Friday, 22 August 2014

Happy First Birthday to the GRW Blog

Today is the first anniversary of our public blog for the Garden Room Writers Donegal. Thank you so much to all of our readers out there, and to the members of our writing group.

Here's to many more years of reading and writing and sharing!  

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

North West Words Arts Night August 2014

Next week is the last of the month, so that means North West Words Arts Night on the final Thursday 28th August. It's at 8pm in Cafe Blend, Letterkenny with a line up of writers in both poetry and fiction, and  an open mic afterwards. There's also music too as usual.  

The featured writers are Edward O'Dwyer and Lisa Burkitt. See North West Words Website or Facebook North West Words

Friday, 15 August 2014

North West Words Magazine seeks submissions

North West Words (NWW) is a voluntary run organisation that promotes the arts in the north west of Ireland. It has been running a very enjoyable arts night in Cafe Blend, Letterkenny since 2010, and has just finished its second year of the North West Words Writing Weekend. It also runs both adult and school poetry competitions.  Two of the members of Garden Room Writers, Maureen Curran and Nick Griffiths, are on its organising team. 

NWW has had a hardcopy magazine for a while, but has very recently moved to a softcopy and online version in addition to launching a new website. They have a Facebook site and the newly launched website    

The new magazine issue 1 is available on the website, have a look here  It contains poetry, fiction, non fiction, feature articles and an interview with the acclaimed writer Jon McGregor. I'm proud to say I have a non fiction piece included in Issue 1. It really is a beautifully produced magazine. Well done to the editors Maureen Curran, Eamonn Bonner and Denise Blake, and all the contributors. 

And, now for more good news. NWW magazine seeks submissions of  poetry (3 max.), fiction (2000 words max.), and non fiction for issue 2. See further details within issue 1 of the magazine or here

Deadline for submissions to issue 2 is 01st September. So send those lovely poems, stories and memoir pieces to as soon as possible, and good luck

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

NUI Maynooth Summer Writing Institute

For a week at the end of July, I had the good fortune to attend the first ever Summer Writing Institute at NUI Maynooth. It was organised by the university Writing Centre at Maynooth, and so a huge thank you from me to Alison Farrell. 

The facilitators for the week were two staff members from BAWP (Bay Area Writing Project) University of California, Berkeley, Greta Vollmer and Kirstin Land; so, more and massive thanks to these two women. They have years of experience in both the teaching of writing, and in community building towards the teaching of writing at all educational levels. 

Thursday, 7 August 2014

August - some submission opportunities here                   

Gee, I can't believe it's late summer already. So, what the are the writing opportunities that might tempt you this month? Here are a few ideas and deadlines.

The Stony Thursday Book - a poetry journal published annually, and this year's deadline is 08th August.  For more details see here
Abridged - accepts poetry and art for themed issues, the current call is for 0-37 Torquemada. The deadline is 31st August, see their website  for further details. 

Saturday, 2 August 2014

In response to a comment after the poetry review in today's Irish Times

what women write is of the body
the body we toil to preserve and to serve
up, we write of Sile na Gigs
the body familiar, the body of history and hysteria

we write of our genitals these days,
of our lovers’ too
we dare to speak its name
we dare to write it white

we write of domestic bliss and of love
we strive for the universal in the local
the shelter of words when the sky is falling
for the secular prayer to fill the void

while children are dying in Gaza and maybe 
we could take our hands out of our knickers
and write about expelling Israel’s ambassador
or the sale of the country’s most beautiful theatre

or the consultants getting a pay-rise
but sure who'd read it anyway
now that books are dead?

and a girl in a workshop last week
had it on good authority poetry isn’t far behind them.