Get to know the Young Writer Delegates at #DBF2020!

Every year, Dublin Book Festival is delighted to work with the Irish Writers Centre on their Young Writer Delegate programme, welcoming a fantastic group of young writers who act as ambassadors for the festival and receive excellent mentorship from an established author. This year is no different, despite the festival being online; we have been joined by four talented and promising writers: Sarah Little, Conor Fallon, Sophie Furlong Tighe, and Seirce Mhac Conghail!

We wanted to officially introduce you to our Young Writer Delegates so you can get to know them a bit better and tune in to their coverage of the festival!

Sarah Little

Sarah is a writer and artist from Fermanagh. She has recently been accepted onto Penguin’s WriteNow mentorship programme with her first novel The Painted Lives. She is currently in the final year of studying Art History and Creative Writing with the Open University. 

What event are you most excited for?

The event I am most looking forward to is The New Novelists: A Podcast with Róisín Ingle which features conversation with Naoise Dolan, Susannah Dickey, and Hilary Fannin.

Why did you want to get involved in the Young Writer Delegate programme?

I wanted to get involved with the Young Writer Delegates programme because it’s a fantastic opportunity to access top mentorship and actively participate in the Dublin Book Festival’s events.

Conor Fallon

Conor Fallon is an amateur mathematician and short story writer from Dublin. He has turned to writing in a vain attempt to keep his biscuit addiction under control. None of his stories have ever been published to his knowledge; however, he is awaiting rejection letters from several reputable literary journals.

What event are you most excited for?

I am looking forward to the Voices event with Carlo Gébler and Helen Ryan (of the National Adult Literacy Agency). I think that a lot of writing, whether it be fiction or things like government documents, can be written in a convoluted style, which affects their accessibility for many people. In particular, I hope to learn more about the work of NALA, and to hear some prose and poetry written in plain English.

Why did you want to get involved in the Young Writer Delegate programme?

To be exposed to a wide range of events about literature, such as the Voices event, and to receive mentorship along the way.

Seirce Mhac Conghail

Seirce is a third year student of English and Irish at Trinity College. They write regularly for Trinity Film Review and Trinity News, and are the Front of House Manager at DU Players. They write poetry and prose, and have been published in Dodging the Rain, ODD Magazine, Wondrous Real Magazine, and others. They write mostly poetry, but are trying out as many genres as they can at the moment. The pandemic has particularly highlighted the form of the radio play for them, which in lieu of live in-person theatre, is a lot of fun to explore.

What event are you most excited for?

I’m most looking forward to The New Novelists podcast with Róisín Ingle at the festival. I’m really intrigued by all three featuring authors- Susannah Dickey in particular, who I heard speak at a college event last year and am dying to hear again.

Why did you want to get involved in the Young Writer Delegate programme?

One of the reasons I applied for the Young Writer Delegate programme was to get the chance to listen to a diverse range of contemporary Irish writers talk about their work. I would like to write for a living some day, but with writing and art generally it seems there is never a straightforward template that leads to an actual career. Listening to the multiplicity of experiences, as well as receiving mentorship and advice from the brilliant Louise O’Neill, has definitely been illuminating. It’s been most encouraging of all to feel part of this writing community, even in a small way.

Sophie Furlong Tighe

Sophie Furlong Tighe is a poet and writer based in Dublin. They are the editor of Icarus magazine, and their work has been featured in Wax Nine, Sonder, and Variant Lit among others.  

What event are you most excited for?

I am really excited about The Queer Body: A poetry reading and discussion on November 3rd. It’s really exciting to be able to hear poetry read, especially work about queerness given we lost pride this year.

Why did you want to get involved in the Young Writer Delegate programme?

It’s such an honor to be involved with the festival, and discover so many different modes of creation and watch so many interesting discussions.