Five years ago I first dipped my toe publicly into writing and began this blog. The following year I decided to go to my first ever writing festival, Wexford Literary Festival. With trepidation I walked in its doors that first day convinced others could spot I was not a writer. After all, what exactly had I written? Who did I think I was, mixing with writers who had actually been published? So I sat quietly and listened and I admit hid a little, but loved every minute. I was hooked and Wexford became an annual fixture in my diary.
How different it was walking in this year. Even though I’ve still not finished my book, I know I’m a writer. In a way it was this very festival which has helped me understand and believe that.
From that very first year the many amazing authors I’ve listened to have inspired me and instead of thinking ‘not me’ I now think ‘why not me?’
This year the lineup of speakers included authors of short stories, crime and science fiction. What better way to spend a day than to sit listening as they spoke of their writing journey or gave us insights into how they write. In between sessions we had plenty time for chats or to sit and listen to new authors reading extracts from their books.
However, something else was going on in the background. If you looked carefully you might have noticed some of those present clutching small folders. If you’d taken the time to eavesdrop beside the tea’s and coffees you’d have heard those folder clutcher’s whisper to each other,
“Are you meeting someone today?”
They were the lucky ones. Those who had been selected to ‘meet the professionals’ one of whom was Nicola Barr from the Bent Agency, the other Paula Campbell from Poolbeg Press, two professionals you’d very much wish to meet.
I may or may not have been one of the chosen few who put their dreams on the table last Saturday. I may now know that Nicola Barr is a wonderful listener and I may well have left a very pleasant meeting with a better understanding of the words of W.B Yeats poem ‘Aedh Wishes For The Cloths Of Heaven,
I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
Thank you to Wexford Literary Festival and in particular an amazing lady, Carmel Harrington. It wasn’t enough that she was chairing this festival, or that she has a new book freshly launched called ‘A Thousand Roads Home,’ (her eighth book and I’m sure another best seller). She also had time to welcome those attending and give words of encouragement and kindness to those of us watching the clock tick towards their meeting. The day was amazing and I never wanted it to end.
And it didn’t. Come 5pm we only had time for a quick change and it was off to a ginterview with Liz Nugent. For those of you not living in Ireland she’s a very successful author of gripping reads such as ‘Unraveling Oliver,’ and her latest, ‘Skin Deep’. What’s a ginterview I hear you ask? It’s an interview with a side of gin in a tea cup. If I ever become famous I will insist on all my interviews being ginterviews.
The ginterview took place in a room in Enniscorthy castle. What a venue! With hundreds of tea lights flickering in the dim light and the assurance the castle has it’s very own poltergeist the scene was set. Carmel’s questions were far from typical and Liz Nugent’s responses most enjoyable. It was a very special finale to a lovely day.
The following morning I set off for home with a fire in my belly to remind me of the inspiring day I’d had and a splitting headache to remind me of the great night.
Well done to all who made the weekend happen. I’m looking forward to next year already.
And just a reminder…
Carmel Harringtons latest book is, ‘A Thousand Roads Home.’
Liz Nugent’s latest book is, ‘Skin Deep’
And my great buddy who kept me company on Saturday night, Andrea Mara’s latest book is, ‘One click’.
All of which I can highly recommend.
(This is not a sponsored post. I just really like their books and think many of you will too.)
16 thoughts on “Wexford Literary Festival.”
I think I would have so much fun in Ireland. Your posts always make me wish I lived there. Sounds like you had a blast from beginning to end.
I sure did Charlene. Never say never you might get over here someday yet.
Your infectious enthusiasm here reminds me why I’ve chosen to embrace my creativity. It adds greatly to the experience of life and sharing it with others can bring everybody some much-needed joy. Thank you for sharing your experiences 💐
Thank you Alex. I too agree it hugely enhances life to have a creative outlet. And it puts us in touch with like minded people. 🙂
Wish I could have been there, Tric. Next year, I always say! I hope your weekend which had things which may or may not have happened will bear very unconditional actual fruit 😉
Thanks Tara. It was a really great weekend and so well organised with a great mix of speakers.
I may or may not let you know how I got on at some time in the future.
every word of this is magic, tric. you have always been a writer.
Thanks Beth. Your encouragement and support over the years has made a difference.
Circumstances dictated the reason for missing out this year Tric, believe me it was planned to attend great to know you had a ball from beGINning to end. Next year all being well.
Aw that’s a pity. Hopefully next year Chris.
What a fabulous way to connect and support. Just another reason I want to live there.
I thought of you when I was in the castle. You would have loved it.
Well…..maybe it will be on the next trip 😉
What a wonderful pose, Tric, and I’m so happy you had a great time, too. Like I’ve mentioned, doing something like this is on my bucket list. I just don’t know when it will get checked off. One good thing though is I’ve been invited to attend a local writing group next week. So, I’m stepping out of my box for that one. We shall see. Anyway, you are an inspiration to those of us who have not experienced this just yet. Not to mention, the Ireland location sounds fabulous, too. 🙂
Sorry it’s taken me an age to reply! Best wishes with your writing group. It’s a great outlet and way to meet like minded people. They are lucky to get you.
No worries, at all, and thanks for your kind words. It was a wonderful experience and I had a warm welcome, not to mention, an abundance of encouragement as everyone loved the poem I shared. It’s the first time I’ve read in public, so a few butterflies accompanied me. But I’m planning on next month and we’ll see how it goes. It’s a step out of the comfort zone and I’m proud of me. One step at a time, right? 😉 You were an inspiration, so thank you! 🌻