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All of our events are free, but if you are able and willing to donate, your support will be much appreciated. All donations received this year will go towards supporting the fees we pay our writers. Donate here.

If you’d like to buy the books, you can do so at Charlie Byrne’s Festival Bookshop here. 

In this unique time of lockdown, and social distancing, people are spending more time at home than they have in decades and are re-examining their relationships to their bodies, their home life and the quiet clockwork of a daily routine. Sara Baume and Sinéad Gleeson are two writers whose work will speak to many.

In handiwork, Baume charts the daily process of making and writing, exploring what it is to create and to live as an artist within the confines of her own home. Elegantly encompassing images and in itself a significant artifact, handiwork offers observations that are at once gentle and devastating on the nature of art, grief and a life lived well.

Constellations, Sinéad Gleeson’s acclaimed collection of essays, looks to the body, that most fundamental thing that we all share, and through which we experience the world. How do you tell the story of a life in a body, as it goes through sickness, health, motherhood? In the tradition of some of our finest life writers, and yet still in her own spirited, generous voice, Sinéad takes us on a journey that is both uniquely personal and yet universal in its resonance.

Sara Baume won the 2014 Davy Byrnes Short Story Award and went on to receive the Hennessy New Irish Writing Award, the Rooney Prize and an Irish Book Award in 2015. Her work has also been longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award, the Warwick Prize for Writing, the Desmond Elliott Prize for New Fiction and the International Dublin Literary Award, shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award and has won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize amongst others.

Sinéad Gleeson is a writer of essays, criticism and fiction. Her writing has appeared in Granta, Winter Papers and Gorse, and a story of hers will appear in Being Various: New Irish Short Stories published by Faber in May 2018. She is the editor of three short story anthologies, including The Long Gaze Back: an Anthology of Irish Women Writers and The Glass Shore: Short Stories by Women Writers from the North of Ireland, both of which won Best Irish Published Book at the Irish Book Awards. Sinéad has worked as an arts critic and broadcaster and has presented The Book Show on RTÉ Radio 1.