Follow Over The Edge on Twitter

Follow Over The Edge by Email

Sunday, January 05, 2020

January Over The Edge: Open Reading - Over The Edge Celebrates 17th Birthday with Louise Kennedy, Orla Fay, & Attracta Fahy

The January ‘Over The Edge: Open Reading’ takes place in Galway City Library on Thursday, January 23rd, 6.30-8.00pm. The Featured Readers are Attracta Fahy, Orla Fay, & Louise Kennedy. All welcome. There will as usual be an open-mic after the Featured Readers have finished which this month will include, among others, fiction writers from the MA in Writing at NUI Galway.  New readers are especially welcome. This reading celebrates the seventeenth anniversary of the first Over The Edge reading in Galway City Library and there will be a birthday party afterwards. 

Attracta Fahy works as a Psychotherapist, lives in Co.Galway, and has three children. She completed her MA in Writing NUIG in 2017, and participates in the Over The Edge poetry workshops. Her poems have been published in The Irish Times, Banshee, Poetry Ireland Review, Poethead, Coast to Coast to Coast, Orbis, Crossways, The Curlew, North West Words, Honest Ulsterman, Four x Four, Boyne Berries, The Cormorant, Enthralled, The Blue Nib, Burning House Press, Elixir, Bangor Literary Journal, A New Ulster, Three Drops from a Cauldron, Picaroon, and several other magazines and journals at home and abroad. She was shortlisted for 2018 Over The Edge New Writer of The Year, and was a Blue Nib nominee for a Pushcart prize. Her debut poetry pamphlet will be published by Fly On The Wall Poetry (UK) early in 2020.

Orla Fay lives in County Meath is the editor of Boyne Berries. Recently her work has been published in The Irish Times, Poetry Ireland Review, ROPES 2019, Quarryman, Ink, Sweat and Tears, The Bangor Literary Journal and FourXFour. She was shortlisted for The Cúirt New Writing Prize 2019, longlisted for the Anthony Cronin Poetry Award 2019 and won 3rd place in The Oliver Goldsmith Poetry Award 2019. She blogs at

Louise Kennedy
Louise Kennedy lives in Sligo and her fiction has been published in The Stinging Fly, Banshee and The Tangerine. She was shortlisted for the Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award 2019. Bloomsbury will publish The End of the World is a Cul de Sac, her debut collection of short stories, in early 2021. 

There will be an open-mic after the Featured Readers have finished. New readers are always especially welcome. 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.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Saolta Arts is seeking entries for its annual Poems For Patience poetry competition

Saolta Arts formerly Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust is seeking entries again for its annual poetry competition. The poetry competition is run in conjunction with the Poems For Patience series as part of Cúirt International Festival of Literature which runs from April 20th – 25th in Galway. The closing date for the competition is Friday February 22nd.

The prize as part of the annual poetry competition includes: the winner will have his/her poem published and displayed on the Arts Corridor of University Hospital Galway as part of the 2020 Poems For Patience series. Poems For Patience is a long running series which over the past decade has featured poems by leading Irish and international poets such as Seamus Heaney, Philip Schultz, Jane Hirschfield, Michael Longley, Naomi Shihab Nye, Vona Groarke, Tess Gallagher and many more. The poems, after exhibition on the Arts Corridor, are then displayed in waiting areas throughout Galway University Hospitals. The winner will also be invited to read his or her winning poem at the launch of the 2020 Poems For Patience at Cúirt International Festival of Literature in April 2020. The winner will be provided with accommodation in Galway if travelling for one night during the 2020 Cúirt International Festival of Literature. The winner will be given a copy of their poem printed and framed as a Poem for Patience poster. The winner will be asked to submit six poems for consideration to be a Featured Reader at the Over The Edge: Open Reading series in Galway City Library.
2019 winner Sinead Mongan
Margaret Flannery Arts Director ‘Poems For Patience is one of our long running projects as part of the arts programme. Each year we receive a high volume of entries for the competition and look forward to welcoming all new participants. Poems For Patience is a firm favourite for many patients, staff members and visitors’. 

Kevin Higgins & Margaret Flannery at 2016 Poems For Patience launch

The competition judge is Kevin Higgins. He is co-organiser of Over The Edge literary events in Galway. He has published five full collections of poems: The Boy With No Face (2005), Time Gentlemen, Please (2008), Frightening New Furniture (2010), The Ghost In The Lobby (2014), & Sex and Death at Merlin Park Hospital (2019). His poems also feature in Identity Parade – New British and Irish Poets (Bloodaxe, 2010) and in The Hundred Years’ War: modern war poems (Ed Neil Astley, Bloodaxe May 2014). Kevin was satirist-in-residence with the alternative literature website The Bogman’s Cannon 2015-16. 2016 – The Selected Satires of Kevin Higgins was published by NuaScéalta in 2016. Song of Songs 2:0 – New & Selected Poems was published by Salmon in Spring 2017. 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 and taught Creative Writing at Galway Technical Institute for the past fifteen years. Kevin is the Creative Writing Director for the NUI Galway International Summer School and also teaches on the NUIG BA Creative Writing Connect programme. His poems have been praised by, among others, Tony Blair’s biographer John Rentoul, Observer columnist Nick Cohen, writer and activist Eamonn McCann, historian Ruth Dudley Edwards, and Sunday Independent columnist Gene Kerrigan; and have been quoted in The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Times (London), Hot Press magazine, The Daily Mirror and on The Vincent Browne Show. The Stinging Fly magazine has described Kevin as “likely the most widely read living poet in Ireland”. Kevin’s most recent poetry collection Sex and Death at Merlin Park Hospital was published by Salmon Poetry in June; one of the poems from which will feature in A Galway Epiphany, the final instalment of Ken Bruen’s Jack Taylor series of novels.

