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November 2019

Belfast Launch of The Danger and The Glory: Irish Authors on the Art of Writing

13. November 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Irish Secretariat, 40 Linenhall Street
Belfast, BT2 8BA United Kingdom
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The Danger and the Glory is a collection of essays, articles and short fiction from 50 Irish writers involved in the Kaleidoscope: writers@work project, in which they describe what writing fiction means to them. Published by Arlen House and edited by Hedwig Schwall, director of the Leuven Centre for Irish Studies (LCIS). Hedwig is co-editor of the series Irish Studies in Europe (ISE) and editor of Volume 8 (Boundaries, Passages, Transitions), and literature editor of RISE, the Review of Irish Studies in Europe, where she was special editor of issue 2.1 on Irish Textiles: T/issues in Communities and their Representation in Art and Literature). She is now preparing a book on Parent-Child Relations in Contemporary Irish Fiction. The collection includes Bernie McGill's article 'Meeting Mrs Thatcher', available to read online at Kaleidoscope. The Danger and the Glory is available to order online.

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January 2020

‘Strung on Air’: A St Brigid’s Day Celebration at Seamus Heaney HomePlace, Bellaghy

31. January 2020 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Seamus Heaney HomePlace, 45 Main Street
Bellaghy, BT45 8HT United Kingdom
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£12.00

Featuring Moyra Donaldson, Bernie McGill and Maria McManus, with music from Brigid O’Neill ‘As if St Brigid once more Had rigged up a ray of sun Like the one she’d strung on air To dry her own cloak on’ Seamus Heaney, ‘The Clothes Shrine’   As a celebration of St Brigid’s Day, HomePlace is delighted to present three of Northern Ireland’s leading women writers, reading their work alongside the beautiful music of Brigid O’Neill. Bernie McGill is the author of two novels and one short story collection and her work has been anthologised in the award-winning collections The Long Gaze Back and The Glass Shore. She is currently Writing Fellow with the Royal Literary Fund at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University, Belfast. Maria McManus is a poet and playwright. Her most recent collection is Available Light and she has published three other collections of poetry. Maria is currently a poetry mentor for the Poetry Society and the creator of Ireland’s first Poetry Jukebox. Moyra Donaldson is a poet, creative writing facilitator and editor who has published four collections. Her most recent collection, Carnivorous, was published by Doire Press in 2019. Critically acclaimed artist Brigid O’Neill is a genre-spanning…

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March 2020

Her Other Language: workshop, panel discussion & readings

6. March 2020 @ 1:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich, 216 Falls Road
Belfast, BT12 6AH United Kingdom
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Of Mouth* is pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of Her Other Language: Women Writers from the North of Ireland Address Abuse and Domestic Violence, in association with Arlen House and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Edited by Natasha Cuddington and Ruth Carr. Her Other Language is an anthology of poems, stories and play extracts by women.  It was conceived as a project to raise the profile of the ongoing issue of domestic and sexual violence while also giving visibllity to women in our society, and women writers in particular. On a practical level, the profit of the sales of the book will go to Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid refuges. To mark the launch, there will be a series of events on Friday 6th March, 2020 at Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich in Belfast.   Her Other Language: POET AS WITNESS WORKSHOP with Annemarie Ní Churreáin Friday 6th March 2020, 1.30pm - 4.00pm Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich, 216 Falls Road, Belfast How can a poet bear witness? In what ways can we work innovatively with history, perspective and sensitive material to craft a literary work? Using as a springboard the ideas of Lola Ridge who said: 'write anything that burns…

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April 2020

‘Small Steps’

8. April 2020 @ 8:00 am - 5. May 2020 @ 12:00 pm
Flowerfield Arts Centre, 185 Coleraine Road
PORTSTEWART, Northern Ireland BT55 7HU United Kingdom
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Free

