Here’s a first – a collection of essays on the creative writing scene in Ireland by teachers and writers (the roles often overlap). Four Courts Press have put Imagination in the Classroom together with a chic New Yorker-style cover and a lively mix of opinions and philosophical musings contained within. The idea for the book grew out of a conference held in the RHA in October 2012 and is a snapshot of the creative writing teaching scene in Ireland. (I have to declare an interest – I’m in it!)
Notwithstanding that creative writing has now found a niche in the Irish university curriculum, many writers still find their way into the craft through community-based workshops and writing groups outside of academe. Happily, this sector is also represented with Roddy Doyle’s account of “Fighting Words” and Nessa O’Mahony’s article on teaching online with the Open University. But it would have been nice to have seen contributions from the indefatigable mentor and writer Yvonne Cullen (https://www.facebook.com/…/Yvonne–Cullens–Writing–Train/10227850) and poet/teacher Michael O’Loughlin, who spoke at the RHA conference, included in the mix.