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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: 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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Music & Me: Jessica Traynor

Posted by Derek Flynn on 26 November 2018.

What are your earliest musical memories? I had a little portable tape recorder that my mum used to play me tapes on to help me fall asleep. I think I must have been four or five at the time? And the choices were Puff the Magic Dragon or Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. What a mad combo! I loved them both, but the swirling violins at the end of the summer movement in The Four Seasons used...

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Music & Me: Jo Spain

Posted by Derek Flynn on 19 November 2018.

What are your earliest musical memories? My dad playing LPs. His taste was eclectic, so anything from Boney M to the Beatles. He was a musician; he played guitar and sang and was my first singing teacher. I joined a classical choir when I was small but it was too far to keep attending, sadly. Who or what were your musical influences growing up and why? My dad, but I also come from one of...

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A Room Of One’s Own

Posted by Derek Flynn on 10 November 2018.

Writers and readers alike are always fascinated by articles on how and where writers ply their craft. A recent article “Inside the rooms where 20 famous books were written” is one such article. Among the many rooms contained in this article is this fabulous study in Ernest Hemingway’s house in Cuba, where he wrote many of his most famous books, including For Whom the Bell Tolls, A Moveable Feast, and The Old Man and the Sea. Slightly less lavish...

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Company Seeking Full Time Editor in Waterford

Posted by Derek Flynn on 30 October 2018.

A Waterford-based company that specialises in the publication industry is currently seeking an experienced Editor for an exciting new role      Minimum qualifications:                                                               3 years experience in a similar role. Proven ability to copy-edit and proofread content Research experience Strong writing skills (Examples will be required) Good...

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The Truth About Publishing

Posted by Derek Flynn on 27 August 2018.

A recent thread on Twitter by author Delilah S. Dawson caught my eye. Well, it more than caught my eye. It made me nod so much in agreement that I was in danger of dislocating my shoulders. I hope she won’t mind if I quote some of it here. You see, I was that first time author. Well, I still sort of am, even though I’ve just released my second book. I was the one...

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Music & Me: Maria Hoey

Posted by Derek Flynn on 26 June 2018.

  What are your earliest musical memories? For some reason, Petula Clarke singing Downtown comes to mind. When I googled the song title I discovered that it was released in 1965, so I am giving away my vintage here. But that one sticks in my mind and to this day, I cannot hear it without feeling uplifted and happy. It is, I think, a joyous celebration of the power of, and need for connectedness in...

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Music & Me: Lindsay J Sedgwick

Posted by Derek Flynn on 10 May 2018.

“Music & Me” is a feature in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. This week’s victim author is Lindsay J Sedgwick, author of two novels, and the recently-released guide to screenwriting, Write That Script. What are your earliest musical memories? My earliest memories are of dancing on this red leather pouffe we had in our sitting room to “Seasons In The Sun” on the radio but also lying on...

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Literary Pop Songs

Posted by Derek Flynn on 27 February 2018.

I recently came across a great post on The Literary Hub called “11 Pop Songs for Literary People”. Included in this piece by Emily Temple are some obvious choices – for instance, “Paperback Writer” by The Beatles: Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book? It took me years to write, will you take a look? It’s based on a novel by a man named Lear, And I need a job, So I want...

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The 1940s: A Time When Books Mattered

Posted by Derek Flynn on 29 January 2018.

A recent article in “Literary Hub”, “During World War II, Literature Reigned Supreme” by George Hutchinson, makes for fascinating and timely reading, in this new era of “fake news” and censorship. Here’s an excerpt: “In the 1940s, literature mattered. Popular radio shows featured literary critics talking about recent poetry and fiction. The New Yorker’s book-review editor hosted one of the most popular radio shows in America, and his anthology, Reading I’ve Liked, ranked seventh on the bestseller list for...

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