Now in its sixth year, the IWC Young Writer Delegates Programme has partnered once again with Cúirt International Festival of Literature. During the festival period, five selected writers between the ages of 18 and 26 will be welcomed to the programme by the Irish Writers Centre. The writers will attend a variety of events at Cúirt, reflect on their experiences and soak up the festival atmosphere. Alan McMonagle, the YWD’s writer-mentor, will lead the writers in a series of workshops as well as provide guidance in succeeding in and enjoying life as a writer.

In keeping with the Irish Writers Centre’s 2022-2026 Strategy, the Young Writer Delegates Programme seeks to create new opportunities, grant access and develop networks that connect writers to each other. This programme directly correlates with the objectives of Strategy Goal 2, which is to enhance opportunities for people across all communities to explore and participate in creative writing, as well as Goal 3, which is to cultivate an engaged community of writers and strategic alliances that support our ambitions.

At this showcase, the five selected Irish Writers Centre/Cúirt Young Writer Delegates will share some of the creative work developed during the festival with their mentor, Alan McMonagle.

2023 Winners of the Young Writers Delegates Programme

Lucy Bleeker is a Galway based cross-genre writer. Her one act play “The Baggage” won the Best Writing Award at the Jerome Hynes One Acts Series 2023, as part of the University of Galway’s Theatre Week. She was listed for the Cúirt New Writing prize for Poetry 2023. She studies on the MA in Writing programme at the University of Galway under the mentorship of Elaine Feeney. Her work explores themes of domesticity, ageing, and modern mundanity in a tragicomic style. Her influences include Samuel Beckett, Margaret Atwood and Mohsin Hamid.

Matthew O’Rourke is a poet and short fiction writer based in Limerick who is currently
pursuing his BA in English and Drama at Mary Immaculate College.  His work has been published by, among others, VIBE, Spiritus Mundi Review, Healthline Zine, Musing Publications, Chinchilla Lit, and The Evermore Review. His writing traverses cursed settings, matters of healing and release, and identity.

Deirdre Bolger is a twenty-six-year-old artist and writer from Co. Mayo, living between Galway and Dublin. Her work has been published under the Bloomers’ journal, FAT ÉIRE.  She works in the Art Department in the Irish film and TV industry, on such productions as;  The Banshees of Inisherin, Normal People and The Pope’s Exorcist. She wears cool  sunglasses and too much yellow.

Arianne Clarke is a poet from the Midlands. Her work is particularly concerned with ideas of history, legacy, and language, and has been recognised by Poetry Ireland, Listowel Writers’ Week and the Wicked Young Writers’ Award. She holds a degree in English Literature and History from Trinity College Dublin.

Gráinne Condron is an aspiring poet and author based in Dublin. She is currently
undertaking a BSc in Sustainability. Her writing work has been published under the
Brendan Kennelly Cup, the Belonging Project, and HEBE Poetry. She hopes to use the
Cúirt Writers Festival to explore the Irish writing industry, challenge herself creatively, and make new connections.

Event Location

Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop

The Cornstore, Middle St, Galway

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The Cornstore entrances are step free but have limited wheelchair access due to the width of the doors. The venue has internal steps with limited space to navigate with certain mobility
aids. The street entrance has a step. There is one accessible parking space on Middle Street immediately outside, and three spaces on Saint Augustine Street. There are no accessible public

There is no Loop system.