As you may have noticed, there’s something of a dearth of public events at the moment, so I’m adding a short story extract here, as part of Flowerfield Creatives' #virtuallyflowerfield online group exhibition for which the current theme is Space. It’s from a story titled ‘Small Steps’* that I’ve adapted a little, since things have changed in the world since it was first drafted. It’s around six or seven minutes of reading time, which I reckon is about my concentration span right now. I hope you enjoy it. Huge thanks to Desima Connolly, Arts Services Development Manager for Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council for the invitation to participate in the online exhibition, and to Mary McClelland for permission to use a photograph of her embroidery here. Stay home. Stay safe.     Extract from ‘Small Steps’ by Bernie McGill Our dog, Shortlegs, has a coat the colour of ploughed soil and a white bib and white socks and a white tip to her tail. Her body’s too long for the length of her legs. She looks like a big dog that’s been cut off at the knees. We got her from our neighbour, Dan, when his dog, Spritzer, had…

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July 2020

Novel Writing: First Chapters at the Virtual John Hewitt International Summer School

27. July 2020 @ 2:30 pm - 31. July 2020 @ 4:30 pm
On Zoom
£60

As part of the 2020 John Hewitt International Summer School, Bernie McGill will facilitate 3 x Two Hour Online Workshop sessions on Novel Writing: First Chapters. The workshops will be hosted online using Zoom meeting software on the following dates. Monday 27th July 2020, 1430hrs to 1630hrs Wednesday 29th July 2020, 1430hrs to 1630hrs Friday 31st July 2020, 1430hrs to 1630hrs These workshops will look at: structuring work; writing openings with impact; creating credible characters; selecting point of view, as well as outlets for completed work. Suitable for writers who are beginning or developing a novel. Participants should prepare a 250-word synopsis of their novel in advance. Works-in-progress are welcomed. Workshop fee is £60 per person. To book go to the Novel Writing link on the John Hewitt Society page. After booking your place the tutor will email you with the meeting link a week before the workshop begins. You will require a device capable of running Zoom Meeting Software with a functioning screen, microphone, speakers and a stable connection to the internet. All workshop students are advised to test their Zoom connection prior to the workshop. Refunds will not be given for issues caused by your hardware, software or internet connectivity. Online workshops are available on…

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August 2020

Online Workshop: What’s a short story?

29. August 2020 @ 10:30 am - 30. August 2020 @ 3:30 pm
Online United Kingdom + Google Map

*Please note this workshop is now fully booked What’s a short story? In these online Zoom sessions, hosted by Ballyeamon Barn and led by writer Bernie McGill, we will ask what makes a good short story, and in practical and participative writing exercises, look at the ways in which we might attempt to combine those elements in our own writing. What’s the story about? How does it begin? Where and when is it set? Who is in it? Who’s going to tell it? What happens? Why do they do that? How does it end? Come with a place or a person or an event in mind and we’ll begin. Maximum no. of participants: 10 Saturday 29th August 10.30am – 12 noon and 2pm – 3.30pm Sunday 30th August 2pm – 3.30pm (4.5 hours in total) Facilitator Bernie McGill is the author of the  short story collection Sleepwalkers, shortlisted in 2014 for the Edge Hill Prize. She has written two novels: The Butterfly Cabinet, and The Watch House which was nominated in 2019 for the Ireland/European Union Prize for Literature. She has been published in the UK, the US and in translation in Italy and in the Netherlands. Her short fiction has appeared in…

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October 2020

Online Creative Writing Workshops hosted by Burnavon Arts Centre, Cookstown*

3. October 2020 @ 10:30 am - 10. October 2020 @ 12:00 pm
Online United Kingdom
£20

*Please note this workshop is now fully booked. You are welcome to join these two practical online workshops led by writer Bernie McGill on the everyday craft of writing, with the aim of sparking ideas for new work. The workshops will take place over 2 weeks: on Saturday 3rd October and on Saturday 10th October 2020, 10.30 am - 12 noon on each day. All levels of experience welcome, from experienced writers to first-timers, poets and fiction writers alike. The workshop will be fully participative with attendees taking part in writing exercises online, developing work at home and sharing their work with group participants. Come with writing materials and be prepared to write. £20 fee includes both dates After booking your place the tutor will email you with the meeting link a few days before the first workshop begins. You will require a device capable of running Zoom Meeting Software with a functioning screen, microphone, speakers and a stable connection to the internet. * Please Note: The tutor will require your email address for the purpose of this workshop * All workshop participants are advised to test their Zoom connection prior to the workshop. Refunds will not be given for issues caused by your…

