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Friday, January 22, 2010

Residential Poetry Courses in Cnoc Suain

Escape from the hustle-bustle and demands of everyday life to the tranquillity of Cnoc Suain in the West of Ireland, and immerse yourself in the written word for a weekend. Our courses offer you the chance to leave behind the demands of the outside world and dedicate precious time to your writing. Cnoc Suain is a lovingly restored pre-famine hill village close to Spiddal, County Galway, surrounded by the inspiring landscape of Connemara. This unique environment will give you the time and space to write, supported by the expertise of published poets. No qualifications are required, and we aim to provide a creative environment where all poets can find inspiration, hone their craft and benefit from structured and constructive feedback.

The work undertaken will be varied and stimulating: morning workshops will involve reading poems together and short writing-exercises; time will also be set aside for longer writing or editing exercises; tutors will offer one-to-one feedback on work submitted, and guidance on how to improve reading your poems in public. In the evenings there will be poetry readings by established poets and participants will be encouraged to read their work also. As a result of this total immersion and the absence of the usual distractions, this short period of time will seem much longer than a weekend. To maximise the potential benefits of the course, we recommend (but do not insist) that you share your writing with the rest of the group in workshops. We also recommend that you familiarize yourself with some of your tutors' work prior to your arrival.

Your Tutors

Kevin Higgins's first collection of poems, 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 (Cambridge University Press, 2008). His third collection Frightening New Furniture will be published next year by Salmon when his work will also appear in the generation-defining anthology, Identity Parade - New British and Irish Poets (Ed Roddy Lumsden, Bloodaxe, 2010). Kevin is an experienced workshop facilitator and several of his students have gone on to achieve publication success. One of his workshop participants at Galway Arts Centre won the prestigious Hennessy Award for New Irish Poetry, while several others have gone on to publish collections of their poems.

Lorna Shaughnessy's first collection of poems, Torching the Brown River, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2008. Her work was selected for inclusion in the Forward Book of Poetry 2009. Her second collection, The Witness Trees, is due to appear with Salmon in 2011. She has published two translations of contemporary Mexican poetry, Mother Tongue. Selected Poems by Pura López Colomé and If We Have Lost our Oldest Tales by María Baranda, both with Arlen House (2006). She lectures in the School of Languages, Literatures and Cultural Studies in the National University of Ireland, Galway.

Price: 295 euro pp single or twin room or 315 euro pp single room en suite. All meals included.

Weekend Workshops: May, Fri. 28 - Sun. 30 and Aug, Fri. 13 - Sun. 15, 2010.

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