Literary Orphans, Stinging Fly and Glass Woman prize finalist

Literary Orphans

I’ve just put up a new post on about the  beautiful Irish themed issue of The Chicago Based mag Literary Orphans

 Including fiction, essays and artwork from a wealth of Irish contributors it’s beautifully put together and was launched at Easter. In conjunction with Editor in Chief Mike Joyce, this Irish issue was guest edited by Westmeath native (and now Californian resident) James Claffey whose fabulous debut short story collection Blood a Cold Blue was released earlier this year.

I was delighted that my Fish shortlisted story All that Thinking was included in the issue and you can read it here

The Penny Dreadful

Cork-Based The Penny Dreadful magazine are also featured in the Literary Orphans mag, they are an innovative and vibrant lit mag whose submission deadline for fiction and poetry ends May 4th.

To read more about Literary Orphans and the Penny Dreadful sub opp see here.


Stinging Fly Launch

Apart from a dreadful flu which has delayed plans to bring out some ebook publications on headspace and creativity based on several years of blogposts, I’ve had some lovely highlights over the past month or so.

One of these was reading at the Stinging Fly launch on March 27th which was a real honour. I read from my flash fiction Eat! and apart from the fact that I should have brought my reading glasses, it was a terrifically enjoyable night, attended by almost 100 people with readings also from Dimitra Xidous who has just launched Keeping Bees with Doire Press) Patrick Chapman, June Caldwell and David Mellerick Lynch.

To read more about the issue, see here

Glass Woman Prize Finalist

From my sick bed, I received the lovely news that my short piece Anise Fish and Colin Behind the Glass had been selected by the judge of the Glass Woman prize and that I was one of ten finalists. What was really nice was that Beate Sigriddaughter had included me in the list based on her noticing the piece from her reading across the web (the piece was posted on Fictionaut) rather than through a competition entry. As every writer knows, such a boost of recognition is wonderful for the writer beavering away mainly in isolation. Both the piece selected and the flash fiction published in the Stinging Fly are from my novel in progress Eat! so I hope it augurs well for the future!

Another aspect to consider is that posting your work on your own site as part of Fridayflash or on peer review sites such as Fictionaut is a great way to connect with other writers and also extend your readership. We all love when someone enjoys our work and I’ve certainly discovered new writers through free posting sites such as I’ve mentioned.

To discover the other woman writers honoured with a Glass Woman Prize win or nomination, please see here. You’ll find links also to the pieces nominated including Anise Fish and Colin Behind the Glass.

Bristol Prize

Just a last word to say that the Bristol Prize short story competition closes this Wednesday. For submission guidelines see here

Creativity, Verve and Short Story Submission Opportunities

For various reasons (head Under water) I haven’t posted here in a tremendously long time so this will be a various post to apprise you of some interesting posts and submission opportunities etc.

In the particular spirit of this blog and it’s focus on getting into the mindset of creativity, I read this great post recently on creativity and endurance sports, in this case cycling.

This month one of my writing dreams came true when I was published along with some dear writing pals in this issue of The Stinging Fly. The flash fiction Eat! is the genus for my next novel that I’m currently putting in some semblance of order to get a working first draft. (In the case of this particular book I’m writing in bits and inspirations that I’m sticking together later to form a coherent (I hope!) whole.

This issue was guest edited by Nuala Ní Chonchuir who is a prolific, poet, short story writer and novelist who has a novel coming out on April 7th with the fabulous title The Closet of Savage Mementoes and who recently announced a further publication deal with Penguin UK and USA.

The Stinging Fly has a new editor Thomas Morris who presents us with this rousing and insightful editorial into what a short story is, can be and above all about your relationship as a writer with your own short story writing, what you can do with it and why you should follow your own path and heart when writing. Read it all here, it’s very worthwhile.

The Stinging Fly is also open to submissions for the whole month of March. I write about Mslexia’s short story competition and the resources for those thinking of entering in my most recent post here.

If you want to discover some exciting Irish literary mags to submit to, browse through the articles in my blog Random Acts of Optimism. I’ve spoken to editors from ESC, The Moth, Number 11 and The Bohemyth so far in my lit mag series.

And Quick! Pal Calum Kerr who runs the UK National Flash Fiction Day is looking for submissions for this year’s micro fiction (100) word prize. Deadline Sunday 9th March! All details here. It’s a great comp and publication to be involved in as I’ve had the pleasure of both last year and in 2012.

If you want some tiny fictions to get you inspired, you can grab my Stories to read on the Train for only 77p.

The Stinging Fly: Chat and Submissions

The Stinging Fly is a well respected literary magazine published from Ireland. It’s currently accepting submissions of poetry and short stories (postal) for it’s summer issue until Jan 31st and for all issues until Mar 31.For more details see here.

What’s it like to run a literary magazine these days? What are the challenges and what kind of shape is the short story in? These are some of the questions I asked Declan Meade, editor of the Stinging Fly in a Q & A on my blog (Random Acts of Optimism) on Check out the interview here.