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Online Fiction Writing Surgery

13. October 2020 @ 6:30 pm - 17. November 2020 @ 8:30 pm
Online United Kingdom
€165

*Update The Irish Writers Centre is offering bursaries on its courses to writers based in, or from, Northern Ireland, and to Irish language writers. Apply by 1st October. Full details on The Irish Writers Centre's News Page.   Course Level: Emerging Maximum no. 12 Course Summary: Grab a seat. Pull up to the virtual table. Would you appreciate some up-close and detailed feedback on your work? Would you be prepared to share up to 2000 words of your fiction writing with a professional writer and with a group of other writers, at a similar writing stage to you? This short course will offer participants the opportunity to have their writing read and workshopped by writer Bernie McGill, and by a peer group of emerging fiction writers. Course Outline: Participants should submit a maximum of 2000 words of their fiction writing (short story or novel excerpt) at least two weeks prior to the course commencing. The course will consist of 6 x two hour weekly workshops in each of which the work of two participants will be discussed. The work will be circulated to all twelve participants in advance. Participants will be provided with guidelines by the tutor and encouraged to…

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Creative Writing Workshop at Seamus Heaney HomePlace, Bellaghy

24. October 2020 @ 10:30 am - 1:30 pm
Seamus Heaney HomePlace, 45 Main Street
Bellaghy, BT45 8HT United Kingdom
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£20

Creative Writing Workshop Moyola Hall and Sensory Garden, Seamus Heaney HomePlace* *Please note: this workshop will now take place online Join facilitator Bernie McGill for a writing workshop in the Moyola Hall and Sensory Garden at HomePlace, Bellaghy, inspired by the work of Seamus Heaney. This will be a practical workshop on the everyday craft of writing with the aim of sparking ideas for new work. All levels of experience welcome from experienced writers to first-timers, poets and fiction writers alike. Participants will have the option to find a spot outdoors in the Sensory Garden to write, weather permitting, or at a social distance indoors in the Moyola Hall. Come with writing materials, prepared to write. A hard backed notebook or clipboard may be useful for writing outdoors. Dress for the weather! *Full social distancing and safety measures are in place and workshops will have specific guidelines to allow for maximum enjoyment and participant safety. Please Note: in order to send resource material for printing at home in advance of the workshop the facilitator will require participants’ email addresses* Bernie McGill is the author of two novels: The Watch House (nominated for Ireland European Prize for Literature in 2019) and The Butterfly Cabinet (named by…

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March 2021

Sowing the Seeds: Online Creative Writing Workshops with Bernie McGill

6 March @ 10:30 am - 27 March @ 12:00 pm
Online United Kingdom + Google Map
£20

Saturday 6th March 10.30am - 12 noon Saturday 13th March 10.30am - 12 noon* *Please note that, due to demand, a second round of workshops has been added on Saturday 20th and Saturday 27th March from 10.30am - 12 noon. The booking fee covers two workshops (taking place on two consecutive Saturdays). Book at The Burnavon Arts Centre website. As we look ahead to Spring and to the growing of the light, participants are invited to these two practical online writing workshops, designed to ‘sow some seeds’: to inspire ideas for writing and developing new work. All levels of experience welcome from experienced writers to first-timers, poets and fiction writers alike. The workshop will be fully participative with attendees taking part in writing exercises online, developing work at home and sharing their work with group participants. Come with writing materials and be prepared to write. After booking your place the tutor will email you with the meeting link a few days before the workshop begins. * Please Note: The tutor will require your email address for the purpose of this workshop * You will require a device capable of running Zoom Meeting Software with a functioning screen, microphone, speakers and a stable…

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