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Welcome to the Munster
Literature Centre

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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Literature Centre
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Munster Literature Centre





Liz O'Donoghue


Born 1960 in North Cork, she attended UCC in late 1970s/early 1980s where she ran the poetry workshop and was first published in Quarryman, edited by Greg Delanty. She went on to be published in journals such as Poetry Ireland Review, Stet, The Shop, The Cork Review, The College Green, Southword, The Stony Thursday Book and Volume.

In 1991 she founded the "Live Poets Society" - a pub-based live poetry performance group which anticipated the open-mic movement of the 21st century. In 1995 she published the chapbook Waitress at the Banquet with Three Spires Press and had work included in the Cork University Press anthology Jumping Off Shadows - Some Contemporary Irish Poets. In 1998 a poem of hers was published into Hungarian and published in Magyar Naplo.

Between 1999 and 2000 she worked on directing a filmed anthology of Cork poets called In the Hands of Erato which was screened at the Cork Film Festival. In 2004 she received an artist's bursary from Cork City Council. In 2005 she translated the work of Sigitas Parulskis, a Lithuanian poet for the Cork Year of Culture translations project. Her debut collection, ‘Train To Gorey’, was published by Arlen House and launched in Dublin in November 2008.

She has one son and lives and works in Cork city.


Author Links

Review of Train to Gorey in Southword

In the Hands of Erato at the Cork Film Festival




Words Ireland

The Munster Literature Centre
is a constituent member
of Words Ireland.




The Gregory O'Donoghue
Poetry Competition

Gregory O Donoghue

Deadline: 30 November




Frank O'Connor
Short Story Fellowship

30 November 2017

Marie Helene Bertino
2017 Fellow:
Marie-Helene Bertino




Cork International
Poetry Festival

Cork International Short Story Festival

Annually in spring.




Fool for Poetry


Molly Minturn &
Bernadette McCarthy !


Seán Ó Faoláin
Short Story
Competition 2017

Sean O'Faolain Short Story Competition

Louise Nealon!




Southword Editions

on sale in
our bookstore


including Fool For Poetry
winners, the New Irish
Voices series & more






Read all the latest issues
of Southword journal
online here


Poetry International

Recent additions:

Ceaití Ní Bheildiúin
Kimberly Campanello
Justin Quinn
Brendan Cleary
Eleanor Hooker

& more




The Cork International
Short Story Festival

Cork International Short Story Festival

Annually in September






The Munster Literature Centre

Frank O'Connor House, 84 Douglas Street, Cork, Ireland.

Tel. (353) 021 4312955 Email

Irish Registered Charity No.12374