Monday, 6 October 2008

Bad Day in Blackrock by Kevin Power

A few years ago a group of teenage boys kicked another boy to death outside Annabel's nightclub in Dublin. It was a controversial affair that sparked much debate in the media and, of course, in people’s everyday lives. The boys were mainly from well connected families and there were many accusations and murmurs that there punishment may have been more severe had they been from a different background. There have been quite a few incidents like this where kids from wealthy influential families manage to get away with horrendous crimes and many where rugby, the gentleman's sport, leads to very violent off pitch activities.

Bad Day in Blackrock is a fictional tale by Kevin Power influenced by that tragic night in South Dublin. While I have yet to read this novel and, as Ailbhe points out in her blog, there is always a chance of being exploitative when using real events in fiction, I have no doubt that this book will be a page-turner. Though it is yet to hit the shelves it has already caused sparks as you can see in the article in the Independent and the Irish Times.

Kevin Power was shortlisted in 2007 for RTE's Francis McManus Award and his story The American Girl is currently shortlisted for the Hennessy Award. I can say without doubt that Kevin is destined to dazzle us all with many books in his lifetime, and if you wish to buy the first (and I really think you should) Bad Day in Blackrock goes on sale on the 15th of October.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Dublin: The Open Wall

The Open Wall runs creative writing workshops every second Wednesday, in Cassidy's on Westmoreland Street, Dublin, from 7.30pm-9ish.

The organisers have this to say about The Open Wall:

"After many years at a variety of creative writing workshops, we have started The Open Wall - a workshop where participants are not obliged to read aloud. Instead, we have 'The Open Wall' where, at the end of each workshop, participants can pin up their work if they want, so that we can read and discuss the works after on a more personal level.

Every fortnight a different person presents the workshop. The workshops can be made up of a variety of different exercises or guidelines using a number of different mediums (such as art, literature, music) designed to give the group inspiration about a certain topic or theme. Themes so far have included childhood memories, dreams, imagism and character development. "

Next workshop - Wednesday 8th October
Admission is free, except for the drink you buy at the bar!