Listowel Writers' Week Fringe

Blogging Listowel's Literary Scene
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Archive for the ‘starting up’

The Plan for Blogging #LWW10

May 14, 2010 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: 2010, historical, starting up, video, workshop

This is the news. We are going to blog this Festival – the Listowel Writers’ Week Festival 2010.

From now on there will be fresh content here almost every day. During the Festival, there will be a blogfest – a stream of posts. We intend to do our best to bring you some of the flavour of Writers’ Week – no matter where you are.

This is the 40th year of the Festival. The founders would expect us to share the goodies with the whole world – not simply keep the excitement in Listowel.

Of course, there’s no way to capture the atmosphere of Listowel during Writers’ Week and export it. You need to be in the bars, on the streets, at the workshops soaking it all up. But not everyone can do this. There are people all over the world who can’t travel to Co Kerry Ireland at the start of June. Some can’t afford it. Others are not well enough to make the journey. Others have other commitments. There’s no end to the reasons why most people won’t be in Listowel.

However Listowel can reach out wherever the internet goes. We can write reports and analysis of the proceedings. We can bring you news and gossip. We can put up podcasts – audio recordings (and the technology has made this much easier this year). Even video is coming …

Help us. Please give us a hand. Lend us your time & talent.
We’re about to publish the names of people who’ve volunteered to be in the team that’ll produce this publication. An email, postcard, Tweet, Facebook message – even a phone call will do.

Wouldn’t it be great if each of the literary workshops got someone to report on how it went – the feast of content we’d have for posterity.
How good would it be if we could get each of the tutors to offer us a short piece – in their own individual style?
Posterity matters – the legacy of Listowel Writers’ Week deserves to be honoured. We’ll do our best for you.

Behind the scenes on LWW Fringe blog

April 14, 2010 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: 2010, starting up

Spam… the bugbear… we have a heap of spam comments piled up. It would be great to delete them all.

Because this is a labour of love (something from which we earn no income) it’s not easy to sort this problem.

The Festival is coming. It will be on us before we know it. It was about this time last year when we launched the blog. I hope we’ll publish a steam of posts before #LWW10 kicks off on 2 June.

Would you like to contribute content?
The Festival has so many aspects to it… We’ll publish all sorts of stuff around Listowel Writers’ Week. The people who go to Listowel for the workshops, literary events and publife have many interests.

This blog is here to pay honour to the wonderful tradition of the Festival. This is, after all, the 40th year. Get in touch with a comment. We’ll be reading them all, and responding.

Plans for blogging 2010 Festival

March 06, 2010 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: 2010, starting up

On Friday, I met up with Jeremy Gould in Cork. We talked over the options for Listowel Writers’ Week 2010.

We had to consider whether we’d continue this blog for another year? We’re in touch with Patrick Stack of course. The three of us are keen to publish this blog again for the 40th anniverary festival, at the start of June.

We are planning. This means imagining how we’ll do it. Most importantly, how shall we involve others?

We intend to invite others to join us.
We’ll do our best to set up a team of people – so that the workload won’t be too much for anyone. We’re going to draft in invitation – so that people can see whether they’d like to help keep this blog going.

Please get in touch if you’d like to help in any way.

The Kerryman today…

January 27, 2010 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: 2010, creative writing, events, organisers, participants, preparations, starting up, workshop

There’s a nice report today in The Kerryman newspaper. The message seems to be :

Get your booking for a writer’s workshop in early this year: unprecedented demand for places.

Michael Lynch, chairman of Writers’ Week Listowel organising committee, encourages you to book now.

LWW Takes a Great Leap Forward for 2010

January 20, 2010 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: 2010, blogs, connections, events, historical, organisers, preparations, Reflections, starting up

Today Listowel Writers’ Week joined the new world. The Festival published its revamped website, which looks great.

But it had a good website last year.

The great leap forward is the simultaneous launch of its Facebook page and Twitter identity. This change is significant. It’s just in time for the 40th anniversary of LWW Literary Festival. I’ve immediately sent a request to be admitted as a Facebook Friend.

In my opinion, it would have been better if the Festival set up its Facebook presence differently – made it possible to become a “Facebook Fan” of Writers’ Week. But the big step it to get out where the public is.

The Festival is in Listowel for a few days every year, but there is a whole world of people who can’t make it to Listowel. There are so many who would be interested to know what’s going on. This Facebook presence give everyone a chance of linking up with the spirit of Listowel Writers’ Week. John B Keane and Bryan McMahon would have approved. They always wanted the Festival to break the boundaries of the parochial.

The Twitter move is dramatic.
Once you go on Twitter, you have to engage. People follow you, and you can’t afford to ignore them – it damages your reputation if you offer nothing to your followers. You have to tweet. People can see how serious you are about sharing, linking, engaging… Twitter is a medium which exposes a lot of your soul.
As soon as I got alerted to @writersweek on Twitter, I followed. I urge you all to do the same. Nothing will do more to raise the profile of LWW, all round the world, than a really good presence on Twitter.

