Date: August 27, 2024

Time: 6.30 pm - 8.30 pm

Duration: 6 weeks

Level: Beginner | Emerging |

Cost: €165 (€150 Members)

Location: Irish Writers Centre

This course will take place in person on Tuesdays (six sessions in total).

Course Summary

Each class will comprise of two elements: close reading of personal essays and workshopping of personal essay extracts written by course participants.

Course Outline

Week One: VOICE:  Michel de Montaigne, Elizabeth Hardwick

Week Two: FORM: Lydia Davis, James Baldwin

Week Three: STYLE: Zadie Smith, Rob Doyle

Week Four: DRAMATISATION: Tim MacGabhann, Virginia Woolf

Week Five: REFLECTION: Emily Pine, Joan Didion

Week Six: ETHICS: Megan Nolan, David Foster Wallace

Course Outcomes

At the end of this course, writers will return to their work with inspiration and a deeper understanding of the craft of the personal essay.

Cathy Sweeney’s collection of short stories, MODERN TIMES, her was published by The Stinging Fly Press and W&N in 2020. Her debut novel, BREAKDOWN, was published by W&N in January 2024. Cathy has twice been awarded a Literature Bursary from The Arts Council of Ireland and in 2022 she was Writer in Residence at University College Cork. In 2023 she was the recipient of a Hawthornden Fellowship.

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