category. Pearse performed at the recent Hard Working Class Heroes Festival and recorded a 2FM session earlier this year. This year has also seen him tour in Ireland, Spain and France, while also finding the time to record a batch of new songs for his highly anticipated upcoming EP. the brownbread mixtape is delighted to bring Pearse’s finely crafted songwriting to the stage. Knockout songs from an immense talent.

"An immediately engaging performer, whose natural demeanour and soft-spoken asides offer little indication as to the extent of his talent, both as a musician and songwriter" - Art and Soul UK

EleventyFour |

EleventyFour came into the world backwards and has done things in her own way ever since. She drove her stolen forklift onto the Dublin music scene in 2008 and since then has built a loyal following. Jim Carroll picked her as one of his 5 Future Sounds in The Irish Times 'The Ticket'. Since then she has received oodles of radio airplay and recorded an acoustic session for the Green and Live show on Limerick’s Live 95FM. The brownbread mixtape is excited to bring EleventyFour’s inimitably charming tunes to the stage. She is quirky, cool and her stage banter is warmer than a yuletide fire.

''...cute as a button Kimya Dawson-like songs..." - Jim Carroll, The Irish Times


Stephen James Smith |

Stephen is a remarkable performance poet and a bit of a legend in Dublin. Not only is he a former Cúirt International Literary Festival Grand Slam Poetry Champion, he is also the MC and organiser of the excellent weekly Glór Sessions in the International Bar. Last year he proudly represented Ireland at the Vilenica Literary Festival in Slovenia and is currently recording an EP of Irish poems with musician Enda Reilly. Stephen is a truly hypnotic presence onstage and is one of our most popular past performers at the brownbread mixtape. Poetry that rages far from the page.

"Stephen James Smith is a ball of hydrogen gas that should be pumped into every household across the land. He knocks seven shades of shite out of all the usual “birds and bees, whey and cheese” nonsense you find at poetry readings" - Jinx Lennon


The Brownbread Players |

Our very own hilarious sketch troupe will write and perform original funny skits and sketches on the theme of the night. The Brownbread Players include well-known television, radio and film actors Sean McDonagh, Eva Bartley and Gus McDonagh, as well as chancer Kalle Ryan.


Barring any technical hitches, we will be broadcasting LIVE ON D'INTERNET here>

We will be having our legendary RAFFLE with highy desirable and coveted prizes

And you can expect lots of other cool surprises and silliness

Monday 18 October 2010

Poem for the Poetry Bus

NanU is driving this week and asked us to change writing location.
The others are here:

I wrote this one in Rochdale. It's the only poem I've ever written in Rochdale. It's the only poem I've written in the whole of Lancashire.


Jack has accepted me as part of his pack.
He smells of carpet offcuts left on the midden.

He greets me with a no nonsense sniff of the crotch
and leans in close, though the kitchen chair is only made for one.

Outside, we are never more than ten yards from a tennis ball,
some split like a dead rat, some with vestiges of yellow.

His eyes glisten with a passion; all he wants,
all he seems to live for, is this moment.

I pick up a ball. He is instantly alert,
intent on my hand, the slightest movement and he’s off.

I thwack it as far as I’m able, down the far field;
he catches, brings it back, I throw, he fetches, brings it back

I overarm, he retrieves, brings it back,
I hurl, he loses it, finds it, brings it back.

His face, his grubby beard, his black nose
his eyes, his big dark eyes. This is what thanks looks like.

The Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize

From the effervescent Women Rule Writer blog.

The Munster Literature Centre is pleased to announce an international poetry prize for single poem, named in honour of Gregory O'Donoghue, a late Irish poet long associated with the Centre. Website here.

Prizes: 1st Prize €1000, publication in Southword and a trip to Cork Ireland (international writers note!).
2nd Prize €500 publication in Southword
3rd Prize €250 publication in Southword
Ten runners-up to be published in Southword and receive €30 publication fee.

Note Southword is now an online publication.

Deadline: Tuesday December 15th 2009

Judge: Leanne O'Sullivan who will read each and every entry herself, which is a positive.

Fee: €5 per poem or €20 per batch of five.

Previous winners in Southword here.

Sunday 17 October 2010

Frances MacManus Short Story Award

Finally got the low down on this annual competition thanks to @finkeegan.

