Welcome to the Munster
Founded in 1993, the Munster Literature Centre (Ionad Litríochta an Deiscirt) is a non-profit arts organisation dedicated to the promotion and celebration of literature, especially that of Munster. To this end, we organise festivals, workshops, readings and competitions. Our publishing section, Southword Editions, publishes a biannual journal, poetry collections and short stories. We actively seek to support new and emerging writers and are assisted in our efforts through funding from Cork City Council, Cork County Council and the Arts Council of Ireland.Originally located in Sullivan's Quay, the centre moved to its current premises in the Frank O'Connor House (the author's birthplace) at 84 Douglas Street, in 2003.
In 2000, the Munster Literature Centre organised the first Frank O'Connor International Short Story Festival, an event dedicated to the celebration of the short story and named for one of Cork's most beloved authors. The festival showcases readings, literary forums and workshops. Following continued growth and additional funding, the Cork City - Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award was introduced in 2005, coinciding with Cork's designation as that year's European Capital of Culture. The award is now recognised as the single biggest prize for a short story collection in the world and is presented at the end of the festival.In 2002, the Munster Literature Centre introduced the Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize, an annual short story competition dedicated to one of Ireland's most accomplished story writers and theorists. This too is presented during the FOC festival. The centre also hosts the Cork Spring Literary Festival each year, at which the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Prize is awarded (established 2010).
Workshops are held by featured authors in both autumn and spring, allowing the general public to receive creative guidance in an intimate setting for a minimal fee. In addition, the centre sponsors a Writer in Residence each year. We invite you to browse our website for further information regarding our events, Munster literature, and other literary information. Should you have any queries, we would be happy to hear from you.
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THE SEÁN Ó FAOLÁIN SHORT
2015 competition opening for submissions in May.
Judge: Danielle McLoughlin
Want to be the first to know when next year's competition opens for submissions?
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THE 2014 WINNING & COMMENDED STORIES
can now be read in Southword Journal
Susan Maier-Moul's 'Pleasure' (USA)
Kathy Conde's 'This is the place where it all breaks down: A family alphabet' (USA)
Annemarie Neary's 'Remote Control' (UK)
Brian Petkash's 'Flood' (USA)
Ger Galvin's 'Crow' (IRELAND)
Julia Patt's 'Stealing the Ace' (USA)
Highly Recommended Stories
(Longlist in alphabetical order)
Dominique Cleary's 'Dopamine & Debussy' (IRELAND)
Jane Harrington's 'All God's Children Gonna Take a Ride' (USA)
Martin Keating's 'Six Thirteen' (IRELAND)
Lyn Di Iorio's 'Girl with Translucent Skin' (USA)
Trisha McKinney's 'Bicycle Wheel' (IRELAND)
Maura Pelletieri's 'Whale' (USA)
Pauline Ryan's 'Tablecloth' (AUSTRALIA)
Richard Scarsbrook's 'Blink' (CANADA)
Jill Widner's 'The Empty Houses' (USA)
Michelle Wright's 'Blur' (AUSTRALIA)
First Prize: €2,000 (approx $2760/£1640 in April 2014), publication in the literary journal Southword,
AND a week-long residency at Anam Cara Writer's and Artist's Retreat.
Second Prize: €500 and publication in Southword.
Four other shortlisted entries will be selected for publication in Southword and receive a publication fee of €120.
The Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition is an annual short story competition open to writers from around the world, submissions accepted from May to July annually. It is dedicated to one of Ireland’s most accomplished story writers and theorists, sponsored by the Munster Literature Centre. If the winner comes to Cork to collect their prize, we will lavish them with hotel accommodation, meals, drinks and VIP access to the literary stars at the Cork International Short Story Festival (16 - 20 September 2014). The Munster Literature Centre is a not-for-profit organisation; all moneys raised from the competition benefits writers and writing.
Anam Cara Writer's and Artist's Retreat www.anamcararetreat.com is again awarding a week-long residency to the first prize winner of the Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition. Located just outside the colourful village of Eyeries on the Beara Peninsula in West Cork, Anam Cara is a tranquil spot structured to provide support and sanctuary for people working in the creative arts. It offers private and common working rooms as well as five acres of walking paths, thirty-four nooks and crannies, a river cascades and a river island, gardens, and a labyrinth meadow. Editoral consultation is also available. The prize is valued at €700. (The dates of the residency will be arranged between the writer themselves and Anam Cara, and can be scheduled before or after the week of the Cork International Short Story Festival. Otherwise, the week can be scheduled for another time of the year, at Anam Cara's discretion.)
More about the 2014 Judge
Judge: Author of Bloodlines, current fiction editor of Southword Journal and winner of the 2006 Seán Ó Faoláin Prize Joyce Russell.
Joyce Russell grew up in the Yorkshire Dales and in 1978 moved to Bantry in west Cork to live the self-sufficiency dream. She has won or been shortlisted on multiple occasions for the Sean O Faolain Short Story Award, The Real Writers International Award, and the START Chapbook prize, the Bridport Prize, the RTE Francis MacManus Short Story Competition and the FISH Short Story Competition. She is a founder member of Friends of the Earth Ireland and is co-author with her husband, Ben, of The Polytunnel Book.
SEÁN Ó FAOLÁIN ANTHOLOGY
More information about the Seán Ó Faoláin Prize print anthology here, containing the winning stories from the last 10 years of the competition.
Fool for Poetry
31 May 2015
Fool For Poetry
& Virginia Astley
Southword Issue 27
New issue, free to read online.
Short Story Festival
15 - 19 September
Short Story Award
World's richest prize
a short story collection,
co-sponsored by the
UCC School of English
Cork City Council.
Seán Ó Faoláin
at the MLC