Tag Archives: plans

New Beginnings

2016-12-28-13-27-30Winter sojourn at Tyn-ny-Pant, Builth Wells, Wales thanks to veteran playwright Donald Howarth.

Socially, politically that was a stinker of a year. Selfishly, I have to say that professionally, for me, it was kind of groovy. I had an arts council funded without decor production of my stage play, “Brazen Strap” at the King’s Head Theatre, Islington. A play of mine was workshopped at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin. I was a finalist for the Nick Darke Award, the Eamon Keane Award and the Old Vic 12 and was granted a Peggy Ramsay bursary to fund my writing. I had my bi-lingual radio play “Blue King” produced and broadcast in Ireland. I was awarded a two week stay at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre for artists in Co. Monaghan, Ireland. I upgraded on my PhD and I got to spend time in the Loire Valley and Paris. I was promoted to Deputy Literary Manager at the Finborough, and attended a Criterion Theatre course in comedy writing. All of the above brought me into closer and new contact with interesting, talented and inspirational people.

Of course, every year brings its challenges and meeting them with grace is sometimes a challenge in itself! However, I think I’m doing alright – I’ve nurtured my friendships and I think I was there for friends and family when they needed me. So, I leave 2016 feeling good personally, if rather worried about the shape of things to come internationally.

I wouldn’t have achieved anything last year if I had not applied to all sorts of schemes and programmes, competitions and awards, theatres and theatre companies, media houses and arts bodies. It’s important to keep on keeping on. Put your work out there. Be tenacious. Make a plan and if it fails, make another.

Here’s hoping that 2017 will bring many good things, and the strength to deal with what look like bad things, with grace and optimism.

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Be Good in 2013

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I’m back in Norwich following a stint on Inis Oirr as artist-in-residence, which has (I think) birthed a one man play. It was a significant month spent in a dramatic two mile long theatre edged with thrashing waves, and crossed with stone walls, fields created from seaweed and topped with goats – lots of wild goats. During my time there I learned to felt, started up a writing group with some local scribes – which is continuing on – and thought and walked a lot and came to some decisions about my future and where my writing is going.

I had a few bits of bad news while I was out on the island, some personal stuff that unsettled me, and also I learned that man a grew up with was tragically drowned whilst fishing off the Waterford coast. These incidents coloured my thought processes and made me dwell on some topics that I might otherwise have avoided. And I’m glad I let myself go there. I believe I’ve created good art.

I returned to pick up an award. It hasn’t been officially announced yet,, so more on that later. And my play ‘Cow’ is going into the studio next week so I’m pretty focused on that at the moment. One of my parting gifts from the kind people of Inis Oirr was a big 2013 wall chart (in Irish) which I’m now filling up. 2013 looks like it is going to be a year of change. A year of travel and a year of moving forward.  Right now, I’m ready for action and am lining all my plans up.  Life is too short, make the best of it, surround yourself with good people and do good things.