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

Imagining Handel with Swift


Director of Creative Writing, Dr Eibhear Walshe, will be talking about his  historical novel on Handel at the forthcoming Swift Symposium in The Deanery, St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin on Saturday, October 15, when he will discuss his portrayal of Swift and his imagining of a meeting between the two men on the morning of the first performance of Messiah in Fishamble Street in April 1742.  See http://www.stpatrickscathedral.ie/event/swift/


Frank O'Connor Fellow joins our team


Canadian author Zsuzsi Gartner, the inaugural Frank O’Connor International Short Story Fellow for the City of Cork, will be teaching on the MA in Creative Writing this semester.  The fellowship - sponsored by the Munster Literature Centre - helps to give our MA an international dimension.

The fellowship, in its first year, replaces the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Prize and encourages international writers to become involved in the cultural life of the city for three months.  Applications are now open for next year's fellowship - http://www.munsterlit.ie.

Zsuzsi is leading a module on the short story and will be giving a reading on campus during her stay in Cork.

Gartner - http://www.zsuzsigartner.com/  -  is the author of the acclaimed story collection All the Anxious Girls on Earth, and editor of the bestselling anthology Darwin’s Bastards: Astounding Tales from Tomorrow. Her most recent book, Better Living through Plastic Explosives, was a finalist for the prestigious Scotiabank Giller Prize. She is the winner of several National Magazine Awards including a silver in 2015 for fiction.

Her short stories have been widely anthologized, including in The Penguin Book of Canadian Humour, Best Canadian Stories 2010 and 2011, and Imaginarium, and broadcast on CBC in Canada and NPR in the U.S.

She has taught on the MFA at the University of British Columbia, and has also mentored numerous writers through the Banff Centre for the Arts various writing programmes.  She is also the founder and director of Writers Adventure Camp at The Point in Whistler, BC, now in its third year.


Revisiting Sean O'Casey

ploughandstarsAssociate Director of Creative Writing Mary Morrissy will take part in a day-long conference – In Depth: The Dublin Plays of Sean O’Casey - at the National Theatre London on Saturday, September 24.

Prof James Moran of Nottingham University and Dr Nichoals Grene of Trinity College Dublin will join Mary to explore The Shadow of a Gunman, Juno and the Paycock and The Plough and the Stars. The conference will examine the circumstances of the original performances of the plays, how they related to O’Casey’s own life, and will place the plays in the context of Ireland’s revolutionary decade.

Mary’s novel, The Rising of Bella Casey, is a re-imagining of the life of Bella Casey, the playwright’s sister and dramatizes the writing of O’Casey’s six volumes of autobiography. Episodes and characters from the Dublin plays are woven into the narrative. The novel was nominated for the Dublin Impac Award in 2014.

(Poster image courtesy of the Irish Classical Theatre Company, Buffalo, New York)

Students and staff do us proud


A room of one's own - Glenville Park

Creative writing students have been busy over the summer - and not just working on their dissertations.  The class of 2015/16 have been getting published out there in the real world. MA student  Mark Kelleher led the posse with his 12 episode soap "Scattered" commissioned by the Evening Echo as part of the Writing for Media module, which ran in the paper and on the Echo website during August.

This proved such a success that the Echo is publishing a second soap from that class - "Pure Awkward" by Kelly Warburton - currently running.  Check it out on http://www. eveningecho.ie

Meanwhile, Nora Shychuk's story "Ghosts in a Small Town" has been accepted for publication by The Rose literary magazine. http://www.the rosemagazine.com.This is the title story of the collection she's working on for her thesis. Two of our PhD students, Fiona Whyte and Niamh Prior will have fiction and poetry appearing in  the forthcoming edition of The Holly Bough http://www.facebook.com/corkhollybough

Not to be outdone, our newly appointed faculty poet Leanne O'Sullivan, read at the Struga International Poetry Festival in Macedonia in August. The Struga festival is a major event and the festival has awarded some of the world's most eminent literary figures, including several Nobel Prize winners, such as Joseph Brodsky, Pablo Neruda and Seamus Heaney.http://www.svp.org.mk

Upcoming on September 17, Laura McKenna, another of our  PhD creative writing students,  will lead a workshop at Glenville Park, Cork. Glenville is an 18th century house full of history and faded grandeur. Nothing faded about Laura's workshop, however, which is suitable for all writers including beginners.

For more information contact: http://silviabencejones@hotmail.com

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