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Two Wicklow writers in new Ireland’s Own Anthology of short stories and memories

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The new Ireland's Own Anthology of Short Stories and Memories is now on sale.

The new Ireland's Own Anthology of Short Stories and Memories is now on sale.

The new Ireland's Own Anthology of Short Stories and Memories is now on sale.

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THE 12th Ireland’s Own Anthology of Short Stories and Memories has just been published and two writers from Co. Wicklow are included among the 40 winners and highly commended entries from almost 500 participants in the long-running Ireland’s Own writing competitions.

The stories cover many facets of Irish life, including the perennial recurring themes of bereavement, emigration, the love of home, and often complicated tales of romance.

The memoir pieces recall famous balladeer Delia Murphy; when house visitors were frequent and welcome, how a 'Tops of the Town' chicken dancer in later life toured with Riverdance, a time when phones were a much shared rarity, especially in country areas, Aunt Nellie's 'good room' known as the parlour, and much more.

Sarah Greene from Convent Avenue in Bray was a prizewinner in the memoir section with her piece, Hearing The News. This concerns November 22, 1963, when news filters through from Dallas in America that the children do not fully comprehend but it causes the adults to talk in hushed and sombre tones.

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Originally from Limerick city, Sarah recently joined a creative writers group set up by the University of the 3rd Age. She has written sporadically over the years, but with a new intensity during the Pandemic and this has resulted in her first writing success.

My Famous Aunt Delia by Carmen Cullen, Lower Dargle Road in Bray, recalls childhood memories of Delia Murphy, ambassador's wife and a brilliant performer of Irish ballads in her own unique style.

Carmen was head of English in Colaiste Dhulaigh and has published novels, poetry and drama. She was awarded an M.Phil in Creative Writing from Trinity College in 2009 and since then has toured with her show Hello Delia Murphy.

Anthology Editor and compiler, Phil Murphy, who was nearly 20 years editor of Ireland's Own prior to retirement, says: "The popularity of our writing competitions and the Anthology itself continues to grow and this volume contains entries from 18 Irish counties, from Britain and from Brussels.”

Current editors of the magazine, Sean Nolan and Shea Tomkins, welcome publication of the latest book. “The anthology and our writing competitions are an essential part of our policy of encouragement and support.”

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Author Carmel Harrington. Photo: Patrick Browne

Author Carmel Harrington. Photo: Patrick Browne

Author Carmel Harrington. Photo: Patrick Browne

The Foreword is contributed by USA Today best-selling novelist, Carmel Harrington, and she says Ireland's Own was enjoyed by all the family when she was growing up.

She tells the writers: “You are now part of the magazine's history. And perhaps, in the same way I was inspired as a young girl, your stories in this anthology will inspire a new generation of writers too. That's a nice thought!”

Ireland’s Own, the popular family magazine, has been published in Wexford town without a break since November 1902 and is still thriving.

The Anthology is published by Ireland's Own, part of the Mediahuis (Ireland) group. It is available at €14.99 online at www.irelandsown.ie or from Ireland's Own at Channing House, Rowe Street, Wexford. Email: info@irelandsown.ie; Tel: 053 91 40140 (overseas at 00353 5391 40140).


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