Novellas & Other Recommended Reads


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img_3567If you’d like to read something longer than a short story this summer, but not too long, here is a list of recommended novellas and short novels from around the world. Hope you enjoy them.
American fiction:
1. Julie Otsuka – The Buddha in the Attic
2. Julie Otsuka – When the Emperor was Divine
3. Philip Roth – Everyman
French fiction:
4. Antoine Laurain – The Red Notebook 
5. Antoine Laurain – The President’s Hat
6. Antoine Laurain – French Rhapsody
7. Jean-Paul Didierlaurent – Reader on the 6.27 
English fiction 
8. Ian McEwan – On Chesil Beach
Austrian fiction:
9. Robert Seethaler – A Whole Life

Flash Fiction: Reflection


A short story – in a flash – one to keep you guessing to the end …

I’m delighted to have my flash fiction piece, Reflection, published in the US on Flash Fiction Magazine.

No partner. No kids. And the Christmas party only hours away.


The antique dressing table, rescued from my grandmother’s house, beckons. As an only child, I spent much of my childhood in the guest bedroom where it lived. Over the years, it has come to know all of my secrets.

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Chris Stevens: Talkin’ ‘Bout Them Squirrel Blues


On 6 April 2017, the Irish Writers Centre played host to the Dublin launch of Talkin’ Squirrel Blues.


By 6.00 that evening, the room was all set up. And at 6.30 the guests – the great and the good of the Dublin literary scene – began to arrive.


After some refreshing refreshments and casual chatter among the guests in the reception area, it was time to bring the party upstairs on to the main event of the evening…

20170406_182558Chris Stevens had kindly agreed to say some introductory words about blues music, specifically the blues music of Fingers Flaherty. You can read Chris’s entertaining and informative speech below.

20170409_103137Fingers Flaherty’s Blues

Blues music is a distinctly American musical style, which grew out of the cotton fields of the Mississippi delta in the late 19th Century, before moving south to New Orleans, north to Memphis and Chicago, and then of…

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The curious disappearance of the Old Time Irish marmalade cat


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By Orla Grant-Donoghue

For anyone who remembers eating coarse cut marmalade Old Time Irish Marmalade in the 1970s, I hope this piece I wrote published in the Irish Times today will bring back some memories.


Thanks to Graeme Igoe for the photos of the label and for clearing up the mystery!

This was a time when the only marmalade available was coarse cut and milk was delivered to our door in glass bottles.


READING THE LINES : A 1916 Commemorative Event


Fiery Arrow in association with Live Encounters
invite you to

READING THE LINES A 1916 Commemorative Event
at Tallaght Library

6pm – 8pm on Monday, 7 November 2016

Readers will include Platform One & Guests
Music courtesy of Tony Bardon

Refreshments will be served.


“The idea behind Reading The Lines derives from William Butler Yeats’ Easter 1916. Poets  were invited to choose a line from this iconic work which resonated for them, either culturally, politically or historically. The chosen line was then given a new lease of poetic life, forming a transitional bridge from the now of 2016 to a century ago and the events which led up to or followed on from Ireland becoming a Republic.”
Eileen Casey, Irish Poet and Writer

Live Encounters Platform One Writers Easter

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Festival: Fish Anthology 2016 Launch at the West Cork Literary Festival


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© Vivienne Kearns

Fish Anthology 2016 This year I entered the Fish Flash Fiction competition with ‘A Quarter Pound of Tea’ and was delighted to be selected as a finalist by flash fiction judge Nuala O’Connor.

With over 5,000 entries in the four Fish competition categories, my submission was one of 40 pieces published in this year’s Fish Anthology 2016, edited by Clem Cairns, which can be purchased here. The 40 pieces published in the anthology comprises the 10 finalists from each of the four Fish competition categories; short story, flash fiction, short memoir and poetry.

I was also invited to read ‘A Quarter Pound of Tea’ at the anthology’s official launch at the West Cork Literary Festival in Bantry, Co. Cork on July 20th, made possible by Clem and the Fish team who publish the anthology each year.

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Poetry: The Arrest


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© Orla Grant-Donoghue
(After a painting of the same title by Kathleen Fox in 1916. Includes a line from Easter 1916 by WB Yeats)

Second in command, Constance led
Irish troops at St Stephen’s Green
Nobody there to intervene
They held fast, not one fled.

She fought until the last day
Her nights in argument
Never one to be content
until all Ireland had their say.

Smoke swirled in cold air
Rifles towards grey skies
Did they know more would die?
That nothing in this rising would be fair.

Dublin crumbled, many lay dead
Ireland free their one request
A crowd gathered at her arrest
“I am ready,” was all she said.