Deadline: 31st December 2010

Write for radio - lots of dialogue doesn't work too well but you can travel into space, into a human intestine, underwater, New York 1880, Hawaii 2110, Kenya 3000 BC, Troy 500 BC etc etc.

Prizes of €3,000, €2,000 and €1,000 will be awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd winning stories respectively. The winners and all of the shortlisted stories will be broadcast on RTE Radio 1.

See the website here.

Do listen to previous winners to see what sort of thing gets shortlisted.

Fee: Free

One story only within the range of 1,800 to 2,000 words.

Open to people born or normally resident in Ireland.

Judges: John MacKenna, Molly McCluskey, Alan Titley.

Saturday 16 October 2010

Nighthawks for Oxfam

I'm posting this because these are some good guys and it's a good cause but Honest-to-God, are they plain scared of women? pschht

On Saturday, October 30th, Nighthawks will be putting on a very special one-off show at the Project Arts Centre in order to raise funds for OXFAM Ireland. It's a great line-up, and a great cause, so buy your tickets early in order to avoid disappointment.

Tickets cost €17.50 (€15 conc). And with every ticket you get a FREE copy of the brand new Nighthawks' OXFAM EP (track listing below).

Tickets can be booked here

Project Arts Centre
Temple Bar
Dublin 2

Thomas Walsh (with Tosh Flood)
Thomas Walsh is one of the best songwriters Ireland has ever produced. He has been writing classic pop songs for well over a decade, under the name of Pugwash, and in recent years has also become well known for his work with Neil Hannon in The Duckworth Lewis Method. In fact, in April of this year, the DLM’s debut album was justly nominated for an Ivor Novello Award. Thomas will be joined on stage at the Project Arts Centre by Tosh Flood. Put simply – Tosh is one of the best guitarists you’ll ever see. His playing on albums bySaville and Pugwash is so good it has been known to inspire tears of admiration from Alex Chilton statues throughout the world! Fact!

Damian Clark
Damian Clark is one of Australia’s top stand-up comics. Fortunately for us, he has been living in Ireland for the last few years, and has quickly become one of funniest stand-ups on the Irish circuit. Not only has he had a TV series on RTE with Andrew Stanley (I Dare Ya!),and played every major comedy venue in the country; but Damo has also found time to publish a book and run one of the best damn comedy clubs Dublin has ever seen. That’s right – check out the Comedy Shed every Monday night at 9pm. Only €5 in and always worth a look.

Those of you who attended Fiach’s recent headline gig at Whelan’s will know exactly what to expect from him at the Project Arts Centre on October 30th – “infectious melody hooks served with a beautifully expressive voice”. Fiach’s debut album, So I, was released earlier this year and received excellent reviews. He has built up an impressive reputation for his live performances, and when the legendary Ray Davies recently toured Ireland, Fiach was immediately chosen to support him. Now that’s got to tell you something about how good Fiach is! It’s no wonder that his fans include the likes of Eddi Reader and Mary Black.

Enda Reilly and Stephen James Smith
Stephen James Smith is a top performance poet. And Enda Reilly is a top singer-songwriter. “And when they met... it was murder!” Their fantastic interpretation of Yeats’ ‘September 1913’ is the first track on the new OXFAM EP – and that track alone makes that EP essential for your record collection. Enda Reilly performs every Monday night in Bewley’s Café Theatre with The Lazy Band. And Stephen James Smith runs the excellent Glor Sessions every Monday night at the International Bar on Wicklow Street. Both of those events make Dublin a much richer city! Go and check them out.

Totally Wired
Totally Wired are Lorcan Hughes and Emmet Quinn. They’ve been performing together for over a year now and have recently been selected for regular slots on RTE TV’s Republic of Telly. Their songs are sharp, intelligent and funny; and, not surprisingly, they are former finalists of the prestigious Bulmers Stand-Up Comedy Competition. The new OXFAM EP contains their forthcoming ‘hit’ song – ‘Luke, Don’t Kiss Your Sister’. It really is the best song ever written about Star Wars. Nothing else comes close.

