March 29, 2023

7pm - 8pm



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Join us for the online launch of The Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair 2024 with guests Lauren Mackenzie, Gráinne Fox and Alan McMonagle. 

Tune in to this panel discussion, chaired by IWC’s Programming Officer Betty Stenson, to learn first-hand experiences of the Novel Fair journey: from submission to selection, what happens at the Novel Fair itself, and finally, to the process of finding an agent or a publisher –  and beyond. The discussion will also provide insider tips on how writers might prepare their submissions ahead of the Novel Fair deadline and ways to catch the attention of a Novel Fair judge.

This event marks the beginning of Novel Fair 2024, raising the call for our next cohort of talented writers to start fine-tuning their manuscripts in anticipation for the competition deadline (September 2023).

About the Panelists

Lauren Mackenzie (Novel Fair 2021 winner) grew up in Sydney, Australia but now lives in Dublin with her family. After a long career as a screenwriter and editor in film and television, she returned to fiction in 2o17, completing an MA in Creative Writing in UCD. She was shortlisted for Cuirt New Writing Prize, Hennessy New Irish Writing, and Fish Short Story Prize. She has been published in The Stinging Fly, The MothBanshee, the Irish Times, and The Lonely Crowd among others. Recently she was awarded Literature Bursaries by the Arts Council of Ireland and in 2021, her debut novel, The Couples, was a joint winner of the Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair 2021. The Couples is being published by John Murray Press this July and the TV rights have been optioned by House Productions UK.

Gráinne Fox is a seasoned Literary Agent with two decades of experience representing award-winning novelists, NYT bestselling journalists, and academics. Before joining UTA in 2023, she worked at Fletcher & Company for many years and before that, she worked in London with Ed Victor. Her clients have been shortlisted for, or won, various awards including The William Hill Sports Book of The Year, The Booker Prize, The Women’s Prize, The Irish Book Awards, The British Book Awards, The Orwell Prize, The Plutarch Award, the RTÉ Short Story Competition and the NBCC.

Alan McMonagle was a Novel Fair 2023 judge and has written for radio and published two collections of short stories Liar Liar and Psychotic Episodes. His first novel, Ithaca, was published by Picador in 2017 and a second novel Laura Cassidy’s Walk Of Fame was published in 2020.

Novel Fair

Novel Fair is an opportunity not to be missed, there have been countless success stories since it was established 12 years ago. This annual writing competition introduces up-and-coming writers to top publishers and literary agents as a prize for being one of the 12 Novel Fair winners. Giving novelists the opportunity to bypass the slush pile, they win the chance to pitch their ideas and send their synopsis and sample chapters directly to the inboxes of publishers and agents.

Submissions to Novel Fair 2024 will be via Submittable and will open on Thursday 1 September 2023.

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