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Sunday, May 19, 2019

May Over The Edge: Open Readig with Orla McAlinden, Rory Duffy, & Mona Jakob


Mona Jakob, Rory Duffy, & Orla McAlinden for final Over The Edge: Open Reading before the summer break 
Orla McAlinden
The May ‘Over The Edge: Open Reading’ takes place in Galway City Library on Thursday, May 30th 6.30-8.00pm. The Featured Readers are Orla McAlinden, Rory Duffy, &.Mona Jakob. There will as usual be an open-mic after the Featured Readers have finished. New readers are always especially welcome at the open-mic. This is the final Over The Edge: Open Reading before the summer break. The evening will also see the announcement of the details of this year’s Over The Edge New Writer of The Year competition.

Mona Jakob has been an on-and-off-participant in Susan Millar DuMars’ classes for creative writing over the last couple of years and is currently enrolled in her Advanced Fiction Writing Class. Her only publication so far has been in the academic field of Old/Medieval Irish (for the curious: A study of the Green Man in the story of ‘Buile Shuibhne’), but she hopes to finish her first novel in the not too distant future – working in a bookshop (Dubray’s) certainly is a good incentive. Enjoying discussions on what constitutes literary fiction, she draws inspiration from the works of J. R. R. Tolkien, Becky Chambers, John Connolly and Robin Hobb.

Rory Duffy lives in Athlone. His fiction has been published in several journals including Crannóg, The Stony Thursday Book, Southword, and Penduline Press. He was highly commended in the Over the Edge New Writer of The Year competition in 2015 and won the 2016 Over The Edge Annual Fiction Slam. Also in 2016 Rory was placed 3rd in the PJ O'Connor Awards and was also short listed for the Frances MacManus Award. In 2017 he was nominated for a ZeBBie Award by the Irish Writers Guild for his radio play Paulo in the Underworld. Rory was also highly commended in the Seán Ó'Faoláin Award in 2017. Currently his favourite bird is the common swift (Apus Apus) but this may change.
Orla McAlinden is a multi-award-winning author, vet, farmer, teacher and mother, originally from Armagh, living in Kildare. Her short-story collections and novels, The Accidental Wife, The Flight of the Wren (Red Stag/Mentor Books, Sept 2018) and Full of Grace (Red Stag /Mentor Books, May 2019) have featured in the Sunday Times (Ireland) magazine, The Irish Times, Irish News, on RTE and BBC Radio and others. Her awards include the Eludia Award for first fiction, The Cecil Day Lewis emerging writer award, and the Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards Short Story of the Year. Her short fiction has never yet appeared in an Irish print journal, but she lives in hope!  www.orlamcalinden.com

The MC for the evening will be Susan Millar DuMars. For further details phone 087-6431748.

Over The Edge acknowledges the ongoing generous financial support of Galway City Council, Poetry Ireland & The Arts Council.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

May Over The Edge Writers’ Gathering launches Christine Valters Paintner’s debut poetry collection


The May Over The Edge Writers’ Gathering presents an exciting variety of poetry including the Galway launch of Christine Valters Paintner’s debut poetry collection, Dreaming of Stones (Paraclete Poetry) with guest speaker Dara Molloy. There will also be readings by Patrick Chapman, Raine Geoghegan, Colm Keegan, and Anita Ouellette. The event will take place at The Kitchen @ The Museum, Spanish Arch, Galway on Friday, May 10th, 8pm. All are welcome. There is no cover charge.

Christine Valters Paintner is the online Abbess of Abbey of the Arts, a virtual monastery and global, ecumenical community integrating contemplative practice and creative expression. She is a Benedictine oblate living on the west coast of Ireland with her husband John. Together they lead pilgrimages and retreats in Ireland, Scotland, Germany, and Austria. Christine is the author of twelve books on spirituality, monastic wisdom, creativity, and the arts including The Artist’s Rule and The Soul’s Slow Ripening.  Her poems have been published in journals in the U.S., Canada, Ireland, and the UK. She has participated in poetry workshops at Galway Arts Centre and online. Dreaming of Stones is Christine’s debut poetry collection. 

Patrick Chapman was born in 1968 and lives in Dublin. He has published eight poetry collections since 1991, as well as a novel and three volumes of stories. His other works include a short film, television for children, and audio dramas for Doctor Who and Dan Dare. He produced B7’s dramatisation of Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles for BBC Radio 4. His most recent poetry collection Open Season on the Moon is just published by Salmon Poetry.

Anita Ouellette is a poet living in Massachusetts. She was runner-up in the 2013 Over The Edge New Writer of the Year competition and is a regular participant in Kevin Higgins’ online poetry workshop. Anita is currently on holiday in Ireland and will share a couple of her poems.

