I’m delighted to announce the details of the 2020 Brewery Lane Writers’ Weekend. As ever we continue to bring you the best current writers and teachers of writing – this time the wonderfully accomplished duo of Lisa Harding and Alan McMonagle.
Booking is now open for this, Ireland’s most intimate writers’ weekend, where the focus is firmly on writers and writing, with a healthy dose of craic and conviviality to leaven the mix! Early bird offer is €160 until Fri. Jan 31st. A steal!! This event is strictly limited to 12 participants and there was a waiting list last year. For booking enquiries get in touch with me via the Contact page.
‘Every story has a beginning, a muddle, and an end.’ Philip Larkin
Introducing a mix of theory, writing prompts and group discussion, this weekend course will steer participants through the elements of writing effective fiction.
Referencing proven masters, Lisa Harding will focus on ‘Voice, Character and Dramatic Action’ in fiction, and Alan McMonagle will examine beginnings and endings; voice, tone and point-of-view; characterisation and dialogue; language and setting; and, of course, ‘the muddle’. We will also look at what fiction, both long and short, attempts to achieve, and apply prompt-based exercises to topics covered.
Lisa Harding is an actress, playwright and author. She has performed at the Abbey, the Gate, the Lyric, the Royal Court and on RTE, among others. Plays have been performed at the Project, Battersea Arts Centre and Theatre 503 in London. Short stories have been published in The Winter Papers, Bath short story anthology and the Dublin Review, alongside being shortlisted in various competitions and placed a winner in the inaugural Doolin Writers’ Weekend.
Harvesting, her first novel won the Kate O’Brien award, was nominated for best newcomer at the Irish Book Awards 2017 and shortlisted for the Kerry Group Prize 2018. It has been translated into French by Gallimard press. A screen adaptation is currently underway with the director of the Derry Girls, Michael Lennox. Her new novel, BRIGHT BURNING THINGS is to be published by Bloomsbury in spring 21.
Alan McMonagle has written for radio and published two collections of short stories (Liar Liar and Psychotic Episodes). His first novel, Ithaca, was published by Picador in 2017 and a second novel (Laura Cassidy’s Walk Of Fame) will appear in March 2020. Alan has a MA in Writing from NUI Galway, and has delivered courses and facilitated writing workshops at the Irish Writers’ Centre, Listowel Writers’ Week, the City Literary Institute in London and many others. He lives in Galway. (www.alanmcmonagle.com)
For booking enquiries get in touch with me via the Contact page.
Cancellation 4 weeks or more prior to the course start date – full refund (less a 10% admin fee)
Cancellation between 4 weeks to 1 week prior to the course start date – 50% refund
Cancellation less than 7 days prior to start – NO REFUND
Brewery Lane Writers’ Weekend is brought to you with the assistance of Tipperary County Council.
I will be facilitating a very special one-day writing workshop in Brewery Lane Theatre on Sunday, 26th June. If you feel it’s time to take a day for you and your writing, and you would like to be a participant, then let me know through the contact page. There will be a maximum of 12 participants.
The emphasis will be on trusting your pen, generating first drafts and identifying the strengths of each others writing. Everyone will finish the day with pages of writing they didn’t know they had in them and will have experienced the pleasures of writing. That’s a promise.
‘Write about what you don’t know about what you know’ (Eudora Welty)
Art exhibition by Trudi Doyle in the kiln area of Brewery Lane Theatre
My workshops, Writing Changes Lives, will start again on Saturday, 23rd January for 8 weeks in the tearoom in Brewery Lane Theatre, Carrick-on-Suir. I like to keep the emphasis on playfulness and discovery, the essence of creativity – it doesn’t matter if you are beginning, beginning again, or at some other stage in your writing life, I guarantee you will experience a renewal of your creative self.
If you would like to join me or to find out more please get in touch with me through the contact page. We will start at 10.30am each Saturday in the tea-room and the fee is, as usual, €150. If you know of anyone who might be interested please feel free to spread the word.
I will, as always, be basing my work on the Amherst Writers and Artists’ philosophy – that ‘the teaching of craft can be done without damage to a writer’s original voice or artistic self-esteem’.
‘Writing has brought me up from underground. I’ve been my own Orpheus.’ Nuala O’Faolain
Join writers Selina Guinness and Katie Donovan for the 2016 Brewery Lane Writers’ Weekend. The dates are: Friday, 1st April, Saturday, 2nd April and Sunday, 3rd April, the weekend after Easter. This is Ireland’s most intimate writers’ weekend, limited to 12 participants, where writers get the opportunity to work with some of the best writers and teachers of writing in Ireland. Participants gain insights into the practice and craft of writing through group workshops, one to one tutorials and time for writing.
Here is what Nessa O’Mahony, one of our fabulous duo of tutors at the 2015 event, has written about the impact on her of attending a workshop with Katie Donovan: ‘Katie Donovan will forever have my gratitude for being the first professional writer to tell me that I had something worth developing – my own voice.’
The early-bird fee for the weekend is €160, but this must be paid by Friday, 5th February. This fee includes all workshops and tutorials plus lunch on Friday and Saturday. For payments later than this the full fee of €175 will apply, but please note that the weekend will fill on a first come, first paid basis. If you need accommodation for the weekend the Carraig Hotel is offering a special deal to participants.
For booking and payment details please get in touch with me through the Contact page.
Overall winner of the poetry competition Grace Wells, with adjudicator Richard Hayes, WIT (centre) and David Ryan, Dungarvan, whose poem ‘Another Blue Boy’ was Highly Commended in the Emerging Poet Category. Photo courtesy of The Nationalist, Clonmel
Photo courtesy of The Nationalist, Clonmel
Mary O’Gorman, Clonmel, being congratulated by Richard Hayes. Mary’s poem ‘A Poem’s Thoughts’ was Highly Commended in the overall category.