Trevor Browne
It’s hard to believe that Trevor Browne did his first ever stand-up gig in June 2009. It’s not that we’re calling the man a liar… it’s just that he’s made so much progress in such a short time… it’s feckin’ sickening! I mean in the last year alone Trevor has played gigs at key venues such as the Laughter Lounge in Dublin and the Stand in Scotland – and now the Comedy Store in Manchester has invited him to put on his very own headline show! And, as if that wasn’t enough, Trevor has also somehow managed to support his comic hero, the genius Wilson Dixon – as well as performing at the Flat Lake Festival and appearing on both of the OXFAM EPs. Buy shares in Trevor Browne now. In five years’ time he’ll be running the planet.

Colm Keegan
Colm Keegan is a poet that can stop a room. We’re not sure how he does it – but he does it. And we’re definitely not here to praise him! Christ – no! We’ll leave that honour to the great Jinx Lennon who reviewed Electric Picnic 2010 like this – “some top stuff, but best thing seen all weekend was Colm Keegan. Poet. Great f*cking images. Watch out for this lad.” You have been warned.

Should’ve Gone To Lourdes
Should’ve Gone To Lourdes is a short comic play written and directed by Stephen Kennedy, and performed by Gus McDonagh (BRIAN) and Dylan McDonough (CHRIS). (This play was originally given a rehearsed reading at the Project Arts Centre, in April 2010, and Washington DC, in June 2010, in association with Fishamble Theatre Company and ADI.) The Irish Times called this play “an hilarious dialogue between two brothers, one a wheelchair user, set in a brothel in Amsterdam”. Catch it now before it cleans up at the 2011 Tony Awards!!!

Show starts at 8pm sharp. It will end at 10.30pm (approx) and there will be one interval.

Nighthawks' SECOND OXFAM EP. Track Listing:

1 – ‘September 1913’ - Enda Reilly and Stephen James Smith
2 – ‘The Last Day of Summer’ - The Citizen
3 – ‘Do You Know What Really Annoys the Arse Off Me?’ - Kevin McGahern
4 – ‘Luke, Don’t Kiss Your Sister’ - Totally Wired
5 – ‘The John Denver Song’ - Trevor Browne
6 – ‘Cheek, Cheek, Chin and Nose’ - Colm Keegan

Friday 15 October 2010

Poetry Collection Award - The aim of this award is to provide a platform for new voices in poetry.

Prize: £100 and The winning author has his/her poetry collection published with Cinnamon Press. We also publish an anthology of the best poems submitted and entry includes a copy of the winners' anthology. We have commissioned several other collections as a result of being short-listed.

Entrants for the poetry categories should not previously have had a full poetry collection published.

10 poems up to 40 lines

Deadline: 30th November 2010
Fee: £16 (this includes a copy of the winners anthology for the poet and short story categories, worth £8.99)

This press is not lightweight. They've had a collection shortlisted for the Forward Prize.

Guardian Travel Writing Competition

Ever fancied yourself as a travel writer?

Guardian third annual Readers' Travel Writing Competition invite you to write a 500-word feature about your 2010 holiday.

There are 8 categories:
A big adventure;
City break;
Our family holiday;
Green/responsible travel;
UK holiday;
Hotel review;

The 8 winning stories will be published in a special issue of Travel in November, along with some runners-up. The eight winners will also receive a fantastic holiday, which you will get to write up as a feature to be published in Travel next year. The judges will be looking for lively, personal stories that evoke a sense of place, reveal something new, and contain useful details, such as accommodation, attractions, restaurants and so on.

Your feature must not have been published before in any other printed publication or website. You can only enter one story per category.

Entries should be emailed to, specifying the category you are entering and your name in the subject bar. Your email must include your address and phone number.

The deadline is 23.59pm on 24 October 2010.

Unfortunately you need a UK address: open to UK residents aged 18 and over

Thursday 14 October 2010

Poets to Check Out - Maya Angelou

Still I Rise - don't you love her laugh?
Apparently Kanye West has this tattooed on his arm, via Baroque in Hackney.

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Iota Shots Poetry Pamphlet Prizes

A new prize for shorter poetry pamphlets has been launched by Templar Poetry and Iota Poetry magazine, the Iota Shots Pamphlet prizes.

Deadline: 14 Nov 2010

The three prizes offer the opportunity to submit shorter poetry submissions: between twelve and sixteen pages of poetry with no more
than forty lines of text per page, excluding the title of the poem and stanza breaks.

