for writers and readers….

The Laureate for Irish Fiction just gets better and better…

Irish writersIreland is going to get its first Laureate for Fiction next year and here is the incredibly strong long list. I don’t want to be ageist about this, but I think the very first appointment should celebrate authors who have influenced Irish writing for over half a century and for me the contest would be between William Trevor and Edna O’Brien. Forced to choose between them, I probably have to go for Edna, not because she’s a woman, but because of her ability to craft page-turning stories with language that is as beautiful and as precise as poetry. But then Trevor did write the short story The Ballroom of Romance. If you haven’t read it, do, do.
Your life will be better for it…

Shamrock photo credit: gioiadeantoniis via photopin cc

Irish Writing Blog

Anne Enright, one of 34 authors on the longlist for the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction (Image: The Guardian)

A longlist of 34 authors for the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction was announced this week.

Among the various (necessarily imprecise) criteria for the award are that the author has:

  • an internationally recognised body of work, and
  • demonstrated commitment to engaging with the public, the media and the literary sector

There are 21 men and 13 women on the list, including former Booker Prize winners John Banville, Anne Enright and Roddy Doyle and also William Trevor, who has made the shortlist for the Booker five times but has never won.

Other Irish literary veterans (if that’s not too harsh) are Sebastian Barry, Patrick McCabe, Dermot Bolger and Edna O’Brien, while among the relative newcomers on the list are Eimear McBride, whose debut novel A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing won the…

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2 comments on “The Laureate for Irish Fiction just gets better and better…

  1. Shane
    October 23, 2014

    Thanks for reblogging, Bridget.

    I don’t think I’ve read Ballroom of Romance, or if I have not since schooldays, so I must dig that one out.

    Is that in your top five Irish short stories?

    • bridget whelan
      October 23, 2014

      I’d say it would be in my top five of all stories and then I see I didn’t even mention it when I wrote about short stories last summer. As readers we are a fickle lot (or is that just me?) and if I answered this next week maybe something else would occur to me. By the way, The Ballroom of Romance is in my Penguin’s Collection of William Trevor’s short stories and came out in a Bodley Head 1972 collection.

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This entry was posted on October 22, 2014 by in News and tagged , , , .


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