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West Cork Literary Festival announces 2014 Workshop programme

Monday, 2nd December, 2013 10:57am
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West Cork Literary Festival announces 2014 Workshop programme

Nell Regan, Artistic Director of the West Cork Literary Festival.

Details of the Workshop Programme for the 2014 West Cork Literary Festival have been announced and feature an impressive roster of writers who will be facilitating three and five day writing workshops at next year’s Festival, which runs in Bantry from 6th to 12th July.

These writers include Maurice Riordan, Richard Skinner, Mary Morrissy, Abbie Spallen, Kevin Rushby and Oisín McGann.

This year, Christmas Gift Vouchers will be available for those who would like to give the gift of a workshop to a friend, or relative, who is a keen or aspiring writer.

From Creative Writing for Beginners to Historical Fiction, Scriptwriting to Poetry, Wild Women Writing to the Short Story there is a workshop to suit every aspiring or established writer looking to spend five days in beautiful Bantry honing their craft.

The editor of Poetry Review and recently short-listed for the TS Eliot Award, Maurice Riordan, will facilitate the workshop Let Your Poem Off The Leash. Amongst the areas covered will be how to make poetry more musical, inventive and memorable, focus on the use of syntax and voice and advice on getting work published. Maurice Riordan is Professor of Poetry at Sheffield Hallam University and has published four collections of poetry with Faber.

Director of Fiction at the Faber Academy and author of three novels, Richard Skinner, returns to tutor The Novel – How to Get Started and How to Keep Going. This workshop was a resounding success last year and this year, Richard Skinner looks at plotting, conflict and pace as well as character, research, setting and much more. By the end of the five days,participants will have an excellent one page synopsis and pitch for their novels.

For those who dream of following in the footsteps of Hilary Mantel or Colum McCann, Writer Fellow at UCC and author of three historical novels, Mary Morrissy will lead the Historical Fiction workshop. Aimed at intermediate level writers, the workshop will explore research, imagining oneself into another time, the melding of fact and fiction and much more. Mary Morrissy teaches fiction on the MA in Creative Writing course at UCC.

Multi award winning playwright and screenwriter Abbie Spallen will deal with the basics of scriptwriting for theatre, radio and film. From where to get ideas, through to plot, structure, character, dialogue and secrets: where the magic comes from, this workshop will provide a strong knowledge of writing for all three disciplines.

Abbie Spallen’s work has been produced in New York, Edinburgh, London, Belfast and Dublin. In 2013 she received the Major Individual Artist Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

Australian writer, Josephine Rowe, will be travelling to Bantry from her home in Montreal to facilitate the Short Story and Flash Fiction workshop. She is the author of short story collections, poetry and essays. She was long-listed for the Frank O’Connor Award.

After his successful workshop at this summer’s festival, chief travel correspondent with The Guardian, Kevin Rushby, returns to tutor the Travel Writing workshop on Whiddy Island. Author of several acclaimed travel books, he is also co-founder of the documentary film company, Thinktank Films.

Wild Women Writing has been a particularly popular workshop over the past few years and it returns once again, for three days, under the stewardship of author Magi Gibson.

There will also be Preparing to Publish – the Business of Writing, Memoir and Non Fiction, Writing for Teens with Dave Lordan, Creative Writing for Beginners and Writing for Children with Oisin McGann. Details of these will be announced shortly.

Ever since the inception of the West Cork Literary Festival in the late 1990s, the workshops have been at its heart, encouraging both novice and experienced writers.

Those interested in booking a place on the workshop or who would like to buy a gift voucher, can do so by ringing the West Cork Literary Festival office on +353(0) 27 52788 or by emailing


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