An Iota Shot will be whatever you make it as a poet. It might be a series of sonnets, haiku, a sequence, a single narrative poem, a mini-epic or a short collection on a theme; it is an opportunity to produce an innovative short piece of work.

The three new pamphlets, judged by Templar Poetry Editor Alex McMillen, will be published in the high quality format of Templar pamphlets and the winning authors will receive a generous 100 copies to sell and to promote their work along with a cash prize. All who submit will receive a complimentary Templar Pamphlet.

The three winning writers will be notified early in January 2011 and Iota Shots will be published in May 2011.

Postal Submission Fee: £14.50
Online Submission Fee: £15.50

The details of how to submit are available on the Iota website

Tuesday 12 October 2010

Guardian Poetry Workshop

This Month's poetry workshop on the Guardian website is from Katharine Towers.

She asks you to look at and think about furniture.

The OED defines furniture as "the movable articles that are used to make a room or building suitable for living or working in." So far, so uninspiring. But perhaps all the better for that as the starting point for a poem ...

Monday 11 October 2010

Washington Square Review

The Washington Square Review is a nationally-distributed literary journal publishing fiction, non-fiction and poetry by emerging and established writers, edited and produced biannually by the students of the NYU Graduate Creative Writing Program; they are actively looking for writers outside the US so go ahead and blow them away with some red hot submissions.

Website here. They say they are currently working to give international writers greater access to an American audience

to, with the subject line “International Submission.” They may also be mailed to their office: Washington Square, attn: International Editor, 58 W 10th St, New York, NY 10011, USA. Submissions must be previously unpublished work, and a maximum of 25 pages. 

Sunday 10 October 2010

Plough Poetry Prize

The Plough Prize has been going now for 8 years. Entries are invited in three categories:

- Open Poem (up to 40 lines)
- Short Poem (up to 10 lines)
- Poem for Children (length unrestricted)

Deadline: 31st October 2010

Judge: Daljit Nagra (cool!)

Fee: £4 per poem (£4.35 for email) £14 for 4 poems (email or post).

Prizes: 1st £500, 2nd £200, 3rd £100

Each entry should have an entry form.

Read the comments from last year's judges on the website.

Friday 8 October 2010

Beckett, Pinter and some guy whose name begins with M

There are some cool sounding readings at the Gate Theatre this weekend in Dublin. I love the Gate. They make an event out of everything.

Saturday at 4pm
Sunday at 6pm

€10 admission/ €5 Students

Central to the season will be a series of weekend readings which will feature excerpts from other works by the three playwrights. By presenting their writings side by side, these readings will highlight the symmetry and the relationship between the work while also exploring the playwrights' use of language.

Readings will be by the BPM Company and special guests.

A focus on the work of Beckett, Pinter, Mamet, featuring extracts from plays, prose and essays. (oh so it's Mamet...)

Andrea Corr
Charles Dance
Barry McGovern
Owen Roe
Andrew Whipp

To celebrate what would have been the playwright's 80th birthday, this session of readings will feature extracts from the prose, poetry and plays of Harold PINTER.
David Bradley
Ingrid Craigie
Charles Dance
Nick Dunning
Nigel Harman

Fab list of readers there.

Thursday 7 October 2010

National Poetry Day

The Poetry Ireland page for this year's National Poetry Day seems a bit empty. There are many more readings going on that are featured. Unfortunately in some places it's a case of wheel out the old familiars, no new names or innovation. Not the best way to increase exposure to contemporary poetry IMHO.

Antrim - (Seriously? Nothing in Antrim?)
Armagh - 7.30pm, Armagh City Library, Market Street, Armagh
The John Hewitt Society and Armagh City Chapter, in association with Poetry Ireland, present and All-Ireland Poetry Day Poetry Reading with Gráinne Tobin, whose second collection from Summer Palace Press, The Nervous Flyer's Companion, was published in May, and Iggy McGovern, whose new collection, Safe House, is due for publication by Dedalus Press in October.
For more information contact Armagh Libary on t 028 3752 4072 or e (booking is advised)

Carlow -

Cavan - 10.30 - 1pm, Johnston Central Library, Farnham Street, Cavan Town
Cavan County Arts Office presents a reading by poet Noel Monahan, winner of the 2001 Poetry Ireland / Seacat National award. For more information contact:

Cavan - 8pm, Chapter 1, Main Street
Meath/Cavan LitLab Writers Group present a poetry reading.

