At Provost House, Trinity College, at the awarding of the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature were Patricia Rooney, the winner Colin Barrett and former US ambassador to Ireland, Dan Rooney. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

There was at least one happy Mayo man on the planet last night, even if he has listed football as one of his interests, “playing as well as watching.(...)

‘To Flannery O’Connor, faith was fragile and thinking you had lost your faith was “an experience that in the long run belongs to faith”.’ Photograph:  APIC/Getty Images

The American novelist and short-story writer Flannery O’Connor died 50 years ago on August 3rd. A significant voice in US fiction, she is also highly (...)

Joseph O’Connor: his advice  to an aspiring author? “Read Orwell. And get a job.” Photograph: Frank Miller

Joseph O’Connor is the author of eight novels: Cowboys and Indians (short-listed for the Whitbread Prize), Desperadoes, The Salesman, Inishowen, St(...)

Colin Barrett: bends language to expose new angles

In a Dublin cafe, a few minutes into an interview with Colin Barrett, he does that thing all storytellers do without realising: he imparts an innocuou(...)

The stories and novels of the Appalachian writer Ron Rash are steeped in the culture of the American south, but if you’re thinking Rhett Butler and Sc(...)