Guest Blogs

A blog by Derek Flynn

Derek Flynn runs Writing.ie's SongBook blog, and is an Irish writer and musician. He has a Masters in Creative Writing from Trinity College, Dublin. He’s been published in a number of publications, including The Irish Times, and his fiction was featured in 'Surge', an anthology of new Irish writing published by O’ Brien Press with the aim of showcasing “the very best of the next generation of Irish authors”. Online he can be found at his writing/music blog – ‘Rant, with Occasional Music’ – and on Twitter as @derekf03

You can follow Derek online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Music & Me: Wendy Erskine

Posted by Derek Flynn on 6 May 2019.

What are your earliest musical memories? Although my mum was not a music lover, she did feel passionate about ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ by Procol Harum.  If it came on the radio I had to be quiet so that she could go into a rapture.  In school, we had a radio programme that we listened to each week called Twigwidge.  It was a kind of participative folk experience where everyone had to play percussive...

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Music & Me: Adele O’ Neill

Posted by Derek Flynn on 17 April 2019.

What are your earliest musical memories? My earliest music memories are of my dad singing. His singing was only ever around the house as he went about his daily routine but I can remember his singing voice as distinctly as though it was just yesterday. I often wondered as a child why he wasn’t on stage somewhere! And whether it was a by-product of the music that was current at the time, the music I...

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Music & Me: Ciara King

Posted by Derek Flynn on 25 March 2019.

What are your earliest musical memories? Sitting in the back seat of the car when I was a little girl and Van Morrison and The Chieftain’s “Irish Heartbeat” playing in the tape deck. I learned all the words to “I’ll Tell Me Ma” and  “Star of the County Down”, much to my parent’s annoyance. I used to make Dad put on his Mary Black tape too – it must have been “By The Time It...

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Music & Me: Patricia Gibney

Posted by Derek Flynn on 11 March 2019.

What are your earliest musical memories? I must pre-empt all this with the fact that I am not a great music person. My sister, Marie, is the musical one in our family! But I do recall my grandmother playing the accordion. As a child, I used to visit her in Roscommon, and I can remember sitting by the open hearth with a turf fire while she played, and being fascinated by the speed of her...

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Music & Me: June Caldwell

Posted by Derek Flynn on 4 March 2019.

What are your earliest musical memories? My sister blaring The Bay City Rollers (I Only Want To Be With You) while putting on her illuminous blue eye shadow. The Beach Boys, Chicago, Olivia Newton-John, Paul McCartney and WINGS – Mull Of Kintyre. Bowie, of course, and some cracked random songs my mother used to play and sing along to like Val Doonican and Edith Piaf. Much later being tortured by that dreadful caper from St...

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Writer’s Incubation 2019 with Lani O’ Hanlon

Posted by Derek Flynn on 18 February 2019.

The Arts Office, Waterford City and County Council is pleased to announce details of their Writer’s Incubation 2019   A year-long sustained literary relationship with your inner muse with Author, Poet and group facilitator, Lani O’ Hanlon Writer, Lani O’ Hanlon explains, ‘This year-long Writer’s Incubation is aimed at those who would like to immerse and support themselves with the focus, intention, gentle discipline and enthusiasm to sustain a consistent writing practice using observation, reflection, memory,...

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Fish Flash Fiction Prize

Posted by Derek Flynn on 12 February 2019.

Fish Publishing are currently running a flash fiction competition and the top ten stories will be published in the FISH ANTHOLOGY 2019. The details are as follows: Word Limit: 300 Closes: 28 Feb ’19 Results: 10 April ’19 Anthology Published: July ’19 Entry Fees: €14 (€8 subsequent entries) Prizes: Top ten stories will be published in the FISH ANTHOLOGY 2019. 1st: €1,000 2nd: €300 3rd: Online Writing Course with Fish From their website: The Fish Flash Fiction Prize is an...

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Literary One Hit Wonders

Posted by Derek Flynn on 4 February 2019.

Everyone knows about pop music’s one hit wonders, but did you know that literature has its fair share as well? I came across a great article about this recently in the Irish Examiner, entitled “One Hit Literary Wonders”. Of course, when we mention literary one hit wonders, most people will think of Harper Lee and To Kill A Mockingbird, possibly the most famous example (and we’ll ignore the dubious release of Go Set A Watchman). But...

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My Year in Self-Publishing – The Story So Far

Posted by Derek Flynn on 31 December 2018.

A little over a year ago, I embarked on my self-publishing adventure. I now have two books published – Broken Falls and The Dead Girls – and, as it’s the end of the year, I figured I’d jot down some of my thoughts on the experience so far. I suppose the main thing is that most of the preconceptions I had going in were largely borne out. Yes, it is a hard slog pushing your...

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Music & Me: Caoilinn Hughes

Posted by Derek Flynn on 10 December 2018.

What are your earliest musical memories? I doubt this can be answered honestly. The earliest music I might have been exposed to (disclaimer: this still feels highly constructed and dubious) include my parents humming me to sleep; RTE Radio 1 jingles in the kitchen; the parish choir; my older siblings playing their sophisticated music (Vanilla Ice, Radiohead, R.E.M., En Vogue) and screeching notes from a violin; whatever music accompanied Bosco. Who knows? There was a lot of...

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