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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: Jane Casey

Posted by Derek Flynn on 29 May 2017.

What are your earliest musical memories? I was brought up listening to two kinds of music: classical and swing. My father is a true enthusiast for music and took me and my sister to concerts from an early age. He likes to put the radio on and guess what composer is being played – or if that’s too easy, which recording it is. I think it grieved him enormously when we were old enough to...

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Jameson Offers Chance To Make Short Film with “The Wire” Star Dominic West

Posted by Derek Flynn on 13 May 2017.

For the sixth year of Jameson First Shot, three undiscovered filmmakers will be provided with the opportunity to direct award-winning actor and director Dominic West (The Wire, The Affair) in a short film that they will write and direct. The Jameson First Shot film competition is all about giving talented filmmakers the opportunity of a lifetime – a first step in an industry that can be notoriously difficult to break into. It’s a platform that...

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The January Show – A Different Kind of Theatre Experience

Posted by Derek Flynn on 8 May 2017.

A few weeks ago in Garter Lane Arts Theatre in Waterford, audiences were treated to a somewhat different piece of theatre. Titled The January Show, this piece could ostensibly be called a play, but the clue is in the title. The January Show – written and directed by Waterford writer, Anna Jordan – is more than a play. It is indeed a “show”, featuring drama, music, dance, and spoken word – with a live band...

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Music & Me – Kerrie O’ Brien

Posted by Derek Flynn on 24 April 2017.

What are your earliest musical memories? My grandmother singing in the kitchen in the mornings. And my mother blaring Elkie Brooks and Mary Black in the car. Who or what were your musical influences growing up and why? Up until the age of about twelve I remember most of my knowledge and memories of music being connected to MTV videos – I vividly remember the first time seeing the Run DMC video It’s Like That,...

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Music & Me – Catherine Ryan Howard

Posted by Derek Flynn on 10 April 2017.

What are your earliest musical memories? I was a dedicated disco-dancer when I was a child (um, yes – Munster Disco-Dancing Champion Under 8 Category 1991, thanks for asking) so pop music was a huge part of my childhood. The earliest music I remember was Madonna and Michael Jackson. I did actually think that Madonna and MJ were the only pop-stars in the world; it was a while before I realised there were other people...

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“Mental” – A New Short Story Collection by Waterford Writer Orla Shanaghy

Posted by Derek Flynn on 30 March 2017.

Orla Shanaghy can remember vividly the moment she realised she wanted to be an author. “When I was about eight years old, I had a series of Ladybird books called ‘The Garden Gang’. The books were about these cute fruit and vegetable characters. But it wasn’t so much the content of the books that interested me; it was the picture of the author on the back cover. Her name was Jayne Fisher and she was...

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Music & Me – Nuala O’ Connor

Posted by Derek Flynn on 20 March 2017.

“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 guest is Nuala O’ Connor. What are your earliest musical memories? My Da singing to us, rude songs (A sole, A sole, A soldier I would be…). Singing hymns in the car and at mass (we were charismatics so it was all very touchy-feely, ‘Kumbaya My Lord’ etc.). Singing Irish songs at school...

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Samuel Beckett and Foxrock

Posted by Derek Flynn on 27 February 2017.

Samuel Beckett, Nobel Laureate is regarded as one of the world’s greatest writers but in Dublin, a UNESCO City of Literature, his strong connection with the city is a matter of pride. He was born in his family’s home on Kerrymount Avenue in Foxrock on Good Friday 13th April 1906 and was educated in Dublin before being sent to Portora Royal School in Enniskillen. He entered Trinity College Dublin in 1923, having spent much of...

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Music & Me – Ethel Rohan

Posted by Derek Flynn on 13 February 2017.

“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 guest is Ethel Rohan. Ethel is the author of The Weight of Him, a debut novel first published in the United States (St. Martin’s Press, February 14, 2017) and forthcoming in the UK from Atlantic Books, June 1, 2017. Raised in Dublin, she lives in San Francisco, California. What are your...

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Lily Allen’s “Donald Trump” Playlist

Posted by Derek Flynn on 24 January 2017.

Unless you’ve been held captive in a dungeon for the past few days, you can’t have missed the fact that a certain orange business mogul was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States. I think it’s fair to say that a few people were less than enamoured by this development. One of those people was singer, Lily Allen. To “commemorate” Trump’s inauguration, Allen put together a little Spotify playlist entitled, “He’s Got the...

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