The Blue Nib no 35 launch

Blue Nib35 ReadersBlue Nib #35 launch
I was delighted to be one of the featured readers at the launch of the first print edition of The Blue Nib. This came about because I’d entered The Blue Nib Chapbook Contest #3. My entry achieved Highly Commended and one of my poems, Pes Anserinus, was chosen for publication in this print edition. My full entry will be published in The Blue Nib online magazine at



August Happenings

East Side Arts Fest 3rd Aug 2018 for WANI

It was a pleasure to be part of Eastside Arts Festival 2018 in Belfast and read along with over a dozen writers from Women Aloud NI. A lovely warm, friendly audience turned up to the Eastside Visitors Centre on the morning of 3rd Aug and made us feel very welcome as we read our stories and poems.
20912-WD Annual Comp 2018-Winner Seal-AW (1)
Also in Aug, I discovered that my feature film script, Big Man, had received an Honourable Mention in the 87th annual Writers Digest competition. Apparently there were over 5300 entries worldwide so Big Man did OK. No actual prize though. Just the kudos of being entitled to add the above graphic to my promotional stuff. The story synopsis is in the Film/TV section of this website so have a read if you’re curious, or if you’re a film producer looking for a script!

The Santa Barbara Poets Laureate

Santa Barbara Poets Laureate

I was delighted to have the opportunity to read with the Santa Barbara Poets Laureate Chryss Yost, David Starkey and Paul Willis at an event hosted by North West Words in Florence Food Co, Letterkenny on 17th July, 2018.

North West Words had invited local poets to write a poem in response to one of three written by the Laureates and I chose to write a poem, which I titled Domestic Noir, in response to David Starkey’s Nordic Noir. On the night, four of us read response poems and I also read in the Open Mic session afterwards. It was a great night. A lovely warm, welcoming atmosphere was created by North West Words and the visiting Laureates were very friendly and open to chatting with everyone after the readings. The Laureates have since been reading in Enniskillen and at the Heaney Homeplace and will be travelling to Waterford and Dingle for more readings. They are definitely well worth hearing and meeting!


Poetry Readings & Performances

It’s been a busy year already! Here is a listing of my 2018 readings .


I was delighted to read a selection of my poems at the Women Aloud NI readings for the East Side Arts Festival Poems, Prose and Pastries event in Belfast on 3rd Aug.


Reading Domestic Noir and Nephropid poems at Florence Food Co Letterkenny with the Santa Barbara Poets Laureate organised by North West Words.


Reading Wild Goats poem at Belfast Book Festival reading in memory of Heather Newcombe and Martin Crawford


Reading Homecoming poem at Cavan At The Edge open mic


Performed Rape as a Weapon of Mass Destruction poem at Cuirt Spoken Word Platform, Galway


Reading Rape as a Weapon of Mass Destruction, Commemoration, Poem for a Scarlet Woman and Survivor poems in Enniskillen for International Women’s Day

Reading Oh You, The Man Who Became a Bird, Reflection on Francis Bacon’s Three Studies for a Self-Portrait, Mapmaker, poems in Waterstones, Belfast for World Poetry Day


Reading Rape as a Weapon of Mass Destruction, How Can I Say and Survivor poems at Bangor Holocaust Memorial Event 20th Jan 2018

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Find further information about my writing HERE.

How it all began

I began writing creatively back in the mid 1990’s when I moved to Ballycastle and inadvertently joined Ballycastle Creative Writers. I say inadvertently because I had gone to a Workers’ Educational Association taster night in the town’s recreation centre with the intention of signing up for a local history class. Not enough people turned up to justify running the local history course so, after exploring the other options on offer, I finally settled on the Creative Writing class led by Joan and Kate Newman.

Joan and Kate turned out to be wonderfully inspiring teachers and mentors and very supportive to me in all my subsequent writing endeavours.

Since then 

I am an award winning writer of short stories, poetry and screenplays. I worked for many years in the film and television industry and hold an MA in Documentary Practice. I have written two children’s dramas – “Coolaboola” and “You Looking at Me?” – broadcast on Channel 4 and I have written five feature-length films on commission.

Film Awards include: EU New Talent Award for screen adaptation of the novel ‘Black Harvest’ by Ann Pilling. Original screenplays have been shortlisted for the Orange Pathe Prize and the Miramax Award.

I have also tutored Creative Writing and UK Film Council accredited Screenwriting Courses for the WEA, QUB, and various writing groups, festivals and District Councils before devoting myself full-time to my own writing.

Further Writing Awards/Publications Record: I have won the Allingham Short Story Award and have had stories published, most recently, in Crannóg, The Honest Ulsterman, Ireland’s Own and Boyne Berries. My poetry was shortlisted for the 2017 Allingham Award and also placed in several recent competitions including the Bangor Poetry Competition and published in the 2018 Poetry in Motion anthology.

I am currently writing a novel and working towards a collection of poetry.