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Nora by Nuala O’Connor is the 2022 One Dublin One Book

Dublin City Council and Dublin UNESCO City of Literature are delighted to announce that Nora: A Love Story of Nora Barnacle and James Joyce by Nuala O’Connor as the One Dublin One Book choice for 2022, following on from Leonard and Hungry Paul by Rónán Hession in 2021.

One Dublin One Book aims to encourage everyone in Dublin to read a designated book connected with the capital city during the month of April every year. This annual project is a Dublin City Council initiative, led by Dublin City Libraries, and encourages reading for pleasure. The initiative is also funded by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.

Dublin City Librarian, Mairead Owens, says

“Every year we choose a book that we hope will capture the imaginations of the people of Dublin, of all ages and walks of life, and I know that Nora will prove a rewarding reading experience for all who engage with One Dublin One Book 2022. For the centenary of the publication of Ulysses, it’s important for us to honour the contemporary writers Joyce has inspired, as well as the woman who inspired him. We look forward to working with Nuala O’Connor to create a programme of events next April that we hope will encourage many discussions and conversations.”

A new One Dublin One Book edition of Nora (New Island Books) will be available to borrow from all public libraries nationwide and to buy from all good book shops. There will be events in April to accompany the reading initiative. 

‘I’m honoured and humbled that Dublin City Council has chosen Nora as its One Dublin One Book read for 2022, the Ulysses centenary year. I imagine Nora Barnacle would be as pleased as I am to see her contribution to the life and work of James Joyce celebrated in this way. I’m a proud Dub and this wonderful opportunity has me really looking forward to engaging with library users and readers, all over my home city, in 2022.’ says Nuala O’Connor

The Book

When Nora Barnacle, a twenty-year-old from Galway working as a maid at Finn’s Hotel, meets young James Joyce on a summer’s day in Dublin, she is instantly attracted to him, natural and daring in his company. But she cannot yet imagine the extraordinary life they will share together. All Nora knows is she likes her Jim enough to leave behind family and home, in search of a bigger, more exciting life.

As their family grows, they ricochet from European city to city, making fast friends amongst the greatest artists and writers of their age as well as their wives, and are brought high and low by Jim’s ferocious ambition. But time and time again, Nora is torn between their intense and unwavering desire for each other and the constant anxiety of living hand-to-mouth, often made worse by Jim’s compulsion for company and attention. So, while Jim writes and drinks his way to literary acclaim, Nora provides unflinching support and inspiration, sometimes at the expense of her own happiness, and especially at that of their children, Giorgio and Lucia. Eventually, together, they achieve some longed-for security and stability, but it is hard-won and imperfect to the end.

In sensuous, resonant prose, Nuala O’Connor has conjured the definitive portrait of this strong, passionate and loyal Irishwoman. Nora is a tour de force, an earthy and authentic love letter to Irish literature’s greatest muse.

The Author

Photo by Úna O’Connor

Nuala O’Connor is a novelist, short story writer and poet who was born in Dublin and lives now in Co. Galway with her family.

She has worked as an arts administrator in theatre and in a writers’ centre; as a translator, as a bookseller and also in a university library. She is the author of four previous novels, including Becoming Belle (2018) and Miss Emily (2015), a reimagining of the life of Emily Dickinson, The Closet of Savage Mementos (New Island, 2014), You (New Island, 2010) and six short story collections, her most recent being Joyride to Jupiter (New Island, 2017). She has won many prizes for her short fiction including the Francis MacManus Award, the James Joyce Quarterly Fiction Contest and the UK’s Short Fiction Journal Prize. Nuala’s work has also been nominated for numerous prizes including the Edge Hill Short Story Prize, the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year Award, the Irish Book Awards Novel of the Year and the International Dublin Literary Award. She is editor-in-chief at flash e-zine Splonk. Her fifth novel, Nora, is about Nora Barnacle, wife and muse to James Joyce, and was published in Ireland in April 2021 with New Island.

