I learnt this hashtag this week.

The week I had the privilege of attending the John Hewitt International Summer School  on a bursary.

The week I spent in Armagh, city on a hill, city of cathedrals, city of St Patrick.

St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh

The week the sun shone.

The week there was a lunar eclipse. Then the rain was biblical.

The week I was published in The Irish Times.

The week I turned forty-***

The week I heard Patrick Gale talk about writing and graphs in the same sentence, Liz Nugent tell us that Leonardo di Caprio’s television production company has picked up Unravelling Oliver, saw Mikel Murfi play a cast of characters so convincingly I forgot it was a one-man show, learned secrets of short story writing with Mary O’Donnell, secrets of publishing with Jan Carson and enjoyed the osmosis of creativity that was in The Market Place Theatre.

I am exhausted. But elated.

At the end of the week I read the story I had started in the workshop and finished in the secret garden.

The Cathedral Gardens

It’s not really a secret garden but it was for me. I sat there in the sun and let the words flow. And then I read them out loud.

Reading at the Market Place Theatre


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