Writers for Repeal

It’s been quite a week in Ireland. After a sometimes divisive campaign, we voted, overwhelmingly to repeal the eighth, and put an end to years of sadness for Irish women, forced to leave their country to…

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Mark O’Connell

The Irish journalist, Mark O’Connell, has been shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize – which is worth a whopping £30,000.  Awarded for a book that engages with medicine, his debut, To Be a Machine, has already…

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Beau Donnelly

In March 2015, Beau Donnelly, a young reporter with the Melbourne based newspaper, The Age, got a scoop. Friends of a wellness guru, Belle Gibson, told him they believed that the young woman was a fraud….

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Louise O’Neill

When I first met the novelist Louise O’Neill in 2014, she had just released Only Ever Yours, her dystopian YA debut, and was reading in the Bantry Bookshop. Attending, I was impressed with her charm and…

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Westover, Tara c. Paul Stuart

Tara Westover

Following a dysfunctional childhood, Tara embraced education. In 2014, after ten years as an academic, she moved from Cambridge to London to write a memoir. But after concentrating on academic writing for ten years, she had…

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Dervla McTiernan credit Julia Dunin

Dervla McTiernan

As a child Dervla moved from Cork to Dublin, Limerick, and then to Galway where she spent her teens. A lawyer, she worked in Dublin before setting up practice in Oranmore at 26. “I worked for…

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Rhiannon Navin

Brought up in Germany, Rhiannon moved to New York, when the advertising agency she worked for in Düsseldorf sent her there for four months. “I met my husband the first week I was there, and I…

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Debut Roundup for March

Restless Souls by Dan Sheehan. Orion. When I’m sent a debut that’s been garlanded with advance praise, I tend to be a tad nervous; and when the book’s protagonists are young men who have lost their…

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Emma Quigley

Emma loved writing in school, but she was more interested in film. After college, however, she turned to the world of IT, and has been working in that industry since. “I worked in Limerick, then moved…

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Dan Sheehan

Dan Sheehan’s mother wanted her four children to study for an employable job; instead they chose the arts, with Dan’s youngest brother following him into a career in writing. This was, perhaps, inevitable. “There’s weren’t writers…

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Mary Watson

Always a prolific reader, Mary wrote and illustrated her first book, aged five. She loved learning, and adored life at university. Studying Creative Writing in South Africa, under the tutelage of Andre Brink, she wrote a…

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Patricia Gibney

Patricia Gibney

Patricia’s first ambition was to be a journalist, but after school, she went into the civil service. “I started in the postal section of children’s allowance during Ireland’s longest postal strike in 1979. After three months…

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