 

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The Art of Losing by Alice Zeniter Wins 2022 Dublin Literary Award

Dublin City Council announces The Art of Losing by Alice Zeniter, translated by Frank Wynne as winner of the 2022 DUBLIN Literary Award

Monday 23rd May 2022: French author Alice Zeniter and Irish translator Frank Wynne have been announced today as winners of the 2022 DUBLIN Literary Award, sponsored by Dublin City Council, for the novel The Art of Losing (published by Picador, Pan MacMillan). The Award is the world’s largest prize for a single novel published in English.

Uniquely, the Award receives its nominations from public libraries in cities around the globe and recognises both writers and translators. Author Alice Zeniter receives €75,000 and Frank Wynne, as translator, receives €25,000.  Frank was a previous winner in 2002, as translator of Atomised by Michel Houellebecq. The Art of Losing is the 10th novel in translation to win the Dublin Literary Prize.

The winning title was announced today at a special event, at International Literature Festival Dublin, which runs until 29th May.  Lord Mayor and Patron of the Award, Alison Gilliland made the announcement and Owen Keegan, Chief Executive of Dublin City Council, presented the prizes to Alice and Frank at the International Literature Festival Dublin Literary Village in Merrion Square Park.

Lord Mayor and Patron of the Award, Alison Gilliland remarked:

With its themes of colonisation and immigration, The Art of Losing, which follows three generations of an Algerian family from the 1950s to the present day, highlights how literature can increase our understanding of the world. I’d like to congratulate Alice Zeniter and Frank Wynne and thank all who are involved in the award – writers, translators, librarians, publishers and the administrative staff of Dublin City Council.”

Nominated by Bibliothèque publique d’information, in the Pompidou Centre, Paris, the winning novel was chosen from a shortlist of six novels by writers from Ireland, Nigeria, New Zealand, France and Canada. 

The longlist of 79 titles was nominated by 94 libraries from 40 countries across Africa, Europe, Asia, the US, Canada, South America, Australia and New Zealand.

Accepting her award, winner Alice Zeniter said:

When I was writing the Art of Losing, I was almost certain that it was a niche novel. This book’s life, even five years after its release, keeps surprising me. I am really happy and thrilled that the Dublin Literary Award shows me today that this story can be shared with readers from different countries, readers who grew up outside the French post-colonial Empire. Readers that, maybe, had never thought about Algeria before opening the book. How crazy is that?

Translator Frank Wynne:

“In a very real sense, I owe my career as a literary translator to the Dublin Literary Award, a prize I cherish because it makes no distinction between English and translated fiction, treating authors and translators as co-weavers of the  endless braid of literature.”

 Alice Zeniter and Frank Wynne will appear at  ILFDublin, for an in-depth conversation about the novel, with Michael Cronin, Professor of French and Director of the Centre for Literary and Cultural Translation in Trinity College Dublin, this evening (Monday 23rd May) at 6pm in Merrion Square Park (Speranza stage).

Book to attend in person or online :

 https://ilfdublin.com/whats-on/festival/strand/writenow/2022-dublin-literary-award-winner-in-conversation/

Copies of the winning title are available to borrow from Dublin City Libraries and from public libraries throughout Ireland. Readers can also borrow the winning novel on BorrowBox: in eBook format. The French version will also be available to borrow from Dublin City Libraries. Further details about the Award and the winning novel are available on the Award website at www.dublinliteraryaward.ie

The 2022 Judging Panel, which is led by Professor Chris Morash of Trinity College Dublin, and includes Emmanuel Dandaura, Sinéad Moriarty, Clíona Ní Riordáin, Alvin Pang and Victoria White, commented:

The Art of losing offers insights at every scale, from the national and the individual, about the fluid nature of identity; how our relations to place and to each other situate and perhaps free us.”

