Irish Times Books Podcast: Sinéad Gleeson and Sarah Davis-Goff

The authors of ‘Constellations’ and ‘Last Ones Left Alive’ talk about their debuts

April’s Irish Times Books Podcast features interviews with Sinéad Gleeson about her acclaimed collection of personal essays, Constellations, and Sarah Davis-Goff, co-founder of Tramp Press, about her own first novel, Last Ones Left Alive, a dystopian novel set in the west of Ireland in the near future.

Gleeson, a long-time presenter of the Book Show on RTÉ Radio, has edited two influential anthologies of short stories by Irish women writers, The Long Gaze Back and The Glass Shore. Now she makes her debut as an author in her own right with Constellations, a collection of essays about the female body, hew personal experiences and her reading of the works of other female artists.

She reads a passage from A Wound Gives Off its Own Light, which explores the intersection of illness and creativity in the works of Frida Kahlo, Lucy Grealy, Jo Spence, among others, and then discusses her work.

Since it was set up in 2014, Tramp Press has achieved phenomenal success, despite or perhaps because it has published so few titles, just two or three a year. It has published two of the past three winners of the Irish Book of the Year Award, Notes to Self by Emilie Pine last year and Solar Bones by Mike McCormack, which went on to win the International Dublin Literary Award and be longlisted for the Man Booker. It has also given a debut to talents such as Sara Baume, published for the first time on this side of the Atlantuc US authors Jade Sharma and Sarah Henstra and reissued books by neglected authors such as Dorothy Macardle and Maeve Kelly.

Here she talks to Laura Slattery.

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