Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Plans for Irish Short Story Month

Year III
March 1 to March 31

"Glad to be invited for my first Irish Short
Story Month -Verlidia

"I was born to the stink of whiskey and failure 
And the scattered corpse of the real. 
This is my childhood and country: 
The cynical knowing smile 
Plastered onto ignorance 
Ideals untarnished and deadly 
Because never translated to action 
And everywhere 
The sick glorification of failure. 
Our white marble statues were draped in purple 
The bars of the prison were born in our eyes 
And if reality ever existed 
It was a rotten tooth 
That couldn't be removed
."   Bernard O'Loughlin

Event Resources-Links to lots of short stories, from classics to brand new works.  

Short stories go back further in history than novels, much further to pre-literate days.   They go back to the very start of what we like to call civilization and helped create the world’s major cultures and religions.  Newgrange is older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids.   

Anyone who likes is very welcome to participate in Irish Short Story Month Year Three (ISSM3).   Just write a post, however long or short, in whatever style you like, on anything related to an Irish short story.  It could be your thoughts on your favorite short story or a review of a related book such as a biography of Elizabeth Bowen.  Posts on Irish/Australian writers are also welcome.  ( If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact me at

"Good to back"
returning from
5000 years ago-
Ireland has produced as many great writers as England or the United States.   In an international literary shoot out, The Reading Life will be wagering on the Irish.  

During ISSM3 I am going to be focusing on posts on a large number of authors, from writers who published their first stories in 2012, to stories by the great commercial successes of contemporary Irish literature to works by classic writers of the 19th century like Maria Edgeworth, Thomas Crofton Croker, Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, and Charlotte Riddell.  My goal for ISSM3 is to post on stories by at least 100 different Irish writers, I in fact have already written posts for the event on 50 writers, most new to me.   

One of my aims as a blogger is to support the work of emerging short story writers and I will be, hopefully doing this during ISSM3.  If you are interested in being featured during the month, please contact me.  If you have a suggestion as to a writer that I should include, please let me know.   Last year I posted on a number of Emerging Irish Women Writers and some of them have already begun to take their place on the world literary stage.   This year I am including men and women.  

"Carmilla, give into
your passion and admit
you love me"-Rory

I will be drawing on two long academic works I have recently  read,  Inventing Ireland:   The Literature of the Modern Nation by Declan Kiberd and Occasions of Sin:  Sex and Society in Modern Ireland by Diarmaid Ferriter.    These works have helped me understand the historical context of the Irish short story.  I have also read since ISSM2 ended several works on the history of Ireland, including works that focus on the seminal event of Irish history, the famines of the mid-19th century.   I have read biographies of Elizabeth Bowen,  Lady Gregory and Samuel Beckett in the last year.   
"Not for all the pots of gold in Ireland"-Carmilla

I am not an academic or a scholar.  I am not a member of any literary school of interpretation.      I read, other than for my online contacts, pretty much in splendid isolation.    I love short stories and have a special passion for the work of Irish writers.   I know one has to think clearly in generalizing about national characteristics of literature but I am  almost ready now to attempt this on the Irish Short Story.  

My co-hosts will return along with some new visitors.   
"Why can't we all just get along?"-

Mel u


Unknown said...

Sounds good. I might do a William Trevor for next month. :-)

Bellezza said...

I have just placed on hold at our local library the Oxford Book of Irish Short Stories. I'm looking forward to reading a few, and posting about them, as I love Anne Enright, and Oscar Wilde, and Maeve Binchy, and need to more about Flannery O'Connor, etc.

Mel u said...

Nancy-that would be great!

Bellezza-I love the Oxford Book of Irish Short Stories-one treasure after another!-looking forward to seeing your thoughts on some Irish short stories

Anonymous said...

I would love to participate.

Mel u said...

Ann-I would be delighted if you joined us

Anonymous said...

It seems like short stories are making a come-back, I have read many reviews already and a few collections myself this year and just today came across a new Irish writer's stories in the library and then one of my clients mentioned Claire Keegan to me and I see she has a collection out as well. I shall go and have a look at your resources now. Great idea!

Alex in Leeds said...

Sounds like a great plan, I have a collection that fits the event that I was planning to read anyway, will add links to the event in my review. :)