Listings: Hay Festival Kells, Focal Literary Festival, John Hewitt summer school

Kavanagh poetry fellowship details announced and Jeeves comes to the Westin

Festival ready Meath

Waving goodbye to the Body & Soul mob, the Royal County prepares for another festival this weekend as the literary crowd descend for Hay Festival Kells. Marian Keyes, Anne Enright and Roddy Doyle are among the Irish authors on the programme. Other highlights include bestselling author Lynda La Plante, Booker winner Ben Okri and the poet Paul Durcan. More home-grown literary talent sees Sara Baume, Michael Harding, Colin Barrett and Paul Murray among the line-up. For music fans, Brian Eno will talk "freeganism and food" at an environmentally themed event. Cinema, history, fashion and food are also covered, with the full programme available here.

Focal Literary Festival

The second Focal Literary Festival takes place in Wexford this weekend, with Claudia Carroll, Rachael English and crime writer Louise Phillips among the authors on the billing. Book launches, panel discussions, children's events, poetry readings and trad sessions will be held in a number of venues around Enniscorthy from Friday, June 26th - Sunday, June 28th. Other authors appearing at the festival include Lorna Sixsmith, Paul O'Brien, Paul O'Reilly and Carmel Harrington. A full weekend ticket at €50 includes entry to all events and a light lunch on the Saturday. Individual events from €5 - €10, with more information at

Summer school in Armagh

The 28th John Hewitt International Summer School, a five-day celebration of culture and creativity, takes place from Monday, July 27th at the Market Place Theatre & Arts Centre in County Armagh. Inspired by the cross-community ideals of the poet John Hewitt, the school's theme this year is 'Coming to Terms: learning to live with difference', which aims to explore issues of religion, race and gender within society. A programme of 35 events will feature over 50 artists. Highlights include "a truly unique musical performance" with Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Paul Muldoon playing guitar alongside Barry Devlin, Jim Lockhart, Johnny Fean of Horslips and special guest Paul Brady.

Poet and essayist Tess Gallagher will read from her most recent work and reflect on her years with her late husband, the American short story writer Raymond Carver. The broadcaster and journalist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown will debate the recent racist attacks in Northern Ireland and read from her most recent publication, Refusing the Veil. Creative writing workshops with crime novelist Anthony J. Quinn and Being Human BBC screenwriter Daragh Carville are already proving popular. Tickets can be booked through The Market Place Theatre Box Office by calling 028 3752 1821 or by booking online: View the full programme at

Kavanagh Fellowship

The Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellowship will be awarded in October 2015 by the Trustees of the Estate of Katherine Kavanagh. The €8,000 fellowship is specifically for Irish poets in their middle years. In order to be eligible, poets must have published a body of work, and show that they are in particular need of assistance. Poets who think they may be entitled to apply are advised to request further information on the guidelines by writing to the Trustees at 3, Selskar Terrace, Ranelagh, Dublin 6. There is no application form, but applicants will be asked to supply documentary evidence of age, financial need and Irish citizenship. They will also be asked to supply copies of a substantial number of publications. The deadline for applications is August 28th. Further information at:

Jeeves at The Westin

Never have the time to read at home? A new service by The Westin Dublin organises room delivery of books for its guests. The Book Butler, in partnership with Eason, will allow guests to choose from a hand-picked list of books from 10 top genres as recommended by the bookseller. The service promises “a truly personalised literary experience”, with a number of recently refurbished Library Suites within the hotel offering suitable accommodation. Guests can take their book to suites named after William Butler Yeats, Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde. If there’s a specific book that the hotel does not stock, the concierge will contact Eason to order the book, with same day delivery to the guest’s room once an order is placed before 2pm. Eason offer an extensive range of over 30,000 books in their flagship O’Connell Street store. The Westin Book Butler service is complimentary, costing only the price of the book upon check out.

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