Alice Zeniter is a French novelist, translator, scriptwriter and director. Her novel Take This Man was published in English by Europa Editions in 2011. Zeniter has won many awards for her work in France, including the Prix Littéraire de la Porte Dorée, the Prix Renaudot des Lycéens and the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens, which was awarded to The Art of Losing. She lives in Brittany.

Frank Wynne is an Irish translator who has translated and published comics and graphic novels and began translating literature in the late 1990s. He has translated works by, among others, Michel Houellebecq, Frédéric Beigbeder and Ahmadou Kourouma, and has won a number of awards, including the DUBLIN Literary Award 2002, Scott Moncrieff Prize and the Premio Valle Inclán.

 

About, The Art of Losing by Alice Zeniter (French).

Naïma has always known that her family came from Algeria – but up until now, that meant very little to her. Born and raised in France, her knowledge of that foreign country is limited to what she’s learned from her grandparents’ tiny flat in a crumbling French sink estate: the food cooked for her, the few precious things they brought with them when they fled.

On the past, her family is silent. Why was her grandfather Ali forced to leave? Was he a harki – an Algerian who worked for and supported the French during the Algerian War of Independence? Once a wealthy landowner, how did he become an immigrant scratching a living in France?

Naïma’s father, Hamid, says he remembers nothing. A child when the family left, in France he re-made himself: education was his ticket out of the family home, the key to acceptance into French society.

But now, for the first time since they left, one of Ali’s family is going back. Naïma will see Algeria for herself, will ask the questions about her family’s history that, till now, have had no answers.

Full citation from the 2022 judging panel on The Art of Losing

“Symphonic in historical and emotional scope, the novel is by turns infuriating, unflinching, wry, recalcitrant, sensual, aporetic, courageous. It offers insights at every scale, from the national and the individual, about the fluid nature of identity; how our relations to place and to each other situate and perhaps free us. Refusing easy answers, pat politics and cultural caricatures while acknowledging their presence and seductive power in our time, The Art of Losing is a loving and clear-eyed sifting of the stories we tell ourselves (and what we leave unspoken) in order to make sense of who we are in the world.”

 

City of Books Podcast Featuring Sara Baume

Photo credit: Kenneth O’Halloran

 

STEPPING BACK

Despite winning critical success with each of her books, writer and visual artist Sara Baume says, “I’ll always feel like a failed artist rather than a successful writer.”

But, typically reflective, this highly original author adds: “Perhaps carrying that is useful in some way.”

She tells the City of Books podcast that she doesn’t show much of her art: “It all sits in my art room of junk.” However, working with her hands is important to her.

Art themes include handmade birds – featured in her last book, the non-fiction work Handiwork – and tiny container ships which reflect her concerns about over-consumption. When she looks at the real life versions of those ships, she thinks about all the boxes inside them.

Sara is unafraid to use her own life in her writing, while insisting on its status as fiction, and does so again in her new book Seven Steeples, a gentle and thought-provoking novel spanning seven years. It’s about a couple and their two rescue dogs who drop off the radar and live a quiet life doing as little harm to the planet as possible.

“Everything I write is always an extremity of my actual existence. It’s sort of like a smudged out version of us, I suppose, and becomes less like us as the book goes on,” says Sara, who moved to the countryside 11 years ago and currently lives with her partner in West Cork.

Modestly, she tells podcast presenter Martina Devlin that she lacks the flair to invent stories and “perhaps I don’t have a busy enough life” to borrow details from the people she meets, like other writers. So she needs to harvest her own, even as she transforms it.

Seven Steeples by Sara Baume is published by Tramp Press https://tramppress.com/product/seven-steeples/

City of Books is sponsored by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature.

LISTEN HERE

2022 QuietManDave Prize is open to entries. Flash Fiction and Flash Non-Fiction Prizes

The QuietManDave Prize celebrates short-form writing and the life of someone who loved to experience new places, art and events and write about them. The Prize offers awards of £1,000* for Flash Fiction and £1,000* Flash Non-Fiction as well as runner-up prizes.

