The empty wallet


SIMON TIERNEYlooks at literary activities on a budget

Sweny’s Pharmacy (1 Lincoln Place, Dublin 2, tel: 086-0507 995), which is featured in Joyce’s Ulysses, hosts free reading groups of his work, Monday to Friday at 1pm, Thursday at 7pm and Saturday at 11am. “I haven’t read aloud since I was in primary school,” said one of my fellow readers on the day I attended. Soon he was off, channelling the voice of Joyce in the surroundings of this most atmospheric literary haunt.

The Irish Writers’ Centre (19 Parnell Square, Dublin 1, tel: 01-872 1302) hosts a variety of free literary events. Spoke is the centre’s open mic night, on the third Friday of every month at 7.30pm. Writers, spoken word artists and musicians can perform. Next Friday, poet Maurice Scully is the guest performer.

Ink Slingers Creative Writing

Hour takes place every Saturday at 1.30pm. Writing exercises and help with the generation of ideas are all part of these sessions which attempt to create a warm atmosphere in which to write.

There are a number of literary events lined up for Culture Night. next Friday, September 21st. The Hole in the Wall (17 High Street, Kilkenny city) is hosting an evening on Sustainable Writing for poets at 6pm. Poets Michael Cody and Kim Fryatt will be offering advice on publishing, education and funding.

Noel O’Grady will be performing free at the James Joyce Centre (35 North Great Georges Street, Dublin 1, tel: 01-8788 547) in three slots: 6pm, 7.30pm and 9pm. O’Grady introduces the audience to the countless musical references in Joyce’s work and will be singing a number of pieces too. To book, email

Last but not least . . .

Barefoot running is becoming more and more popular in Ireland, as people try to engage with the practices of the Tarahumara people of Mexico, who still do it today. Barefoot.iedistributes VibramFiveFingers in Ireland. These are minimalist footwear built to replicate the advantages of barefoot running. There are 10 free pairs (normally €79 each) for the first 10 people to email, with “Barefoot Offer” in the subject line.

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