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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Salmon Publishing invites you to the Galway Launch of 'Mentioning The War' by Kevin Higgins

The Galway Launch
Mentioning the War - essays and reviews (1999 -2011)
by Kevin Higgins
published by Salmon Publishing

The book be launched by Darrell Kavanagh
@ Galway Arts Centre, 47 Dominick Street, Galway
on Saturday, April 7th

Best known for his dark, satirical poems; Kevin Higgins published his first book review in The Galway Advertiser in June 1999. Reading Mentioning the War, it becomes obvious that Higgins is not like other critics. An enthusiastic advocate for the work of the new generation of poets who have emerged from Ireland’s thriving live poetry scene; he is also a merciless opponent of hypocrisy and pretentiousness wherever he finds it. His writing is overtly political in a way that draws comparison with George Orwell – the subject of two extended essays here. It would be impossible to agree with everything in this book; it is a book which often disagrees with itself. But on subjects as diverse as socialist poetry and neoconservatism, funding for the arts and the anti-war movement, Higgins informs, infuriates and entertains, as any good critic should.

“The importance of Higgins, in particular, in spearheading a whole new poetry reading/performance movement in Ireland over the last decade cannot be overstated…he is important not just to readers who might agree with his political or ideological critiques but also to practitioners and students of poetry itself regardless of their ideological inclinations.” Philip Coleman

“There’s an arresting phrase, a new angle on a writer or a political position you thought you already knew about, in just about every piece here…The insights range from the literary to the existential to the seriously amusing…one of the things Mentioning the War offers, almost incidentally, is an insider’s account of how to learn to write.” John Goodby

KEVIN HIGGINS facilitates poetry workshops at Galway Arts Centre; teaches creative writing at Galway Technical Institute and on the Brothers of Charity Away With Words programme. He is also Writer-in-Residence at Merlin Park Hospital and the poetry critic of the Galway Advertiser. He was a founding co-editor of The Burning Bush literary magazine. His first collection of poems The Boy With No Face was published by Salmon in February 2005 and was short-listed for the 2006 Strong Award. His second collection, Time Gentlemen, Please, was published in March 2008 by Salmon. One of the poems from Time Gentlemen, Please, ‘My Militant Tendency’, featured in the Forward Book of Poetry 2009. His work also features in the anthology Identity Parade – New British and Irish Poets (Ed Roddy Lumsden, Bloodaxe, 2010). Frightening New Furniture is his third collection of poems and was published in 2010 by Salmon Poetry. Kevin has read his work at most of the major literary festivals in Ireland and at Arts Council and Culture Ireland supported poetry events in Kansas City, USA (2006), Los Angeles, USA (2007), London, UK (2007), New York, USA (2008), Athens, Greece (2008); St. Louis, USA (2008), Chicago, USA (2009), Denver, USA (2010), Washington D.C (2011), Huntington, West Virginia, USA (2011), Geelong, Australia (2011) & Canberra, Australia (2011). As part of his Culture Ireland supported trip to Chicago in February 2009 he participated in and took first place in a specially arranged poetry slam at the Chicago’s Green Mill Bar and Lounge, the birthplace of slam poetry. Kevin’s fourth collection of poetry, The Ghost In The Lobby, will be published by Salmon Poetry in 2013. Kevin is co-organiser of Over The Edge literary events.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Spring Creative Writing Classes at Galway Technical Institute

Creative Writing for Beginners with Kevin Higgins takes place one evening per week (Wednesday) from 7-9.30pm. (8 weeks). It commences on Wednesday, March 28th, 2012. 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 poems, stories or memoir.

Intermediate Creative Writing with Susan Millar DuMars takes place one evening per week (Tuesday) from 7-9.30pm (8 weeks) It commences on Tuesday, March 20th, 2012. 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.

You can book a place in either class by calling to GTI, Father Griffin Road, Galway (10am-4pm)  and paying with credit/debit card.