Both Prizes are open internationally to writers aged 16 or over – and we are particularly keen to encourage, discover and celebrate new writers. Sponsored entry is available for those who might not otherwise be able to participate.

    • 1st prize: £1,000* each for Flash Fiction (up to 500 words)  and Flash Non-Fiction (up to 500 words) 
    • Runner up prizes: 2nd £200*, 3rd £50* in each category
    • Entry fee: £5 (sponsored (£0) entry** available for those who might not otherwise be able to participate)

* Terms and conditions apply
** For information about how to apply for a sponsored entry visit the Sponsored Entry Page.

Call for UNESCO City of Literature Wonju Residency 2022

Wonju City of Literature offers a chance for writers from cities of literature to come to Wonju and stay at Toji Cultural Centre for eight weeks, as Wonju City of Literautre’s
international level contribution to the cities of literature sub-network, designed to promote the understanding and the friendship of cities of literature. In the call of 2022,
just like the call out in 2021, one writer from cities of literature and/or who have a close connection to cities of literature will benefit from the CoL Wonju Residency 2022.

Residency Call Details
• Closing Date of Application: June 9
• Announcement of Successful Recipient: July 8
• Place for Residency: Toji Cultural Centre
• Residency Duration: Eight weeks
• Initiating Date of Residency: September 1
• Ending Date of Residency: October 30
• Round-trip Air Ticket Provided
• Transportation on arrival and departure dates provided
• Organic meals are provided at the cafeteria of Toji Cultural Centre
• Writing Room: One of Rooms for Writers at Toji Cultural Centre provided

How to Apply
1) Let us know about yourself
2) Let us know about your literary works, achievements, awards, etc
3) Let us know about your literary world
4) Let us know about why you would like to come to Wonju
Note that you can write not more than one A4 sheet (12 font size at least) per each
numbered subject above. Pages exceeding a total of four A4 sheets will not be
considered. For fair assessment, additional portfolio and materials will not be
considered, neither. Also, please write in the document if you are from or have a
very strong connection to a city of literature. This will be verified through the
contact with a focal point or coordinator of the city of literature once a final pick is
done.

Please send your application to dewkorea@korea.kr (Drake Yang) no later than June 9.

Download Full Details Here

Gothenburg City of Literature Writers in Residence

Gothenburg UNESCO City of Literature have opened a call for 2022 West Sweden Literary Residency Grants. Region Västra Götaland offers a one-month stay and invite applications for a total of nine residency grants, in five locations throughout West Sweden.

Here’s the link for all the details. 

They particularly welcome applicants from other Unesco Cities of Literature.

Are you working as a writer or literary translator? Do you need access to your own room? Are you looking for a peaceful work environment and new inspiration? Now you can apply for a one-month residency grant for 2022, within the framework of AIR Litteratur Västra Götaland.

The residency grant includes one month of free accommodation and access to a workplace. The grant is worth 20,000 SEK. For residency grants where the host is a library, a writer’s fee of 7,500 SEK is also included for a public appearance which will be organized during the residency, in consultation with the host.

Submit your application no later than on 25 April through digital form available here.

https://www.vgregion.se/f/kulturutveckling/regional-utveckling-och-tjanster/kultur-och-konstarter/litteratur-och-lasframjande/air-litteratur/air-litteratur-vastra-gotaland-utlyser-vistelsestipendier/application-for-residency-grants/

Virtual Writer Residencies at the Manchester Festival of Libraries 2022

Manchester UNESCO City of Literature and Manchester Literature Festival are offering two virtual writer residencies to take place this June during the Festival of Libraries.

During the three-week residency, writers will be hosted by either Chetham’s Library or the International Anthony Burgess Foundation with the opportunity to explore their online collections and archives, meet staff to find out more about Manchester’s literary heritage and collections, and enjoy virtual tours of the host venues and the city.

