UK Poet Laureate Simon Armitage has launched the 2019 Red Line Book Festival with a special poetry reading at Rua Red, Tallaght. The Festival will run October 7th - 13th in venues across South County Dublin.
Details of this year’s exciting programme have been announced, bringing together some of the greats of the literary world, as well as an array of exciting new voices.
Some of those in the line-up include Irish Laureate for Fiction Sebastian Barry, Laureate na nÓg Sarah Crossan, Kevin Barry, Sarah Webb, Alison Spittle, Joseph O’Connor, Christine Dwyer Hickey, Colm O’Regan and Laura Dodsworth.
An initiative of South Dublin Libraries and Arts, the Red Line Book Festival brings local, national and international authors, alongside talks, workshops, theatrical productions and creative writing competitions, to venues across South Dublin County each October.
South Dublin County Council Chief Executive Daniel McLoughlin said:
“The Red Line Book Festival is a wonderful opportunity for people of South Dublin to enjoy the very best the literary world has to offer – right here on their own doorstep. This year’s programme is, once again, an eclectic mix of established international and national writers as well as exciting new voices on the cutting edge.”
Mayor of South Dublin County Council, Cllr Vicky Casserly commented:
“The Red Line Book Festival continues to enrich the literary and cultural life of South Dublin by attracting both fresh new voices and household names and offering a programme for readers of all interests and ages. I invite everyone, from South Dublin County and beyond, to participate in as many events as possible.”
New to this year’s programme is the Changing Ideas strand, with a number of events featuring writers whose work is pushing boundaries or affecting social change. The Bare Reality: A Vagina Dialogue sees photographer and writer Laura Dodsworth discuss her body of work that explores the un-airbrushed truth of women’s sexuality with Tara Flynn. Elsewhere, multi-disciplinary artist and provocateur Franko B joins Will St. Leger in conversation and Catherine Dunne, Lia Mills, Hilary Fannin and Donnah Vuma will discuss their contributions to Yes, We Still Drink Coffee! Stories of Women Human Rights Defenders.
The Digital Worlds strand delves into the often fabulous but sometimes flustering world of social media. Back by popular demand, Alison Spittle hosts another edition of Internet Famous, a panel event this year with Colm O’Regan, Sophie White, Twisteddoodles and Liam Geraghty. Elsewhere, Jack Fennell discusses his critically-acclaimed collection of lesser-known works of classic Irish science fiction, A Brilliant Void.
Celebrating the rising stars of Irish writing, the Debuts strand sees novelist Vivienne Kearns discussing her first book The Emerald Dress, while Daring Debuts finds novelists Sarah Davis-Goff, Kealan Ryan & Eoghan Smith share their journey of writing and releasing their debut novels to the world. Anne Griffin, author of the bestselling When All is Said will also be joining the line-up.
The festival’s Poetic Licence strand celebrates poetry and includes a special event with Kathleen Watkins discussing her new anthology The Ordinary Woman and Other Poems I Love with Dermot Bolger, as well as a Poetry Night that features a panel discussion hosted by Angela T. Carr with Jessie Lendennie, Lisa Frank, John Walsh and Peter Fallon exploring how to get ahead in poetry and the announcement of the winners of the 2019 Red Line Book Festival poetry competition from judge Nell Regan. Poet Michael J Whelan will launch his new book Rules of Engagement and there will be a ‘happening’ to mark the launch of the new issue of poetry/art magazine Abridged.
Highlights of the Red Line Book Festival’s Signature Series include the mouth-watering prospect of Joseph O’Connor and Kevin Barry in conversation with Rick O’Shea, Laureate for Fiction Sebastian Barry in conversation with Dermot Bolger, as well as evenings with Hugo Hamilton and Christine Dwyer Hickey. The announcement of the winner of the 2019 TU Dublin Red Line Book Festival Short Story Competition, judged by June Caldwell, takes place as part of a dedicated Short Story Night, which also includes a panel discussion of The Art of Brevity.
Gaeilge: Anseo agus Anois – Irish: Here and Now considers the status, role and exciting future of the Irish language through music, poetry and readings. There will also be another Red Line Book Festival edition of the Irish Writers Centre’s Takin’ The Mic, while Dublin Marathon – 40 Years Running will close out the festival by marking the publication of Sean McGoldrick’s Dublin Marathon: Celebrating 40 Years with stories from some ‘ordinary’ runners and insights into this much-loved Dublin institution.
The Red Line Book Festival’s Writer-in-Residence Lisa Harding invites you to a showcase event, sharing the work of participants in a creative writing project, called Rediscovering Tallaght by Looking Up. The late Eileen Battersby, a friend of the festival, is remembered through the selection of her novel Teethmarks On My Tongue as the subject of the inaugural Red Line Book Club.
There are lots of events for children to cater to budding bookworms. Moon + Sixpence Theatre’s Jacqueline & The Beanstalk is a retelling of the classic story that turns the gender stereotyping of traditional fairy tales on its head. Aga Grandowicz, the woman behind Dr Hibernica Finch’s Compelling Compendium of Irish Animals, will host workshops in English and Polish, while Sarah Webb, Judi Curtin and Oisín McGann lead a fun-filled exploration of Irish history as part of Magical History Tour.
The festival’s Tools of the Trade programme features a number of free workshops aimed at aspiring and established writers, including Where Do Stories Come From?, a storytelling and fiction writing workshop with Dave Lordan, Writing from Life with Doreen Finn, as well as workshops with Angela T. Carr and Anne Tannam. Tickets for all festival events can be booked at here.