Welcome to Creative Writing at UCC

This site is a road map to the world of creative writing at UCC.  The School of English offers creative writing at undergraduate, Masters and PhD level. See what we do – check out our blog written by students, see the major names in literature who visit our campus, and explore the numerous courses we offer that redefine and broaden what it is to be a 21st century creative writer. 

News and Events

Time travel in Cork's cafés

Congratulations to MA Writing for Media student Christine Kannapel, who is the first of two students  commissioned this year by the Evening Echo to write a fictional serial.  Entitled "One Summer in Cork", the serial features mystery and history when an American student is transported back to Cork in the 1790s, and appears under the newspaper's "Summer Soap" banner.  

The serial (in 12 episodes) has been featuring in the Echo for the past fortnight. Today is the final episode but you can binge-read the entire serial on the Evening Echo website - https://www.echolive.ie/

Primarily a poet, Christine (23) came to study at UCC having admired Leanne O'Sullivan's poetry. (Leanne leads the MA's poetry modules.)   She hails from Salt Lake City, Utah.  She talks about her writing process in this interview in the Echo in which she explains she did most of her writing during her year-long MA in Cork's cafés. - https://www.echolive.ie/corklives/I-do-my-writing-in-Corks-cafes-be990dd7-31c6-4805-a63d-17c4c1278fbf-ds

The Summer Soap serial project, now in its fifth year, is the product of a co-operative arrangement between the MACW's Writing for Media module, led by Mary Morrissy, and the Evening Echo, co-ordinated by Features Editor, John Dolan. 

A second serial by another student from the course, Beau Williams, will run in the newspaper and on the website in August. 

The experience of writing

Associate Director of Creative Writing Mary Morrissy appears in this new anthology on the process of writing from Arlen House. The Danger and the Glory: Irish Authors on the Art of Writing is a fat volume - 450 pages - crammed with essays from 61 Irish writers documenting their writing experiences and their experience of writing.  

The book was edited by Dr Hedwig Schwall, director of the Leuven Centre for Irish Studies and project director of EFACIS (European Federation of Associations and Centres of Irish Studies) - - and grew out of a website - https://www.efacis.eu/- where many of these essays first appeared.

The triggering inspiration for the project was "Fiction and the Dream"  an essay by John Banville, who will be a visiting professor at the School of English in the coming year. Other writers with UCC associations who appear in the volume include William Wall, Billy O'Callaghan, Danny Denton, Mary O'Donnell, Glenn Patterson  and Danielle McLaughlin.  The  introduction is by journalist and Seamus  Heaney biographer, Fintan O'Toole

The book will be celebrated at a special event hosted by the IASIL conference  - http://www.iasil.org/category/conference-2019/ - at  the Burke Theatre, Trinity College Dublin, @ 5.30pm on Tuesday, July 23. The Irish ambassador to Belgium, Ms Helena Nolan, who supported the project, will attend as will John Banville, Fintan O’Toole and the volume's editor, Hedwig Schwall.

The cover image is by Belfast artist Rita Duffy


Warmest congratulations to Niamh Prior and Laura McKenna !


Congratulations to Dr Laura McKenna and Dr Niamh Prior, pictured here at today's graduation ceremony in UCC with Eibhear Walshe.

A wonderful achievement for two very talented writers, the first two students to graduate with Doctorates in Creative Writing by research.

New Writer-in-Residence and Frank O'Connor Short Story Fellow appointed

The School of English is delighted to announce that Cork writer Danny Denton is to be this year's UCC/Arts Council  Writer-in-Residence and that the British novelist and short story writer Sara Maitland has been appointed as the 2019 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Fellow.  The fellowship, now in its fourth year, is sponsored by Cork City council and the Munster Literature Centre.

Danny Denton is a writer from Passage West, Co. Cork, with a BA in English & Philosophy from UCC, and an MA in Writing from The National University of Ireland, Galway. His first novel, The Earlie King & The Kid In Yellow, was published by Granta Books in 2018, and nominated for ‘Newcomer of the Year’ at the Irish Book Awards. Among other publications, his work has appeared in The Stinging Fly, Southword, Granta, Winter Papers, The Dublin Review, Tate Etc, The Guardian, The Irish Times, Architecture Ireland and The Big Issue. Since December 2018, he has been a guest editor of The Stinging Fly literary journal. 

Sara Maitland was born in London and attended Oxford University, where she read English. Her first novel Daughter of Jerusalem won the Somerset Maugham Award in 1979. Since then she has written five more novels and several collections of short stories, the most recent in 2013,  Mosswitch and Other Stories. In 2004 she moved to Galloway in Scotland and built herself a house on the moors above Stranraer where she now lives. Since then she has produced an eclectic range of non-fiction including  A Book of Silence, (Granta, 2008) part cultural history, part memoir about her own search for silence, Gossip from the Forest: The Tangled Roots of our Forests and Fairytales (Granta, 2012), and How to be Alone (Picador, 2014).



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