During the residency, writers will be encouraged to share their experience of the city with Manchester’s literary community via social media, to take part in other meetings and talks including sharing their work and their influences, and to produce a new piece of writing responding to Manchester or links between the city and their own UNESCO City of Literature.

There is a fee of £1,500 for each residency. The residencies form part of the city’s international strategy and are open to published writers with strong links to a UNESCO City of Literature outside the UK.

Deadline: 13th May 2021

For More details see https://www.manchestercityofliterature.com/opportunity/virtual-writer-residencies-at-the-festival-of-libraries-2022/

 

Bucheon City of Literature Writers in Residence Opportunity

The Bucheon City of Literature writers in residence program promotes writing and literature, whilst giving an opportunity to enjoy the dynamic and unique environment of Bucheon.

During the seven-weeks of the residency, the writer will spend 80% of their time working on their own project and 20% of their time participating in programs that are designed and personalised with input from the residential officer in Bucheon City of Literature. There is a generous budget for airfare, food and accommodation.

An interest in Korean culture and literature is important, you must have at least one published work and live in a UNESCO Creative City (like Dublin).

Please read more on the Bucheon City of Literature website linked below, and download the application form from there. The deadline for applications is 27th April 2022.

More information including criteria and application form: https://blog.naver.com/bucheon_unesco/222685350846

Dublin City Council announces the 2022 DUBLIN Literary Award Shortlist

6 novels have been shortlisted for the 2022 DUBLIN Literary Award, sponsored by Dublin City Council. Celebrating 27 years, this award is the world’s most valuable annual prize for a single work of fiction published in English, worth €100,000 to the winner. If the book has been translated the author receives €75,000 and the translator receives €25,000.  Distinctive among literary prizes, nominations are chosen by librarians and readers from a network of libraries around the world.

The 2022 Award winner will be chosen from a diverse and international shortlist which includes two novels in translation and a first-time novelist. The shortlist features authors who are French, Irish, Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg (Alderville First Nation, Canadian), New Zealander, and Nigerian.

The 27th winner of the Dublin Literary Award will be announced by its Patron, Lord Mayor Alison Gilliland on Thursday 19th May, as part of the opening day programme of International Literature Festival Dublin (ILFDublin), which is also funded by Dublin City Council.

The shortlisted titles are:

  1. Remote Sympathy by Catherine Chidgey (New Zealander).
    Published by Europa Editions.
    Nominated by Auckland Libraries, New Zealand and Dunedin Public Libraries, New Zealand.
  2. At Night All Blood is Black by David Diop (French).
    Translated from the French by Anna Moschovakis.
    Published by Pushkin Press.
    Nominated by Bibliothèque de Reims, France.
  3. The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi (Nigerian).
    Published by Faber & Faber.
    Nominated by Helsinki City Library, Finland.
  4. The Art of Falling by Danielle McLaughlin (Irish).
    Published by John Murray.
    Nominated by Cork City Libraries, Ireland.
  5. Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies by Leanne Betasamosake Simpson (Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg).
    Published by House of Anansi.
    Nominated by Ottawa Public Library, Canada.
  6. The Art of Losing by Alice Zeniter (French).
    Translated from the French by Frank Wynne.
    Published by Picador, Pan Macmillan.
    Nominated by Bibliothèque publique d’information, Paris, France.

Dublin City Librarian, Mairead Owens, praised the Award for breaking down barriers through literature by inviting readers around the world to read books translated from different languages, and cultures. 

“Selecting 6 titles for this year’s DUBLIN Literary Award shortlist from a longlist of 79 is a challenge, says Mairéad and I commend our judging panel for presenting us with stories which illustrate the breadth of human thought, endurance and response during tense and challenging moments in life.

This year’s shortlist is an affecting one for readers, encouraging us to experience a sense of other realities.

Each book is worthy of our attention and will leave us questioning. I encourage readers to dive into the list and choose for themselves their favourite before this year’s DUBLIN Literary Award winner is announced on Thursday 19 May.”