Places can be booked now via the G.T.I website 

People can also enroll at Galway Technical Institute on Tuesday March 20th, 5-7pm, using credit/debit card.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Gerry Potter (once known as Chloe Poems) returns to North Beach Poetry Nights

Not to be missed!
Gerry Potter (once known as Chloe Poems) returns
to North Beach Poetry Nights
on Monday 26th March
in the Crane Bar at 9 pm.

Gerry Potter is currently touring his new book of autobiographcal performance poetry 'Planet Middle Age', follow up to the successful 'Planet Young'. A favourite son of both Manchester and his home town Liverpool, Gerry has also been wowing audiences nationally with domestic-fantastic free verse. Gerry has a reputation for putting his Scouse voice on the line, a soaring sing-song accent, strong on poetry and strong on the causes of poetry. Creator and destroyer of the infamous gingham diva Chloe Poems, Gerry's new work is very different to his alter ego, though no less passionate. Performance meets theatre meets poetry and rhythm, creating a blistering soundscape of experience and entertainment.

Poets wishing to enter the Slam on the night need 2 max. three minutes poems.
The poem for the second round must be performed without a script.
The prize is a bottle of wine and entry to the North Beach Grand Slam in December.

Door: 5/3 Euro

Info: John @ 091-593290

North Beach Poetry Nights appreciates the continuing generous support of Galway City Council.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

March Over The Edge Writers’ Gathering at The Kitchen @ The Museum with Eamonn Harrigan, Kerrie O’Brien, Maureen Boyle, Bernie McGill & Deirdre Cartmill

Over The Edge in association with Poetry Ireland presents the March Over The Edge Writers’ Gathering with readings by poets and fiction writers Kerrie O’Brien, Maureen Boyle, Bernie McGill & Deirdre Cartmill. The centre piece of the evening will be the launch of Galway-based writer Eamonn Harrigan’s debut novel, Where The Dead Go. The event will take place at The Kitchen @ The Museum, Spanish Arch, Galway on Friday, March 9th, 8pm. All are welcome. There is no cover charge.

Eamonn Harrigan was shortlisted for new writer of the year in the Over the Edge competition. His first novel Where the Dead Go has just been published by Solstice Publishing. He did a Masters in Screenwriting in the Huston Film School NUIG and the Professional Programme in Screenwriting in UCLA. He has written two feature length screenplays and several short scripts.

Kerrie O' Brien has been published in various Irish and UK literary journals including Southword, Orbis and Crannóg. Her poem Blossoms was chosen as the winning entry in the Emerging Talent category of the 2011 iYeats Poetry Competition. She was also highly commended for the Over the Edge New Writer of The Year Competition 2011. Her new chapbook Out of the Blueness is now available on her website

Bernie McGill's debut novel, The Butterfly Cabinet was published last year in the UK and Ireland by Headline Review and is published in the US by Free Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. She was the winner in 2008 of the prestigious Zoetrope: All-Story Short Fiction Award in the US. Her short stories have been shortlisted for numerous awards including the International Bridport Prize, the Sean O'Faolain Short Story Award, the Michael McLaverty Short Story Award and the Brian Friel Short Story Award. She also writes for theatre. She blogs at

Maureen Boyle grew up in Sion Mills in County Tyrone, now lives in Belfast, and studied at Trinity College Dublin and the universities of East Anglia, London, University of Ulster and Queens. In 2004 she was runner-up in the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Prize for an unpublished collection. She was awarded Arts Council bursaries in 2006, 2007 and 2009; and in 2007 she was awarded the Ireland Chair of Poetry Prize and the Strokestown International Poetry Prize. In 2011 she was awarded an ACES – Artist’s Career Enhancement Award - from the Arts Council Northern Ireland. She is completing her first collection of poems.

