Welcome to the DBF Lounge!

Sit down and relax in the DBF Lounge- where we at the towers have a chat with some of this year’s authors. We find out everything from who influenced them most to what they would most like to steal from another author if they could!

logonewFor the second interview in our Publisher Interview Series we talk to Mary Feehan, MD of Mercier Press, Ireland’s oldest independent publishing house.

Q: As a publishing house, 2014 marks your 70th anniversary: as well as being a remarkable achievement, this offers you a unique insight into the publishing industry within Ireland. What changes have you noticed during that time? What changes would you like to see in the future?

There have been huge changes in production methods from metal typesetting which is how we set all of our books when I first began to work at Mercier. Printing was a highly skilled craft and typesetters had to learn that craft through a long apprenticeship. Now people can publish their own books online with the press of a button. It’s wonderful that the market has opened up so much but it was sad to see such a craft disappear. There are also many more bookshops and publishers in Ireland now which contributes to a diverse and interesting publishing industry. Thankfully the Irish love to read Irish books so we continue to have a wide audience.

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In the first of our Publisher Interview Series, we talk to the founding Editor of The Stinging Fly Press, Declan Meade.

Q: As a publisher, The Stinging Fly Press has been around for just under a decade now, achieving great success with the likes of Kevin Barry, Mary Costello, and most recently Colin Barrett: what changes have you noticed in the publishing industry in Ireland during that time? What changes would you like to see in the future?

I think publishing is a lot more lively here now than it was ten years ago and this is on account of new publishers arriving on the scene and also, in some cases, new people coming on board at the existing houses. There are now more publishers producing not just more books but a wider range of books. That has to be good for writers and for readers.

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Publisher Interview Series

by Admin on July 25, 2014

This year, in the run-up to Dublin Book Festival 2014, we will be conducting a number of interviews with various authors and publishers, with the aim of giving a better understanding into the workings of the publishing industry in Ireland.

To start with, we will be talking to different Irish Publishers over the next few weeks, showcasing their ethos as a press and asking for their insights into the current climate of Irish publishing and also what advice they would offer to budding authors.

The first of these interviews will be online at the end of next week.


DBF Book Club interviews Mark O’Sullivan

by Admin on November 6, 2013

Mark O'Sulivan

In Mark O’Sullivan’s crime novel, Crocodile Tears, a murder takes place with the aftermath of the recent global recession as a backdrop. It’s 2010, and property developers face off squarely against those trying to gain footing on the property ladder, “pure” Irish vie for space and jobs with newcomers, and lucky recipients of newfound wealth wrestle with the power it brings.


DBF: How hard was it to put yourself in detective mode? Did that come easily to you?

Number one, I’ve never been a policeman and to tell you the truth, I don’t know too many, nor do I want to know too many! A lot of writers have said that writing is essentially about observation, whether that be landscape, or –

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DBF Interviews Ciarán Collins

by Admin on November 6, 2013

Ciarán CollinsCiarán Collins’ debut novel The Gamal was published last April by Bloomsbury in Ireland, UK and Australia and more recently in the US. Ciarán was born in 1977 and grew up in the village of Innishannon, West Cork. He is a secondary school teacher in Bandon and he lives in Kinsale.

Join Ciarán and our other book club authors at the DBF Book Club event Saturday, 16 November. You can book tickets here. [click to continue…]


DBF Interviews Janet Cameron

by Admin on October 29, 2013

Janet CameronJanet E Cameron is a Canadian writer living in Dublin. In early 2013 her first novel, Cinnamon Toast and the End of the World, was published to critical acclaim in Ireland and Canada. Cinnamon Toast was also a winner of a place at the Irish Writers’ Centre’s inaugural Novel Fair.

