Emerging Writers Last Few Tickets Left Aoife Fitzpatrick, Clara Kumagai and Declan Toohey in conversation with Jan Carson
Author Jan Carson will be in conversation with some of Ireland’s most exciting emerging authors. The Red Bird Sings (Virago) by Aoife Fitzpatrick is a searing feminist historical Gothic fiction that confronts urgent issues of the present day. Catfish Rolling (Head of Zeus) by Clara Kumagai is a story that blends magic-realism with Japanese myth and legend. Perpetual Comedown (New Island) by Declan Toohey is a contemporary yarn of academic intrigue and youthful irreverence, sexual fluidity and neurodiversity.
Aoife Fitzpatrick is a native of Dublin, Ireland. Her debut novel, The Red Bird Sings, won the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize in 2020 and is a Sunday Times pick for best historical fiction of the year, 2023. The winner of the inaugural Books Ireland short-story competition, her work has also been recognised by the Séan O’Faoláin Prize, the Elizabeth Jolley Prize and by the Writing.ie Short Story of the Year award. Aoife received an MFA in Creative Writing at University College Dublin in 2019 and in 2020, she was the recipient of a literature bursary from the Arts Council of Ireland.
Clara Kumagai is from Canada, Japan and Ireland. Her fiction and non-fiction for children and adults has been published in The Stinging Fly, the Irish Times, Banshee, Room, the Kyoto Journal and Cicada, among others. She is a recipient of a We Need Diverse Books Mentorship and was a finalist for the 2020 Jim Wong-Chu Emerging Writers Award. Clara lives in Ireland and Catfish Rolling is her debut novel.
Declan Toohey was born in Paisley, Scotland and raised in County Kildare, Ireland. His work has appeared in Channel, Soft Punk, and the anthology Queer Love, among other outlets. In 2021 he was a co-winner of the IWC Novel Fair, and he is the 2022 recipient of the Maeve Binchy Travel Award. He is currently an MFA candidate at University College Dublin, where he is working on his second novel under the supervision of Anne Enright. Perpetual Comedown is his
Jan Carson is a writer and community arts facilitator from Belfast. She’s published three novels, two short story collections and two micro-fiction collections. The Fire Starters won EU Prize for Literature for Ireland 2019. The Raptures was shortlisted for the An Post Irish Novel of the Year and Kerry Group Novel of the Year 2022. Jan’s short story collection Quickly, While They Still Have Horses is forthcoming in Spring 2024. She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.