Tuesday, 17 May 2011


It was thrilling to hear the collection had made this prestigious shortlist, especially given the calibre of those accompanying me. I quite like the reference ‘rising star’, but I have been writing a little longer than two years.

The award ceremony is in London on July 7th, where I’ll get to meet the judges, one of whom was one of the creators of this crepuscular character.

I've still a few copies left; if you'd like a signed one, there's a box in the sidebar on the left.

Saturday, 7 May 2011


So, after almost two years in the writing (and researching, planning, editing and endless rewriting), my lovely agent submitted the novel to some publishing houses this week. It's a curious feeling, that all that effort, the above mentioned blood, sweat and beer, has come down to an email attachment arriving in some editor's inbox. And now we wait for the verdicts to come in.

Meanwhile, on the subject of waiting, I was wondering, if you found yourself washed up here, with only one book at your disposal, would it be a novel, a collection of poetry or a book of short stories, to keep you company until help arrived, or didn't? And if you want to name the book, all the better. 

Tuesday, 3 May 2011


I’m running an online workshop on short fiction at the end of May. Here’s the blurb:

This is a six-week online course, which will look at all elements of the short story, including narrative voice, character development, language and style, setting up the story and engaging the reader. By the end of the course you should be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of narrative analysis and technique
  • Recognise compelling and consistent voice
  • Develop a strong critical awareness of your own work
  • Have a body of work/new ideas to take forward
  • Understand the power of allowing the reader space in a story
  • Have a sense of why the best stories work
There are still a few places left and I believe you can sign up here.

Monday, 2 May 2011


Congratulations to Louis Malloy for winning this year's Short FICTION Prize with his story 'Goldrush'. Judge Gerard Donovan had this to say:

'This accomplished piece about the hunt for invisible wealth beyond reach of all but hope and timing is distinguished at once by the skill with which – on so many levels – the author renders invisibility in the telling itself. Pared down to the hunger of desperate characters, the revelation is that of a robber preying on the seekers of wealth: a timeless journey of search and disappointment. The author allows the story itself to dictate what doesn’t need telling, details that some writers might well be tempted to render for the sake of a perceived need for verisimilitude. The great achievement here lies indeed in how those details are left hidden, as meaningless as they would be to the eyes and ears of bone-weary prospectors. In fact the pace of the story barely keeps one foot in front of the other; yet the reader is content not to want to hurry things along. The alchemy this writer brings to the page transmutes all that is concealed into a brutal gleam in the mind.'

The runners-up were:
'The Kambala Buffaloes' by Leo Madigan
'The End of the World' by Catharine Mee
'When the Hearse Goes by' by Nuala Ní Chonchúir
'Punctures' by Madeline Sonik

Louis wins £500 and his story will be published in its own illustrated chapbook in Issue 5, out this autumn.

The longlist can be found below. Thanks to all who entered.