2023 Summer School
In-person Workshops at the Irish Writers Centre: July 3rd to July 7th 2023
Fiction: Mia Gallagher | Non-Fiction: Roisin Kiberd | Poetry: Annemarie Ní Churreáin
Online Workshops via Zoom: July 10th to July 14th 2023
Fiction: Wendy Erskine, Mary Morrissy and Joanna Walsh
Non-Fiction: Arnold Thomas Fanning | Poetry: Martina Evans
Open for applications: Monday April 3rd to Tuesday April 18th 2023
Online information session: Tuesday April 4th 7pm
This is aimed at anyone who is interesting applying for a place at the summer school. Several of the workshop leaders will join us to answer any questions you might have about the workshops or about making an application. Sign up here.
The principal aim of the summer school programme is to allow people to develop their writing practice through intensive engagement with groups of similarly motivated individuals. Participating writers put forward two pieces of work-in-progress to be read and discussed within each workshop group.
The in-person workshops will have no more than 10 participants.
The online workshops will have no more than 6 participants in the fiction and non-fiction workshop groups. We can accommodate up to 12 participants in the poetry workshop group. Participants are expected to attend all of the workshop sessions.
Workshop places will be offered based on work submitted. All submissions will be read by the workshop group leaders.
We recommend that you submit material for the summer school that you have already worked on for some time. It should be work that is beyond the first-draft stage, but which you know you still need help with. The close attention your work receives during the workshops will be an opportunity for you to approach it again with fresh eyes.
–2 poems with your application
–3 to 4 poems to be submitted after you’ve been offered a place
Fiction and Non-fiction Workshops
–Up to 1,000 words or first 3 pages from a work-in-progress with your application
–Participants will then be invited to submit two pieces of work-in-progress, each being between ca. 2000 and ca. 6000 words. These can be: two stories; two essays; two extracts from a novel or a non-fiction manuscript; a story AND a novel extract if you are attempting to write both.
Writers will be asked to submit their works-in-progress two weeks before the summer school begins. All of the work is then shared among the participants in each workshop and is to be read in advance.
Fiction with Mia Gallagher
Non-fiction with Roisin Kiberd
Poetry with Annemarie Ní Churreáin
July 3rd to July 7th
10am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday
In-person workshops will take place in the Irish Writers Centre in Dublin.
Participants are responsible for organising their own travel and accommodation. In addition to the workshops, the programme will include a session with a visiting writer for each group, plus a Q&A with The Stinging Fly’s editors.
Fiction with Wendy Erskine, Mary Morrissy and Joanna Walsh
Non-fiction and memoir with Arnold Thomas Fanning
Poetry with Martina Evans
July 10th to July 14th
10am to 1pm Monday to Friday
(Fiction with Wendy Erskine or Mary Morrissy + Non-fiction + poetry)
4pm to 7pm Monday to Friday
(Fiction with Joanna Walsh)
Afternoon events: In addition to the workshop schedule, we will have a strand of afternoon events from 2.15 to 3.45pm Wednesday to Friday for all groups. These will include talks by guest writers, plus a Q&A with the editors of The Stinging Fly. Attendance at the afternoon events is encouraged but not essential.
In-person Workshops (3 – 7 July)
The tuition fee for each workshop is €450.
The concession rate for anyone on low income is €300.
Online Workshops (10 – 14 July)
The tuition fee for each workshop is €375.
The concession rate for anyone on low income is €250.
Fees are payable only when a place has been offered and you have accepted the offer. We will ask for a deposit of €100 to be paid by Friday 19th May. Fees must be paid in full by Friday 9th June.
Thanks to the support we receive from the Arts Council and to the continued generosity of our patrons, we are in a position to offer eight free places at the summer school, one in each workshop. These will be awarded to writers who are either unwaged or on low income. To be considered for a free place, all you need to do is follow the general guidelines below and tick the box on the submission form.
The Stinging Fly is open to submissions from writers of all backgrounds. We are committed to pursuing a proactive approach to diversity and inclusiveness. We strongly encourage writers from underrepresented areas of society to apply. If you are such a writer, we encourage you to join us. If you know such writers, please spread the word (with our thanks). And if you have any queries about this, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
To apply for a place:
Applications for places will be accepted via Submittable between Monday 3 April and Tuesday 18 April. The application process is the same for the in-person workshops and for the online workshops.
You can apply for both an in-person workshop and an online workshop if you wish.
Send us a sample of your work. We want to read 2 poems or 1,000 words of fiction/non-fiction.
All applicants must supply a cover note with details of their current writing project(s). We will ask you to tell us which aspects of your writing you need most help with and why you want to take part in the summer school.