See this year’s programme for a chance to meet Janet on the 16th November at The Irish Writer’s Centre. See link for details: DBF 2013 Programme

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DBF Interviews Caroline Grace-Cassidy

by Admin on October 25, 2013

Caroline Grace-Cassidy

Caroline Grace-Cassidy was born in Dublin. She lives in Knocklyon with her husband Kevin and two daughters Grace and Maggie. Caroline works extensively as a writer, television and film actress and as a regular panelist for Midday on TV3. She is the author of When Love Takes Over, The Other Side of Wonderful and the forthcoming Fake.

Caroline will be at the DBF Book Club event on Saturday, 16 November. You can book tickets here, as well as read up on all our book club offerings, including book reviews and discussion questions, here.

How does a sense of place (or  a sense of “Irishness”) play into your writing? How influenced are you as an author by your culture?

I have a huge sense of where I come from in all my writing. I am very patriotic. I grew up reading Irish authors and the sense of their settings are so vivid in my mind. Fictional Irish places, but the realness of the characters like the ones of Maeve Binchy, creates this place in Ireland that you are sure you have been to before. Ireland is my backdrop, and its culture and traditions and people all play a huge part in my stories. My first novel, When Love Takes Over, was based on a single thirty-something Dublin woman who was trying to find her place in her life both in career and in love. She had all the issues a lot of women in her stage of life had and I wanted to look at them honestly, from binge drinking to one-night stands to finally trusting and believing in herself as a confident Irish woman. I write about the Ireland I see around me and am a true believer in writing what you know about. Dublin plays a big part in this. [click to continue…]


DBF Interviews Siobháin Bunni

by Admin on October 22, 2013

Siobhain bunniBorn in Baghdad, Iraq, Siobháin Bunni is one six children born to her Irish Mother and Iraqi Father. Educated in Kylemore Abbey, Connemara, before graduating from the College of Marketing & Design, she is married to Ross and lives in Malahide, Co. Dublin with their three children. Dark Mirrors is her debut novel.

Siobháin, along with three other writers, will be reading on 15 November. Tickets may be booked here.

DBF: Were you always interested in writing? If not, what made you decide to write? Did it come about suddenly for you?

I was always interested in writing in some form. I always kept a diary and I liked to write when I travelled. I wrote short poems and whatnot, so it’s always been there. I never really thought seriously about it, but when I found myself at a bit of a loose end, I started to do something about it for my own personal satisfaction. I found one of those old diaries from school and it’s actually quite funny. There was a little hint of drama in there, so I think I was a bit of a drama queen. [click to continue…]


The New Dubliners

by Admin on October 19, 2013

Daniel Zuchowski 2The New Dubliners is a newly emerged blog, which has sparked great attention here with us at the Dublin Book Festival. The Blog Offers followers a little taste of everything from the literary world, showcasing short stories based around our very capital. It is an exciting new experiment and a fascinating read as readers catch a glimpse into the true experiences, memories and stories from people living in Dublin. Soon to be compiled into a book, The New Dubliners is a taster of what is to come. It  is a perfect example of the power of memory and the sharing of tales.

I caught up with Daniel Zuchowski, the creator of the website and got the low down and what we are in for before the book makes its launch:

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Gerry Hunt talks Comics

by Admin on October 19, 2013

Gerry Hunt ImageHunt worked for twenty-five years as an architect, eighteen of them with the IDA. In 1986 he left architecture and began drawing political cartoons. From this, he moved on to drawing entire comics – his first, self-produced comic was a rhyming Spanish-language work that he gave away to friends. He has since published In Dublin City and The Streets of Dublin. The Streets of Dublin was included in an exhibition entitled ‘Artists’ Books’ in the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. He is also the author of Blood Upon The Rose: The Rebellion That Set Ireland Free and of At War with the Empire: Ireland’s Fight for Independence. A travelling exhibition of the artwork from Blood Upon the Rose was held in various locations around Ireland, including St Enda’s and Kilmainham Gaol. 1913 Larkin’s Labour War is Gerry’s latest graphic novel.

Catch Gerry at this year’s festival Graphic Novel workshop on Sunday 17th Novemeber – Book Now

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