Date: September 13, 2022

Time: 2.00pm - 4.00pm

Duration: 6 Weeks

Level: Beginner | Emerging |

Cost: €165 (€150 Members)

Online/In Person: Online

All Irish Writers Centre remote courses take place on Irish Standard Time (GMT)

Course Summary:

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” – Mary Oliver

In this course you will explore different ways to access memory using a range of triggers and writing techniques.  You will read examples of memoir writing and think about the issues that arise in any memoir project – consideration of those whose lives intersect in our stories; how research might help the project, the options we have in terms of form and voice; issues of truth and fictionalisation. Students may work in prose or poetry and on one long or several short pieces.

Course Outline:

Each week a different prompt will be used to focus writing. Students will receive emailed copies of materials connected to the theme to be read before writing.  Writing will then be shared with all class members who will read the work before the following class when the writer will read their work and we will discuss and give feedback. In the process of sharing and critiquing work Maureen will focus on key aspects of memoir writing so that students can learn through the discussion about things like structure, choice of tense, voice, through line, imagery and so on.

Course Outcomes:

Participants should be able to take away improved confidence in their own writing and hopefully a volume of writing that should be a good foundation upon which to build as well as a wide range of references to other memoirs that they can explore.


Maureen Boyle grew up in Sion Mills, County Tyrone and now lives in Belfast.  Her third book and second full collection of poetry, The Last Spring of the World, is published by Arlen House, Dublin. This and her first collection, The Work of a Winter, published in 2018, include memoir pieces in both prose and poetic form, including ‘Luscus’ which won the Fish Short Memoir Prize in 2013. She guest arts edited a recent edition of Fortnight Magazine dedicated to memoir.