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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: E.R. Murray

Posted by Derek Flynn on 12 November 2015.

“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 E. R. Murray, whose debut novel The Book of Learning (on sale now!) has been chosen for the “2016 Citywide Reading for Children” campaign. What are your earliest musical memories? My mother was a TV addict so there wasn’t much music growing up. She was also alcoholic, and the only...

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Music & Me: Joseph O’Connor

Posted by Derek Flynn on 2 November 2015.

“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 “Drivetime” contributor and prolific novelist, Joseph O’ Connor, whose many works include Star of the Sea and, his latest, The Thrill Of It All, the tale of the rise and fall of a fictional ’80s rock band. What are your earliest musical memories? I can just about remember hearing...

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The Art of Never Giving Up

Posted by Derek Flynn on 21 October 2015.

To become a published writer requires talent. This is a given. But – equally – it also requires another “T” word – tenacity. Indeed, it could be said that if half the battle to becoming a writer requires mastering the art of writing, the other half requires mastering the art of never giving up. With this in mind, I came across two articles this past week that I think will inspire even the most disheartened...

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Music & Me: Louise Phillips

Posted by Derek Flynn on 12 October 2015.

“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 Louise Phillips. Louise is the bestselling author of four psychological crime thrillers. Her new novel, The Game Changer, is on sale now. What are your earliest musical memories? Hearing the singer Mario Lanza had to be one of the first. He was a favourite of my Dad’s, an actor with a...

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Kevin Barry Makes Shortlist For Goldsmiths Prize 2015

Posted by Derek Flynn on 5 October 2015.

The shortlist for the 2015 Goldsmiths Prize has just been announced and includes ‘Beatlebone’ by Irish author, Kevin Barry. The story of John Lennon’s visit to Dorinish – the Irish island he owned in Clew Bay – in 1978, the book will be published later this month by Canongate. The blurb on the book is as follows: “He will spend three days alone on his island. That is all that he asks . . ....

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Music & Me: Louise O’ Neill

Posted by Derek Flynn on 17 September 2015.

“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 Louise O’ Neill. Louise’s debut novel, Only Ever Yours, has won numerous awards and the film rights were recently sold. Her new novel, the critically-acclaimed, Asking For It, is on sale now. What are your earliest musical memories? My mother had a Carly Simon tape that she would play in the car. I...

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Music & Me: Caroline Finnerty

Posted by Derek Flynn on 7 September 2015.

“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 Caroline Finnerty. Caroline’s new novel, My Sister’s Child, is on sale now. What are your earliest musical memories? I have lots of fragmented memories of different songs. I remember singing along to “Brown Girl in the Ring’ by Boney M and thinking that the song was actually written about me....

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The Hilarious Art of Book Design

Posted by Derek Flynn on 15 August 2015.

For any authors interested in what goes on behind the scenes designing books, this TED Talk by Chip Kidd of Knopf publishers is fascinating.

The Challenge in Producing New Writing for the Stage

Posted by Derek Flynn on 4 August 2015.

This week’s Songbook is a guest post by Matthew Ralli, a writer, actor, and founder of “Speckintime” – a theatre company that specialises in producing new writing for stage.  They say writing a great book is the easy part. Getting it published and into people’s hands is an even harder task. The same applies to playwriting. Having written a rewarding play, how do you go about getting it staged? Unless you are lucky enough to be commissioned...

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JP Donleavy & “The Ginger Man” At 60

Posted by Derek Flynn on 25 July 2015.

This week’s blog is a guest post by Noel Shine. It was never going to be easy getting into Trinity College Dublin, but I was determined. Alas, I failed spectacularly. The security man at the back gate rumbled me as an interloper and kindly suggested that I avail of Dublin’s extortionate on-street parking system. As fate would have it, I parked near ‘The Ginger Man’ pub. A neat little south-side establishment which had already sprung into...

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