Monday, 17 September 2012


Men praying on Patrick St, Cork, during the 2011 festival
My favourite week in September has arrived - Cork Short Story Festival week! I head off tomorrow and I can't wait. I am teaching a four day workshop this year (sold out) as well as reading on Thursday from Mother America at 7.15pm with Canadian author D.W. Wilson. I'm also taking part in the Flash Fiction Rapid Fire Reading on Friday night at 11pm in Triskel Christchurch for Culture Night.

And I have a new story in Five Dials which is being launched at the festival at 4pm on Wednesday in the library. I've been a fan of Five Dials for years so it's a huge thrill to be between its covers. There's a Flash Fiction Panel on Friday and otherwise I will be attending readings by smashing writers such as Tania Hershman, Sarah Hall, Mike McCormack, Éilís Ní Dhuibhne and John Banville.

There is a Canadian authors panel as well as a Short Story Showcase which is an exhibition by those who keep the short story alive and kicking in Ireland. Among the exhibitors will be Southword, The Stinging Fly and The Moth.

Sunday night will see the Frank O'Connor Award of €25,000 presented to Nathan Englander for his collection What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank - a rollicking and bold look at what it means to be Jewish. The book is full of surprises and is a hoot in some places and quite graphic and disturbing in others. I genuinely never knew where anything was headed in these stories and each one felt fresh and groundbreaking.

The full festival programme is here.

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