Clare - 7pm, Courthouse Gallery, Ennistymon

Salmon Press presents readings by Rita Ann Higgins, Mary Mullen, Susan Millar DuMars, Kevin Higgins, Mary Madec and Glenn Shea.

Cork - 8pm, Library Building, County Hall Campus, Carrigrohane Road, Cork
Cork County Library and Arts Service present a reading by poet John Montague. Montague was the first Ireland Professor of Poetry, and recently named as a recipient of the Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur. He has taught at UCD, the Sorbonne, and for many years at UCC. Montague has published nine collections of poetry including The Great Cloak (1978) and The Dead Kingdom (1984).

Derry - 2pm, Verbal Arts Centre, Stable Lane and Mall Wall, Bishop Street Within, Derry / Londonderry
The Verbal Arts Centre and Abridged Magazine present a joint celebration of All Ireland Poetry day from 2pm – 4pm at the Verbal Arts Centre. Gregory McCartney, editor of Abridged will be introducing readings from a selection of Abridged contributors, past and present.
Abridged Magazine is one of the leading Irish contemporary poetry/art publications and presents in each issue the best of local, national and international poets and artists. The magazine is unique in that the poetry and art are completely integrated and not merely illustrative. Each issue is themed and recent issues have been 'Time' and 'Absence'. The new issue 'Magnolia' is available now featuring Paul Muldoon amongst many others.

Donegal - 8ú, Tigh Hudaí Beag, Gaoth Dobhair
Filíocht agus ceol le scríbhneoirí agus ceoltóirí áitiúla. Scoth den litríocht agus an ceol. Soláistí curtha ar fáíl. Saor in aisce.

Down - Welcoming the Wild Geese event in Strangford (on the 9th though)

Dublin - 1.00pm, National Library of Ireland, 2 Kildare Street, D2
Poetry Ireland in association with the National Library presents a reading by Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, whose latest collection The Sun-fish won the 2010 Griffin Poetry Prize. Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin is a former editor of Poetry Ireland Review, and a founder and editor of Irish literary magazine Cyphers.

Fermanagh - 1pm, Higher Bridges Gallery, The Clinton Centre, Belmore St, Enniskillen
Fermanagh District Council presents poetry readings by Damian Smyth, poet and Head of Literature and Drama at the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, and Kevin Quinn, poet, critic, and director of the 'Talking Poetry' lecture programme.

Galway - Kevin Higgins and Máire Holmes in the chapel of University College Hospital Galway, starting at 11am. The reading is organised by Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust and for All Ireland Poetry Day every patient in the hospital (and in five other hosptials around the country too) will receive 'a Menu of Poems' with their breakfast which will feature 12 poems by 6 poets from each hospital's area

Kerry -

Kildare -

Kilkenny - 10am - 6pm, MacDonagh Junction, Kilkenny
Kilkenny County Council Arts Office presents Poethon - Poetry in the air on the square. A marathon of readings by poets Janet E Sahafi, Elinor Mountain, Frank Marshall, Michael Massey, Frances Cotter, Willie Joe Meally, Carmel Cummins and others of original poems and favourite works. The nearby Stone House bookshop will host a poetry book swap basket.

1.30pm, City Library, John’s Quay
Kilkenny County Library presents a reading by Mark Roper, former editor of Poetry Ireland Review, and winner of the 1992 Aldeburgh Poetry Prize, as well as readings from contributors to the library’s poetry project “Poets on Boards". 

Laois -

Leitrim - 8.30pm, THE DOCK, Carrick-on Shannon
Leitrim poet/playwright and radio presenter Vincent Woods will launch and introduce poets from the recently published anthology, Landing Places.  The anthology featrues sixty-six international poets who have made their homes in Ireland. The evening will feature poets who have published in Landing Places alongside new writing from immigrants and locals in Leitrim, some who have just completed a series of poetry workshops at The Dock with poet Alice Lyons.

Limerick -

Longford -

Louth - 1pm, DkIT Library Rooftop Garden Atrium, Dundalk IT
DkIT Library hosts a Lunchtime Garden Poetry reading, with the theme of ‘Transitions’. Those who want to read their own work or work by well-known poets and anyone is welcome to listen in.  