Ladies in Red! Kate Gordon, Catherine Lowry-O’Neill and Mary Clancy enjoying the launch night. Photo courtesy The Nationalist, Clonmel
Prizewinners all! From left, Patricia Cantwell, Clonmel – winner of the Emerging Poet Category, Bríd Kervick, Templeorum – Highly Commended in the Emerging Poet Category, Mary O’Gorman, Clonmel – Highly Commended in the Overall Category and Danny Harty, Comeragh College – winner of the Schools’ Category. Photo courtesy of The Nationalist, Clonmel
Eileen Acheson, Clonmel enjoying a chat with writer Michael Coady. Photo courtesy of The Nationalist, Clonmel
Danny Harty with his proud sisters Chloe and Josie. Photo courtesy of The Nationalist, Clonmel
Dave Lordan making a definite point about the writing of Flash Fiction, although Mary Marron, Dungarvan, doesn’t seem to be taking him too seriously.
Eileen Acheson, Clonmel & Geraldine Mernagh, Kilkenny busy at Dave Lordan’s workshop.
Kate Gordon, Karl Sandison and Eileen Acheson at Dave Lordan’s Flash Fiction workshop
It was a busy, busy but very enjoyable weekend and thanks to everyone who made it so. If you would like to see a sample of what Shem Caulfield presented at his seminar on Saturday morning, click here. After being in Shem’s company for a couple of hours, listening to him and seeing his beautiful images, for me, and for the others who attended, a gate will never again be just a gate. There really is an epic in the detail!
I will be starting my 8 week series of writing workshops in Brewery Lane Theatre, Carrick-on-Suir on Saturday, 1st February 2014. This is traditionally regarded as the first day of spring – an auspicious day to sow some seeds of creativity.
As always, everyone who participates will generate fresh first drafts during the workshop. If you wish to further develop your writing and learn how to bring it to a new level there will also be the option of bringing a later draft of a manuscript for response to myself and the group. The method I use to support writers and their writing is the Amherst Writers and Artists method as developed by Pat Schneider and described in her book ‘Writing Alone and With Others’. Writers learn not only about craft but also experience the pleasure and satisfaction of writing, without damage to the creative ego of the writer.
After my workshops you should feel encouraged as a writer and always feel more like writing. Read what others have said here. If you would like to know more or to book your place please get in touch with me through the contact page.
Now in its 17th year, Waterford County Council’s Arts Office is pleased to announce that it is currently accepting entries for the Molly Keane Creative Writing Award.
The late writer lived, until her death in 1996, in Ardmore, Co. Waterford. Her first ten novels and four plays were published under the pseudonym M.J. Farrell. In 1981 ‘Good Behaviour’ became a publishing sensation for which she was short listed for the prestigious Booker Prize. To celebrate this rich literary life, the County Waterford Arts Office, by kind permission of the Keane family, is inviting entries for a previously unpublished short story to a maximum of 2000 words. There is no entry fee, no age limit and no restriction on the subject matter. A prize of €500 will be awarded to the winner at a special ceremony during the IMMRAMA Literary Festival in Lismore, Co. Waterford in June 2014.
The closing date for receipt of entries is 12 noon on
Friday 14th March 2014.
Full details and an entry form can be downloaded from www.waterfordcoco.ie or by contacting the Arts Office on 058-41416.
Dawn Sewell McKeever has written an interesting essay in Glimmer Train on becoming a writer, noting how often in her life she was sidetracked from writing.
Maybe you have been sidetracked from your writing just once too often. Is it time to make a definite commitment to put pen to paper? If you are living in the south-east my Saturday morning writing workshops will start on 1st February in Brewery Lane Theatre, Carrick-on-Suir. These workshops are informed and inspired by the work of Pat Schneiderand are suitable for anyone beginning or beginning again to write. You can get in touch with me here.
We’ve well and truly crossed into 2014 – decorations are down, chocs are history – and now here are dates and details that should be of interest to all you writers in or around the south-east:
On Sat. 1st February I will be starting my spring series of creative writing workshops in Brewery Lane Theatre. These will run over 8 Saturday mornings, from 10.30am to 1pm. Each week you are guaranteed to make personal writing discoveries and to learn about the craft of writing while in the stimulating company of other writers. Do get in touch with me asap through the contact page here if you would like to be part of this group, booking is essential.
The monthly poetry nights in Brewery Lane Theatre resume on Friday, 31st January at 8.15pm. This event is open to anyone who wants to enjoy the pleasures of poetry – just turn up on the night, it’s a friendly group. The theme for January is, appropriately, ‘New’. And well done to all the writers who contributed to the 2013 poetry pamphlet, ‘Tidings’, with proceeds going to Carrick River Rescue.
And plans are well advanced for the (now) annual Brewery Lane Writers’ Weekend. This year’s event will take place over the weekend of April 11th, 12th, 13th and will include workshops with Dave Lordan on Flash Fiction, a seminar with Shem Caulfield called ‘The Epic is in the Detail’ and, of course, the 2014 Brewery Lane Poetry Competition, which will again have a special category for emerging writers. This year’s competition will be judged by Richard Hayes, Head of the School of Humanities, Waterford Institute of Technology. I will be posting further details of the Writers’ Weekend when booking opens.
And if all of that doesn’t give you the urge to crack open your notebook straightaway and grab a pen I don’t know what would!
Internashional Film Shtar. Retired. Enjoysh making shoup & sharing reshipesh. Living quietly in a modesht penthoushe in Shcotland'sh capital, Edinburgh, with Mrsh C. No offenshe intended, none taken (moshtly). Here endeth the lesshon.