Colm Keegan is from Dublin. Elaine Feeney said this of his most recent poetry collection, Randomer (Salmon, 2018): “Delving into themes of mid-life, fatherhood, love, belonging and family, with solid observations and self-surrendering language, here is a poet now ready to watch and listen. Keegan is loyal to his trade, never hiding truth, or shirking responsibility. Randomer catapults Keegan into the anti-hero role of his own tales. The Dublin that created him, he bravely recreates, through lines that are gritty yet gorgeous. Keegan continues to write politically, honouring the list poem, watching Ireland with a satirical eye and sharp wit, while questioning the poet’s place in everything: the home, the city, even his place in poetry and its lure, for better or worse.  Randomer is a fascinating read. It finds edgy beauty in the banality of human struggle, in a world that’s off-kilter. These poems are gut-wrenchingly raw and beautiful.  You will return to this book again and again. Keegan is a romantic with nerve and bravery.  We find solace in his path.”  

Raine Geoghegan, MA is a poet and prose writer of Romany, Irish and Welsh descent living in the UK. Recent publications include Poetry Ireland Review; The Curlew; Travellers' Times; Ofi Press and Under the Radar. She is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net 2018 nominee. Her pamphlet, Apple Water: Povel Panni was launched in December 2018.

Over The Edge acknowledges the ongoing generous financial support of the Arts Council, Poetry Ireland, and Galway City Council.

Over The Edge Offers Poets Worldwide Online Poetry Workshop with Kevin Higgins STARTING October 2019

Starting in early October, Over The Edge is offering aspiring poets worldwide a ten week online poetry workshop with poet Kevin Higgins, whose best-selling first collection, The Boy With No Face, published by Salmon Poetry, was short-listed for the 2006 Strong Award for Best First Collection by an Irish poet. Kevin’s second collection of poems, Time Gentlemen, Please, was published in 2008 by Salmon Poetry and his poetry is discussed in The Cambridge Introduction to Modern Irish Poetry. His third collection Frightening New Furniture was published in 2010 by Salmon and his work also appears in the generation defining anthology Identity Parade –New British and Irish Poets (Ed. Roddy Lumsden, Bloodaxe, 2010) and in The Hundred Years’ War: modern war poems (Ed. Neil Astley, Bloodaxe, April 2014). A collection of Kevin’s essays and book reviews, Mentioning The War, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2012. Kevin’s poetry has been translated into Greek, Spanish, Turkish, Italian, Japanese, Russian, & Portuguese. The Ghost in The Lobby, was published in February 2014, also by Salmon. In 2014 Kevin's poetry was the subject of a paper 'The Case of Kevin Higgins, or, 'The Present State of Irish Poetic Satire' presented by David Wheatley at a Symposium on Satire at the University of Aberdeen.  '2016 - The Selected Satires of Kevin Higgins' was published by NuaScéalta in early 2016. A pamphlet of Kevin’s political poems The Minister For Poetry Has Decreed was published in December 2016 by the Culture Matters imprint of the UK based Manifesto Press; Song of Songs 2:0 - New and Selected Poems was published by Salmon in April 2017. His poems have been praised by, among others, Tony Blair’s biographer John Rentoul, Observer columnist Nick Cohen, historian Ruth Dudley Edwards, and Sunday Independent columnist Gene Kerrigan; been quoted in The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Daily Mirror, Hot Press magazine, and on Tonight with Vincent Browne; and read aloud by film director Ken Loach at a political meeting in London. The Stinging Fly magazine recently described Kevin as "likely the most read living poet in Ireland." His next collection of poems, Sex and Death at Merlin Park Hospital, is published in June by Salmon Poetry.

 workshop facilitator Kevin Higgins

Each of the ten weeks Kevin will email participants a poetry writing exercise for the following week and participants will submit one of their poems to Kevin for constructive criticism. Kevin will work with participants on making each of their poems the best possible poem it can be.

Kevin is a highly experienced workshop facilitator and several of his students have gone on to achieve publication success. He has facilitated poetry workshops at Galway Arts Centre for the past twelve years. One of his workshop participants won the prestigious Hennessy Award for New Irish Poetry; two have been shortlisted for the Shine/Strong Award for Best First Collection by an Irish poet; two have won the Cúirt New Writing Prize; and another the Cúirt Poetry Grand Slam; several have published collections of their poems with reputable publishers.


Kevin is the Creative Writing Director of the NUI Galway International Summer School and teaches poetry on the NUIG BA Creative Writing Connect programme. Kevin is co-organiser of the successful Over The Edge: Open Reading series which specialises in promoting new writers.

The workshop will run for ten weeks, commencing Wednesday, October 2nd 2019. The cost to participants is €110. There are no refunds. The workshop will be conducted in English only. THIS WORKSHOP WILL BE LIMITED TO 30 REGISTERED PARTICIPANTS, SO IF YOU WANT TO ENSURE A PLACE YOU SHOULD BOOK NOW.


For queries, email over-the-edge-openreadings@hotmail.com


YOU CAN REGISTER ONLINE NOW