Drogheda Library, Stockwell St

Writer and poet Marie MacSweeney will read from her work at 1.30pm, and the Viaduct Bards host their own poetry session from 6.30 to 7.30pm.  

7.30pm,  Holy Trinity Heritage Centre, Carlingford

Jaki McCarrick, poet, playwright and fiction writer, will read from her work. McCarrick has published poetry in Poetry Ireland Review, Revival, Boyne Berries, Southword, Cyphers, Cathach, among many others. Her recent play Leopoldville, was short-listed for the Adrienne Benham Award, and selected by David Hare as a finalist in the 2010 Yale Drama Series Playwriting Competition; the play has also just won the 2010 Papatango New Writing Award. 

8.30pm,  McGeough’s, Roden Place, Dundalk
'Meitheal Open Mic' series, where all are welcome to sign up and read their poems alongside featured readers, The Poetry Divas. 

Mayo - 6.30pm, Mayo County Library, Castlebar

Mayo Arts Office & Mayo County Library present readings by Anne Le Marquand Hartigan and John F.Deane. For further information please contact Mayo Arts Office on 094 9024444 ext 7471/ 7558 or by e-mail

Meath - 7pm, Navan Library, Railway St
Meath County Council Library Service and the Meath Writers Circle presents a poetry open mic for readers to read their favourite poem. For more information contact 046-9021134 or by email

12pm, St Patrick’s Cathedral, Loman St, Trim
The Boyne Writers Group presents a poetry reading session, all are welcome to attend and read a favourite poem, a poem of their own, or just to listen to the readings.

5pm, Resource Centre, Carrick St, Kells
The Boyne Writers Group presents a poetry reading session, all are welcome to attend and read a favourite poem, a poem of their own, or just to listen to the readings.

Monaghan -

Offaly -

Roscommon -

Sligo - 1pm, Sligo Central Library, Stephen Street,
Sligo Central Library will present readings by Mary Branley, Macdara Woods and Dermot Healy

Tipperary - 8pm, County Museum, Clonmel, Co Tipperary

South Tipperary Arts Office and County Museum present an open-mic and networking event featuring guest poet Grace Wells. For further information contact Sally O’Leary, Arts Officer, South Tipperary County Council 052 6134565 or email

8pm, Lough Derg Yacht Club, Dromineer

Dromineer Literary Festival in association with North Tipperary Arts Office presents a reading by Dave Lordan.

Tyrone - 7.00pm, Strabane Library, Railway Road Strabane
Northern Ireland libraries service presents a reading with Maureen Boyle, winner of the 2007 Strokestown International Poetry Competition.

Waterford - 1.15pm, Waterford Regional Hospital
The Waterford Healing Trust in association with the Waterford City Council Arts Office presents a Menu of Poems featuring two poems by local poets that will be distributed on every breakfast tray in University Hospital Galway, St. Patricks Hospital, Waterford Regional Hospital, Adelaide and Meath Hospital and Naas General Hospital. At 1.15pm in the Church at Waterford Regional Hospital, poet Michael Coady will give a public poetry reading from his book One Another (Gallery Press, 2003), including the series The Place of Hurt and Healing about his experiences of being a patient in hospital. This simple project aims to provide a poetic reverie for patients in the course of their day in hospital. Anyone wishing to get a copy of the Menu of Poems should contact Mary Grehan on or phone 051 842664.

Westmeath -

Wexford - 10.45am, Wexford Town Library, McCauley's Carpark, Wexford
Wexford Town Library presents an open mic for anyone to read their favourite poem - as well as joining in the discussion led by 3 poems chosen by writer and teacher Niall McMonagle.

Wexford - 7pm, Wexford Town Library, McCauley's Carpark, Wexford
Wexford Town Library presents a poetry reading and discussion for reading circles, book clubs, poetry groups and friends. The evening, hosted by the Thursday Night Reading Circle, will feature poets with a Wexford connection.  

Wicklow -

Wednesday 6 October 2010

cafe writers open poetry competition 2010

Judge : Michael Symmons Roberts

Fee: £4 per poem; or £10 for 3 poems and £2 per poem thereafter

Deadline: 30th November 2010

Winner: £1000, Runner Up: £300, plus Five Commended Prizes of £50

Also £100 Norfolk Prize awarded to best poem from a permanent Norfolk resident.