The international panel of judges who will select the shortlist and winner, features Dubliner Sinéad Moriarty, a writer and books ambassador for Eason’s Must Reads book club; Alvin Pang, from Singapore, a poet, writer, editor, anthologist, translator and researcher; Cork-born, Clíona Ní Ríordáin, a Professor of English at Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris; Professor Emmanuel Dandaura, a creative writer, literary critic, festival curator, scholar, and multiple award winning playwright based in Abuja, Nigeria and Victoria White, a graduate with an MLitt in English Literature of Trinity College Dublin, who has worked as a writer and journalist with the Irish Times and the Irish Examiner.

The non-voting Chairperson is Professor Chris Morash, the Seamus Heaney Professor of Irish Writing at Trinity College Dublin. 

Podcast Series

In the lead up to the winner announcement, and to enhance the reading experience of the shortlist, the DUBLIN Literary Award website and social media channels will share 6 short films featuring well-known Irish actors performing short excerpts from the shortlisted novels. In association with their partner, International Literature Festival Dublin (ILFDublin), a special shortlist podcast series has been commissioned which will be hosted by Jessica Traynor, Irish writer, dramaturg and creative writing teacher and Seán Hewitt, a fellow writer who teaches Modern British & Irish Literature at Trinity College Dublin.  Jessica Traynor and Seán Hewitt will take listeners inside the shortlisted novels and speak exclusively to the authors and translator in contention for the award.

Key Dates

The six member international judging panel, chaired by Prof. Chris Morash, will select one winner, which will be announced by the Patron of the Award, Lord Mayor of Dublin Alison Gilliland on Thursday 19th May during the International Literature Festival Dublin (ILFDublin) which runs from the 19th to the 29th May 2022 from Merrion Square.

Many of the novels nominated and shortlisted for the Award will be available for readers to borrow from Dublin City Libraries and from public libraries around Ireland, or can be borrowed as eBooks and eAudiobooks on the free Borrowbox app, available to all public library users. The shortlist can be viewed on the Award website at www.dublinliteraryaward.ie.

Máire Mhac an tSaoi – Poetry In Irish Award

In honour of Máire Mhac an tSaoi 1922 – 2021 Meath County Council Cultural Services are pleased to announce the establishment of the Máire Mhac an tSaoi Poetry in Irish Award.

The award consists of a one day master class with Louis de Paor for five participants.

Click images below for full details:

 

City of Books Podcast Featuring Rosemary Jenkinson

City of Books image with Rosemary Jenkinson and new book cover

Marching to Her Own Beat

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past,” said William Faulkner – and the past is ever-present, but with a twist, in Rosemary Jenkinson’s short story collection Marching Season.

The Belfast playwright and short story writer tackles rioting, bonfires to mark the Twelfth of July, TED talks, and one-night-stands and threesomes in her no-holds-barred stories.

Rosemary talks about her themes, but also reflects on the numbing effect of cancel culture in a City of Books interview for Dublin UNESCO City of Literature, where she tells the podcast’s presenter Martina Devlin about her recent experience of generating controversy.

There was a backlash in some quarters after she said the success of Milkman by Anna Burns and other successful Troubles books had led to an excess of fiction focused on a “narrow-visioned Belfast noir”. Subsequently, her publisher decided against publishing a novel by her, saying she had shrunk rather than grown her potential market.

Ironically, Rosemary says it happened as she was working on a play for the Abbey Theatre with cancel culture as a theme. “It’s art imitating life,” she said. She believes writers should engage with the world around them, and shouldn’t be silenced because they fear giving offence.

On writing sex scenes for her work, she says, “I don’t have children and both parents are dead so who’s going to be embarrassed? I’m not. It’s a beautiful place of liberation sometimes when there’s nobody around to care what you write.”

LISTEN HERE

Marching Season by Rosemary Jenkinson is published by Arlen House