Paul Maddern’s first collection The Beachcomber’s Report, launched late last year in England at the Derwent Poetry Festival and at No Alibis Bookshop in Belfast , is shortlisted in the Rupert & Eithne Strong Award for Best First Collection by an Irish Poet in 2010.
It’s the second consecutive shortlisting in the Strong Award for a Templar Poet and the fifth first collection, from seven published, to appear in a major first collection shortlist.
The Rupert and Eithne Strong Award recognises first collections published in English or Irish by Irish poets in 2010.
The shortlist for 2011 is:
Caitríona Ní Chléirchín Crithloinnir
Órfhlaith Foyle Red Riding Hood’s Dilemma
Publisher: Arlen House
Paul Maddern The Beachcomber’s Report
Publisher: Templar Poetry
Grace Wells When God Has Been Called Away to Greater Things
Publisher: Dedalus Press
Caitríona Ní Chléirchín won first prize in the Oireachtas competition for new writers 2010 for her first collection of poetry Crithloinnir, published in July 2010. She writes reviews, academic and journalistic articles and has published poetry in Comhar, Feasta and Blaiseadh Pinn, Cyphers, an t-Ultach and An Guth. She is an Irish-language lecturer in University College Dublin and is completing a doctorate on the poetry of Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill and Biddy Jenkinson. She spent a year in Lyon, France studying a masters in French literature. She is originally from Emyvale in Co. Monaghan.
Órfhlaith Foyle was born in Africa to Irish parents, and currently lives in Galway . Her debut poetry collection Red Riding Hood’s Dilemma (Arlen House) was preceded by a first novel Belios (Lilliput Press) and a collection of short fiction and poetry, Revenge (Arlen House) both in 2005. She is currently working on her second novel. Arlen House will shortly publish her debut short fiction collection, Somewhere in Minnesota, the title story of which appears in the Faber Book of Irish Short Stories edited by Joe O’Connor.
Paul Maddern was born in Bermuda of Irish and Cornish stock. After time in San Francisco and London he moved to Co. Down in 2000. In 2006 he won the James Kilfedder Memorial Bursary and was included in Poetry Ireland ’s Introductions series of readings. In 2009, he won the Templar Poetry Pamphlet Competition, resulting in the publication Kelpdings. In 2010, Templar published his debut collection, The Beachcomber’s Report. He is currently completing a PhD at the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queen’s University Belfast, for which he has established an online archive of poets reading in public.
Grace Wells was born in London in 1968. Formerly an independent television producer, she moved to Ireland in 1991. Her first book, Gyrfalcon (2002), a novel for children, won the Eilis Dillon Best Newcomer Bisto Award, and was an International White Ravens’ Choice. Other publications for children include Ice-Dreams (2008) and One World, Our World (2009). Her short stories and poetry have been published widely and broadcast. She reviews Irish poetry for Contrary, the University of Chicago ‘s online literary journal, is a freelance arts administrator, and teaches creative writing. When God Has Been Called Away to Greater Things is published be Dedalus Press.
The prize-winner will receive €2,500. The short-listed nominees will read at the Strong Reading on Sunday 27th March during the dlr Poetry Now 2011 Festival. The winner will be announced at the Strong Reading by the 2011 judge Michael Cronin.
The award is made possible by the generous support of the Strong Family in memory of the lives and work of Rupert and Eithne Strong.
dlr Poetry Now Festival 2011 runs from the 24th – 27th of March. The festival programme will be available on www.poetrynow.ie from mid-February.