Snailmail or online entry!

Website here

Tuesday 5 October 2010

Ragged Robin Poetry Competition

First prize - £300

Four runners-up prizes of £50

A selection of entries will be included in an anthology scheduled for publication in March 2011. Winners and authors of poems selected for the anthology will be personally notified before December 15th, 2010

Deadline: 31st October 2010
Fee: £3 per poem, £10 for 4 poems.
Free entry for one poem with the purchase of any Ragged Raven Poetry book. (This type of offer is a good idea, I think)

Snailmail only

Website here

Sunday 3 October 2010

The Poetry Bus Poem

The long lived Poetry Bus is driverless this weekend, but that doens't stop this legendary vehicle from taking to the virtual highroad.

Nanu is hosting here. The suggested, last minute themes were nothing, happiness and The Poetry Bus.

The conductor (remember when buses had conductors?)  is TFE.

This Poem has Actions

The wheels on the bus go round and round -
its weekly tour around the web
time zone to time zone, blog to blog,
wordpress or blogger, whatever, it stops.

The people on the bus stand up, sit down-
passengers spread across time zones
some board weekly, some more sporadic,
broadcasting their journeywork to join.

The conductor on the bus says 'Tickets please' -
words and photos, fireworks and boats,
themes and prompts jostle shoulder to shoulder,
clinging to the seatbacks as the bus lurches on.

The driver on the bus says 'Move along' -
with sonnets and ballads cheek to cheek,
villenelles jowl to jowl with rants,
haiku make room for free verse in the backseat.

The wipers on the bus go 'swish, swosh, swish' -
comments flow, phrases admired,
tweaks and suggestions made, personal experiences
inspire shared emotional support.

The horn on the bus says 'beep, beep, beep' -
time to get on board
for another weekend's world tour
of the infamous Poetry Bus.

and the wheels on the bus go round and round
all day long.

Poets to Check Out - Simon Armitage

I am a huge fan of Simon Armitage. I love his voice, his sense of humour, his slight nerdi-ness.

He was supposed to come to Dublin once to read and every poet I know was going. Then he got sick. some tropical disease or infestitation or something and he cancelled. I imagine what would have happened if he had come and read and infected the audience. All the poets in Ireland would have been infected. A whole generation, wiped out in one go.

Friday 1 October 2010

Sci Fi Novelists Take Note

The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now Prize. Transworld will offer the winning author a publishing contract with a £20,000 advance. See here for more details.

The award will be judged by the esteemed Sir Terry Pratchett, the wise Tony Robinson, the savvy Mike Rowley from Waterstone's and two members of the editorial team at Transworld Publishers (who are apparently neither wise nor esteemed nor even savvy)

Sir Terry says:

Anywhere but here, anywhen but now. Which means we are after stories set on Earth, although it may be an Earth that might have been, or might yet be, one that has gone down a different leg of the famous trousers of time (see the illustration in almost every book about quantum theory).

We will be looking for books set at any time, perhaps today, perhaps in the Rome of today but in a world where 2000 years ago the crowd shouted for Jesus Christ to be spared, or where in 1962, John F Kennedy's game of chicken with the Russians went horribly wrong. It might be one day in the life of an ordinary person. It could be a love story, an old story, a war story, a story set in a world where Leonardo da Vinci turned out to be a lot better at Aeronautics. But it won't be a story about being in an alternate Earth because the people in an alternate Earth don't know that they are; after all, you don't.

But this might just be the start. The wonderful Peter Dickinson once wrote a book that could convince you that flying dragons might have existed on Earth. Perhaps in the seething mass of alternate worlds humanity didn't survive, or never evolved — but other things did, and they would have seen the world in a different way. The possibilities are literally endless, but remember, it's all on Earth. Maybe the continents will be different and the climate unfamiliar, but the physics will be the same as ours. What goes up must come down, ants are ant-sized because if they were any bigger their legs wouldn't carry them. In short, the story must be theoretically possible on some version of the past, present or future of a planet Earth."

Entrants must be over 18, have no previous published full-length works of fiction and live in the UK, Ireland or the Commonwealth. Submissions should be emailed to:

Deadline: 31 December 2010