It’s still not clear to me what this blog’s plan for LWW2010 is to be.
We are completely independent of the Festival Committee. We love the Festival. We’d love the Committee to love us, but we have no right to expect it. During 2009 Festival, the organising committee were civil to us. But if they liked anything we did, they didn’t let us know.

I have huge emotional attachment to Listowel Writers’ Week Festival.
It would be wonderful to continue to blog it again. I am completely convinced that all Festivals that are any good should be blogged. It’s all about making the hard work of organising the Festival visible to the audience of the future. All valuable Festivals deserve to be out there, reaching round the globe.

We’ve heard a lot about the Irish Diaspora, what about the Listowel Writers’ Week Diaspora?

This is surely a day for celebration. May the Fesitival of the Future be a credit to the joyful spirit of its founders…

Who’s this performer @ Listowel Writers’ Week 2009?

July 12, 2009 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: competition, events, starting up

Quiz question number 5: the man with the sax…

[Question 5 in a series of 10: grand prize to the person who gets most right.]

His name please?


We have “Tag Clouds” coming to this blog

June 08, 2009 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: blogs, connections, preparations, starting up

Like me, most of you won’t know what this means.

Would someone who understands the term “tag cloud”, please explain to us all what having “tag clouds” will mean?

What value to listowelwritersweekfringe.com are “tag clouds”?

Michael Reeves sent these wishes to Listowel Writers’ Week

June 06, 2009 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: connections, events, painters & paintings, poem, starting up

Apologies for not posting these earlier.

Michael (Mick) Reeves is from Limerick. We met at school. He is a fine painter and he lives in Clare and spends time in Murcia, Spain, where the light is special.

He sent me this text to pass on to Listowel Writers’ Week via the blog:

“From Spain I hear a body of voices
quiet moments for head and heart.
In your festival of words,
in the rhythm of the moment,
let words fall in all the colour of confetti at your feet…”

Audacity is the key, but Paul’s my name…

June 04, 2009 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: audio podcast, connections, starting up

Oh, I’ve been told what to do:

  • load “Audacity” and you’ll be able to sort out your audio recordings.
  • you’ll be able to edit the audio files, tidy them up, tart them up, put them up…

I’m one of the dimmest learners you’ve ever met:

I struggle with everything. The first day I tried to take in cash from bus drivers in London, I made so many accounting errors, it took the bank to sort my mess out.

The first night I operated the security system in Holloway bus garage, I locked all my colleague’s coats in the time-locked night safe.

The first time I tried to make love, I cocked it up.

So, of course, I can’t figure this out.

Loads of audio recording, made live during session at Writers’ Week 2009, lie dormant.

I rang Patrick Stack and he said I should download “lamelib” for Windows. I think I’ve done that, but I can’t find where it’s gone…

If you ever have difficulty doing something on your computer, and you catch yourself berating yourself, think of me. That should cheer you up.

One aftermath of Listowel Writers’ Week

June 03, 2009 By: Paul O'Mahony Category: connections, events, organisers, participants, poet, preparations, starting up

There can be no one aftermath.

I sat upstairs in the English Market this afternoon, going back through my “Moleskine notebook (lined).

I used a green highlighting pen. Put names in hand-drawn boxes, and circles around intentions. Every time I carry through something I planned, I give myself a big tick (fulfilling my bottomless love of positive feedback).

I put the date on every page, the place I was, the time…

Now it looks like a live animal.

I’d forgotten how rich the notebook became during Writers’ Week. There are drawings and prose contributed by others – people willing to take up my book and mark the page.

I was incredibly excited going to Listowel.

I was incredibly tired leaving for home. The journey to and the road home are part of my LWW09 experience.

First Moleskine entry reads

Listowel Arms Hotel @ 1450 on Wed. 27 May.

  • Booked in to the hotel (put name on list) for 2010
  • The family manage the hotel between them.
  • Met George Rowley & James McGrath sitting in bar.
  • George’s story of mental illness [all in his book]
  • Met Colm Toibin, told him of blog – he listened, I shook his hand.

The last entry [43 pages, 4 days & 4 hours later] reads:

M Sweeney – reading with…

The End.

For me now, the challenge is to walk the space between being an archivist (valuing the Moleskine as a document of record) and an artist (stretching, moulding & sculpting the Moleskine, so that it reaches out to the imagination of others).

I’m a hoarder and long-winded. I talk&write and write&talk and sense&listen.

I wonder how others are processing the experience?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people who read this immediately write a comment & share insight into the joy of ending

- flashing on the inward eye… (pardon me William Wordsworth)


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