The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy at 40



With Erin Fornoff, Sarah Maria Griffin, Shane Hegarty, Colm O’Regan, Dave Rudden

In Conversation with Rick O’Shea

Saturday 16 November

Time: 7.30pm

Venue: Main Theatre, Smock Alley Theatre

€8/€6 concession, Booking advised


Don’t panic, but The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy turns 40 this year! Douglas Adams’ beloved novel was first published in 1979, and has since sold millions of copies worldwide. In celebration of its fortieth birthday, RTE broadcaster Rick O’Shea will be moderating an evening of H2G2 nerdery, for which he has assembled  a group of Irish authors who will be writing their own brand new entries to the guide and performing them on the night. He’ll also be leading a panel discussion on the series and its incredible lasting impact. Authors and panel members include Erin Fornoff, Sarah Maria Griffin, Shane Hegarty, Colm O’Regan and Dave Rudden. All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the Migrant Rights Centre Ireland.



Erin Fornoff, an American-born Irish citizen from the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina.  She has performed her poetry at hundreds of festivals and events across Ireland, UK, and the USA, including three times at Glastonbury Festival and two national Irish tours with poet Hollie McNish. She has featured on BBC3 The Verb with Phillip Pullman, at Hozier and James Taylor concerts, and performed a commissioned piece on the cultural revitalisation of Ireland for RTE Arena’s Culture Night at Dublin Castle.  Her poem ‘Hymn to the Reckless’ featured on posters and curriculum nationwide for Ireland’s National Poetry Day. Her work has featured in Best English and Irish Poets 2016, and won the Stanza Slam and Listowel Originals Competition. She was included in the 2014 Poetry Ireland Introductions Series and released a chapbook, ‘Folk Heroes,’ the same year. Her debut collection Hymn to the Reckless (Dedalus Press 2017) was shortlisted for the Shine/Strong Award for best first collection and named by The Millions as a ‘Must Read.’ She received an Arts Council bursary for her first novel and has an MPhil with Distinction in Creative Writing from Trinity College Dublin.

Sarah Maria Griffin‘s first novel, Spare and Found Parts, was published by Titan Books in Spring 2018 and was shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards that year. Her second, Other Words For Smoke, arrived in April 2019. Her collection of essays about emigration, Not Lost, was published by New Island Press in 2013. Her nonfiction has appeared in Winter Papers, Guts, The Stinging Fly and The Irish Times. She was the recipient of an Arts Council Bursary for Literature in 2017 and 2018, and is a winner of the European Science Fiction Chrysalis Award. She was the Writer in Residence in Maynooth University in 2017/18, the DLR Writer In Residence in 2018/19. She is presently developing a high-fantasy series of novels for the music festival, Tomorrowland – and her work was featured as part of the 2019 festival’s theme, The Book of Wisdom. She tweets @griffski.

Shane Hegarty is a children’s author. His Darkmouth fantasy-adventure series has been translated into over a dozen languages and is being adapted for a big screen animation. The first in his new series Boot – about a lost toy robot – is out now. He says The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is the biggest influence on his writing. That and coffee.

Colm O’Regan had a good job and a degree and everything but he gave it all up to try and be a comedian. He is also a columnist, broadcaster and anything else that will keep the wolf from the door. He heard there was fierce money in books so he has written five – the three bestselling books of Irish Mammies, Bolloxology, a title which neatly sums up his skillset and, most recently, Ann Devine, Ready For Her Close Up  a novel about a mother who volunteers for the local Tidy Towns group and ends up at the centre of a huge scandal. From Dripsey in County Cork, Colm now lives in Dublin but he’s up and down that road a good bit – especially since they put in the motorway.

Dave Rudden is the author of the award-winning Knights of the Borrowed Dark trilogy, as well as the Doctor Who anthology Twelve Angels Weeping. He enjoys cats, adventure and being cruel to fictional children. Follow him at @d_ruddenwrites.

Rick O’Shea has been a broadcaster with RTE since 2001, previously on RTE 2FM and as a presenter of RTE Radio 1’s The Poetry Programme. He currently presents weekday mornings on RTE Gold. He runs The Rick O’Shea Book Club (Ireland’s largest with over 26,000 members), hosts events and public interviews at book festivals all across the country, and has been the National Patron of Epilepsy Ireland since 2006. He is also a Book Ambassador for Easons, compiling the “Sinead And Rick’s Must Reads” lists 4 times a year with writer Sinead Moriarty. Rick has been curator of the Waterford Writers Weekend and was one of the judges for the 2018 Costa Book Awards in the UK.