The well known Donegal playwright, Frank McGuinness, has published his first novel with Brandon press, see here He is currently writer in residence in UCD. His novel is called Arimathea and is available from Brandon (imprint of O'Brien Press).
Many years ago, a story of mine 'Nightcall' was published in The Sunday Tribune, and then entered in The Hennessy Awards under the First Fiction category (2005). I was delighted to attend the award ceremony in The Four Season's Hotel, and Frank McGuinness was one of the judges along with Ciaran Carty and Ronan Bennett. Frank was kind enough to give each story a short and pithy critique as he introduced the shortlist for First Fiction. I tried desperately to remember his lines about my story. I rhymed them in my head over and over, and swore to myself that I would remember them forever. Being plagued with a pretty terrible memory - I really need to write things down - I lost those words before the end of the night. Lesson: always carry your pen, even if it means writing on a napkin. I didn't win anything that night, but I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
The Sunday Tribune is gone, and my Sundays are not the same since, but New Irish Writing is alive and well at The Independent on Saturday. You can still send poetry and short stories, as long as you have no collection/novel published or pending. It publishes chosen work once a month, on the last Saturday, and the monthly winners are eligible for The Hennessy Awards - a great night, believe me.
Stories (2,000 words max) and poems (6 max). Entries (with stamped addressed envelope) to Ciaran Carty, New Irish Writing, The Irish Independent, 27-32 Talbot Street, Dublin 1, along with name, phone number and email address. Stories and poems may also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org Please indicate previous publications, if any. The page is open to all Irish writers, or writers normally resident in Ireland