Sara Baume at UL; Neil Hegarty turns to fiction; Patrick Gale in Belfast

Adrian McKinty signs on wavy line; Ó Bhéal Winter Warmer; Peter McDonald at TCD; Allingham Festival

Sara Baume at UL

Sara Baume's Spill Simmer Falter Wither has been announced as the 2015/16 featured novel for UL One Campus, One Book. Baume will read from her work and answer questions at an event introduced by fellow author Joseph O'Connor, Frank McCourt Professor of Creative Writing at UL, who described the novel as "the most impressive debut I've read in years". The reading will take place on Wednesday, November 18th, at 4pm in the Millstream Common Room, University of Limerick.

UL One Campus, One Book is a UL initiative, led by the Regional Writing Centre and the Centre for Teaching and Learning, encouraging students and staff to read the same book and talk to one another about it. Baume’s debut novel won The Rooney Prize for Irish Literature for 2015 and was long listed for the Guardian First Book Award. She won the Hennessy New Irish Writing Award earlier in 2015, just a month after her novel was published.

Serpent’s Tail acquires new Adrian McKinty novel


Rebecca Gray, commissioning editor at Serpent’s Tail, has bought world rights to the sixth novel in Irish crime writer Adrian McKinty’s Sean Duffy series. Police at the Station and They Don’t Look Friendly will be published in January 2017. Rain Dogs, the fifth in the 100,000+ selling series, will be published next January.

McKinty said: “After a glassy-eyed pub crawl through Soho with the Serpent’s Tail lot I found that I had signed a contract for a sixth Sean Duffy novel. Apparently the thing was iron-clad and unassailable which is why I find myself jurisprudentially chained to my laptop and hard at work on Police at the Station and They Don’t Look Friendly – a title that brings me nine words closer to the contract’s merciful termination. But seriously, I couldn’t be happier to be working again with them for the newest Sean Duffy novel.”

Gray said: “After an evening out with Adrian we woke up to a contract, signed and sealed, that he now claims we forced him to sign. I’m not above cajoling authors to do things they’re not sure about, but in this case the evidence suggests he wants to write this book as much as we want to read it. We love him – and his undeniably attractive anti-hero Sean Duffy – perhaps significantly more than he says he loves us, but I like to think he’s just playing it cool. Either way, we’ve gone all out for McKinty and Duffy, and will be doing so for Rain Dogs in January 2016, and then for Police At The Station And They Don’t Look Friendly the year after. As soon as we’ve worked out how to fit the title on the cover.”

From biography to fiction

Having published his life of Sir David Frost in September, Neil Hegarty is now looking forward to the appearance of his first novel. The Inch Levels explores a landscape of secrets and silence in two generations of a family living on the Irish border; it will be published in 2016 by Head of Zeus, which describes Hegarty's book as "astonishing".

Patrick Gale in Belfast

As part of Belfast's Outburst Queer Arts festival, which runs from November 12th to 21st, Patrick Gale will be answering questions and reading from his latest work, A Place Called Winter, the story of a 1900s Canadian settler dealing with his sexuality. The event will be held on Monday, November 16th, at 6.30pm, in Belfast Central Library.

Libraries NI have also stocked up on copies of the book for Outburst so you can borrow one for free and read it before coming along.

Gale has written 15 novels, including the bestselling Rough Music and the superb Notes from an Exhibition. His 14th novel, A Perfectly Good Man, won a Green Carnation award and was a favourite recommendation among Guardian readers in the paper’s end of year round-up. He is currently writing an original, gay- themed, part-historical drama for BBC1 called Man in an Orange Shirt and adapting Edith Wharton’s The Age of Innocence for BBC2.

Ó Bhéal Winter Warmer

The Ó Bhéal Winter Warmer Festival is taking place from November 20th–21st at Sample Studios Amphitheatre, Sullivan's Quay, Cork, with 22 poets reading and performing over two days. The festival also features poetry-films, dance-poetry, poetry set to various music, including sean-nós and a closed-mic for ten regular Ó Bhéal poets.

Peter McDonald at TCD

The School of English, Trinity College Dublin will host a poetry reading by Peter McDonald on Tuesday, November 17th, at 7pm, in the Jonathan Swift Theatre. The Belfast-born writer is the author of five volumes of poetry, as well as being an academic and critic. His Collected Poems (2012) was praised in The Irish Times as “hugely impressive... not just rich but endlessly varied and subtle... marvellous”. His sixth collection of poetry appears next year, along with his new verse translation of the Greek Homeric Hymns. He is professor of British and Irish poetry in the University of Oxford. Admission free.

Allingham Festival

The 2015 Allingham Festival opens today and runs till November 8th in Ballyshannon, bringing international celebrities to south Donegal from the worlds of music, literature and enterprise.

Jessica Traynor, literary manager of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, will reflect on the links between William Allingham and William Butler Yeats. Readers and writers will enjoy conversational seminars with poet Jane Clarke and with travel writer and documentary filmmaker Manchán Magan. Wes Sewell, formerly of Marvel Comics and now with the Toronto special-effects firm SpinVFX, will speak about the growing career opportunities in this extraordinary field.

Singer-songwriter Chanele McGuinness will headline the Allingham Concert. Ballyshannon’s Mark Boyle, who has become an international celebrity as The Moneyless Man, will share his philosophy and experience in conversation with journalist Sean Perry. Hands-on craft workshops and world-class musical entertainment make the 2015 Allingham Festival a “must” for all ages. Festival details and pre-event bookings are found on-line at

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