For full details in regards to criteria and entry fee contact Bridget Cheasty, Arts Assistant, Saolta Arts, Galway University Hospitals, University Hospital, Newcastle Road, Galway Tel: +353 (0)91 893191 Email:     

About Saolta Arts:
For ten years, as Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust, we provided an Arts and Health programme to promote wellbeing and improve the hospital experience at Galway’s public hospitals.  As Saolta Arts, we shall continue to nurture the discovery and development of creative potential, encourage new ways of seeing, and stimulate fresh dialogue across 5 counties – making the hospital a place of possibilities.  Saolta Arts runs the west of Ireland's leading Arts and Health programme as a means of improving the hospital experience for patients, staff and visitors.  We believe access to the arts promotes well-being and enhances the hospital environment.  We provide a multi-disciplinary programme of events and activities, including exhibitions, participative workshops, music, theatre and poetry.  Saolta Arts CLG  is a registered Charity (CHY17964).

Sunday, December 22, 2019

New Year Beginners & Intermediate Creative Writing Classes at Galway Technical Institute BOOK YOUR PLACE NOW

Creative Writing for Beginners with Kevin Higgins takes place one evening per week (Monday) from 7-9.30pm (8 weeks) with a mid-term break. It commences on Monday, January 13th, 2020. Advance booking is essential. Places cost €120. Kevin Higgins will provide writing exercises for, and give gentle critical feedback to, those interested in trying their hand at writing stories, poems, or memoir.

Kevin Higgins
Intermediate Creative Writing with Susan Millar DuMars takes place one evening per week (Tuesday) from 7-9.30pm (8 weeks) with a mid-term break. It commences on Tuesday, January 14th, 2020. Advance booking is essential. Places cost €120. This class is suitable for those who’ve participated in creative writing classes before or begun to have work published in magazines. Flexible exercises and work-shopping of assignments, together with the study of the works of published writers, will help each class member to find their own writing voice.

Susan Millar DuMars

YOU CAN ALSO BOOK in person at Galway Technical Institute, Monday-Friday, (10am-4.30pm).

For further information contact Galway Technical Institute, Father Griffin Road, Galway, phone 091-581342 or email or see 

Over The Edge announces New Year DAYTIME course in Advanced Fiction Writing with Susan Millar DuMars STARTS February 7th

Susan Millar DuMars with Over The Edge co-organiser Kevin Higgins

THE CLASS TAKES PLACE on FRIDAYS, 2-4pm for 8 weeks.
STARTING FRIDAY FEBRUARY 7th (with a mid-term break on March 13th).

Maximum Number students: 5 

CLASS DESCRIPTION: this class is for those serious about writing short or long fiction; those who are working on a fiction project independently and feel they need feedback and support.  From week one, each student will be responsible to email an extract from their story or novel to Susan Millar DuMars and their classmates by Wednesday noon.  Students will also bring hard copies of the piece into class. Students can submit up to 5 double spaced pages each week. In each session we will provide feedback to each student. Susan’s feedback will be detailed as it will be based on her earlier reading of the work. Thus, each student will receive detailed feedback on a total of 40 pages of work.

Price: €140 for 8 weeks payable in advance. There are no refunds. To guarantee a place you must pay in advance. If you have been struggling with a short story or a novel, this is the class for you. 

The class is organised by Over The Edge literary events and will take place at 3 Carbry Road, Newcastle, Galway. Five minutes from NUI Galway. Parking available.
ABOUT THE TUTOR: Susan Millar DuMars’ debut poetry collection, Big Pink Umbrella, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2008. Her next collection, Dreams for Breakfast, appeared in April 2010. Her work features in Landing Places, Dedalus’ 2010 anthology of immigrant poetry written in Ireland; and also in The Best Of Irish Poetry 2010. A fiction writer as well, she published a collection of short stories, American Girls, with Lapwing in 2007. She published a book of short stories in 2010: Lights in the Distance, published by Doire Press, and was the Featured Fiction writer in the American online magazine The Atticus Review. She has been the recipient of an Arts Council Literature Bursary. Susan's third collection of poetry, The God Thing, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2013; her fourth collection, Bone Fire, was launched at the 2015 Cúirt Festival of International Literature. She lives in Galway, where she and her husband have run the Over the Edge readings series since 2003. Susan edited the anthology Over the Edge – The First Ten years, published by Salmon, which includes work by forty seven writers who have published a first book since they did a reading at an Over The Edge: Open Reading in Galway City Library. Susan’s New & Selected Poems was published in Spring 2019 by Salmon Poetry.