All submissions should ideally be in Word doc or docx format. Poets, please include both your poems in one document.
We will aim to send out offers of places no later than Wednesday 10 May. Participants will be asked to confirm their places and pay their deposits as soon as possible.
About our tutors:
Wendy Erskine (Fiction | Online) lives in Belfast. Dance Move, her second collection of short stories, was published last year and was shortlisted for the Edge Hill Prize. Sweet Home (2018), her debut collection, won the Butler Literary Award and was shortlisted for the Edge Hill Prize and the Republic of Consciousness Prize. Wendy has delivered workshops and masterclasses for the West Cork Literary Festival, the Faber Academy, and New Writing South among others. She was a 2021–22 Seamus Heaney Fellow at Queen’s University Belfast.
Martina Evans (Poetry | Online) grew up in County Cork and trained in St Vincents Dublin as a radiographer before moving to London in 1988. She is the author of twelve books of poetry and prose. Now We Can Talk Openly About Men (Carcanet 2018) was shortlisted for the 2019 Irish Times Poetry Now Award, the Pigott Poetry Prize and the Roehampton Poetry Prize and was an Observer, TLS and Irish Times Book of the Year. American Mules, (Carcanet 2021) won the Pigott Poetry Prize in 2022 and was a TLS and Sunday Independent Book of the Year for 2021. The Coming Thing, a sequel to her narrative poem Petrol (2012) will be published by Carcanet in September 2023. She is an Irish Times poetry critic.
Arnold Thomas Fanning (Non-fiction | Online) has had work published in The Dublin Review, Banshee, gorse, The Lonely Crowd, The Stinging Fly, Correspondences: An Anthology to Call for an End to Direct Provision, Empty House: Poetry and Prose on the Climate Crisis, Show Your Work: Essays from The Dublin Review, & elsewhere. His work has also been frequently broadcast on radio, most recently for Keywords on RTÉ Radio 1. Mind on Fire: A Memoir of Madness and Recovery, was published in 2018 and shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize 2019.
Mia Gallagher (Fiction | In-person) is the author of the novels HellFire (Penguin Ireland, 2006) and Beautiful Pictures of the Lost Homeland (New Island, 2016), the short-story collection Shift (New Island, 2018), and the bilingual Dubliners (2022, co-authored with artist Mario Sughi). She is a contributing editor of The Stinging Fly, and in 2018 was elected as a member of Aosdána. She has been mentoring fiction writers and facilitating workshops in creative writing since 2007.
Roisin Kiberd (Non-fiction | In-person)has written essays and features for the The Stinging Fly, The Dublin Review, Winter Papers, The White Review, The Guardian and Vice, among other places. Her first book, The Disconnect: A Personal Journey Through the Internet was published by Serpent’s Tail in 2021. Roisin is a contributing editor of The Stinging Fly and lectures in creative writing at the University of Galway.
Mary Morrissy (Fiction | Online) is the author of three novels, Mother of Pearl, The Pretender and The Rising of Bella Casey, and two collections of short stories, A Lazy Eye and Prosperity Drive. She has 20 years experience of teaching creative writing at university level in the US and Ireland. Until May 2020, she was the associate director of creative writing at University College Cork, teaching on the MA in Creative Writing and leading undergraduate teaching of creative writing. She now offers one-to-one creative mentoring and editing and appraisal services for writers.
Annemarie Ní Churreáin (Poetry | In-person) is a poet from the Donegal Gaeltacht. Her publications include Bloodroot (Doire Press, 2017), Town (The Salvage Press, 2018) and The Poison Glen (The Gallery Press, 2021). A recipient of The Arts Council’s Next Generation Artist Award and a co-recipient of The Markievicz Award, she is the Guest Editor of Poetry Ireland Review Issue 140. Annemarie has received literary fellowships from the Jack Kerouac House in Florida and Akademie Schloss Solitude in Germany. She has delivered readings and workshops throughout Ireland, Europe and the US. In 2023 she is Writer in Residence at Reindhardt University in Atlanta, Georgia. More info www.studiotwentyfive.com.
Joanna Walsh (Fiction | Online) is a multidisciplinary writer for print, digital and performance. The author of eleven books (several co-written with AI), including four collections of short stories and two novels, her publishers include Semiotext(e), Bloomsbury and Verso. She also works as an editor and university teacher. She is a Markievicz Awardee in the Republic of Ireland and a UK Arts Foundation fellow. She founded and ran the Twitter campaign @read_women (2014-18), described by the New York Times as ‘a rallying cry for equal treatment for women writers’. She currently runs @noentry_arts.