Deirdre Cartmill’s debut poetry collection Midnight Solo was published in 2004 and her second collection The Return of the Buffalo is forthcoming from Lagan Press. She received an ACES Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland in 2011 and spent a year affiliated with the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry at Queen’s. She’s previously received three Literature Awards from the Arts Council. Her work has been widely anthologised. She holds an MA with Distinction in Creative Writing from Queen’s University. She also writes in other mediums and tutors in creative writing as Deirdre Alexander. She is originally from Tyrone and currently lives in Belfast. You can find out more and read her blog at

There is no entrance fee. The Kitchen @ The Museum has a wine licence.

For further information contact 087-6431748.

Over The Edge acknowledges the ongoing generous financial support of the Arts Council
and Galway City Council

Friday, February 03, 2012

Novelist Chris Binchy for February 'Over The Edge: Open Reading'

Chris Binchy

The February ‘Over The Edge: Open Reading’ takes place in Galway City Library on Thursday, February 23rd, 6.30-8.00pm. The Featured Readers are Chris Binchy, Anne Irwin & Philip Abbink.

Chris Binchy was born in 1970. He studied English and Spanish at UCD and later graduated from the master's course in creative writing at Trinity College Dublin. He has published four novels. The Very Man was shortlisted for Irish Novel of the Year in 2003. Since then he has published People Like Us, Open-handed and in 2010 Five Days Apart was published by Harper Collins US. He lives in Dublin.

Anne Irwin was born in Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo. She has lived in Galway since 1988. She studied English and Philosophy at U.C.G and is a practising Homeopath. She has been attending poetry workshops with Kevin Higgins for the past two years. Anne has previously read her poems at Clarinbridge Arts Festival, the 2011 NUI Galway Alumni literary evening and the Flat Lake Festival. She was long-listed in the Over The Edge New Writer of The Year competition in both 2010 and 2011. Her poetry has been published in the 2011 issue of the ROPES literary journal.

When Philip Abbink’s wife got a job in Ireland, he quit his job as a Canadian lawyer and became the official Writer in Residence at their new flat in Galway. The Residency funded writing classes at GTI and Galway Arts Centre. Philip has written short stories, children’s books, and an entire novel (if you add up two unrelated halves). Several stories have provoked polite rejections from respectable publications and one was shortlisted for the Over the Edge New Writer of the Year competition in 2011.

As usual there will be an open-mic after the Featured Readers have finished. New readers are always most 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 & The Arts Council.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

North Beach Poetry Nights with Stephen James Smith & Poetry Slam

North Beach Poetry Nights returns

on Monday 27th February

in the Crane Bar at 9 pm

with guest poet: Stephen James Smith
Stephen James Smith is a poet, playwright and a bit of a legend in Dublin. Not only has he won the Cúirt International Literary Festival Poetry Grand Slam, and numerous other awards. His ABSOLUTE Fringe play ‘Three Men Talking’ was shortlisted for the Bewley’s ‘Little Gem Award 2011’. In 2009 he proudly represented Ireland at the Vilenica Literary Festival Slovenia and in 2010 at Wiersze w Metrze Poland. In April 2011 he was invited by Culture Ireland to recite in the iconic Nuyorican Poetry Café New York. ‘Arise and Go!’ his debut album with musician Enda Reilly was selected by Hot Press as one of the best albums of 2011. He has been translated into six languages and published all over the globe. Most importantly he likes tea, shortbread, ice-cream and feeding the ducks in St. Stephens Green park.

"Stephen James Smith is a ball of hydrogen gas that should be pumped into every household across the land. He knocks seven shades of shite out of all the usual “birds and bees, whey and cheese” nonsense you find at poetry readings" - Jinx Lennon Punk Poet

Poets wishing to enter the Slam on the night need 2 max. three minutes poems. The poem for the second round must be performed without a script. The prize is a bottle of wine and entry to the North Beach Grand Slam in December.

Info: John Walsh @ 091-593290.

North Beach Poetry Nights appreciates the continuing generous support of Galway City Council.