Rolling Sun rises this week

Going Out

INSIGHTS FOR AUTHORS  Author and newspaper columnist Martina Devlin, who will host a masterclass in writing historical fiction this Sunday as part of the Rolling Sun Book Festival.

Memoirs, crime, children’s books and more in diverse programme

Fans of the late Hilary Mantel, author of the acclaimed Wolfhall books, may be interested in the Imagining History masterclass being run as part of the Rolling Sun Book Festival, which starts this week and runs from Thursday, November 3, to Sunday, November 6.
The workshop is being presented by Martina Devlin, award-winning newspaper columnist and author of several historical fiction books. Ms Devlin, who also has the distinction of being the first holder of a PhD in literary practice from Trinity College Dublin, will be sharing insights into how to bring life to historical fiction with guidance on how to build character, the importance of dialogue, setting and beginnings and endings.
“No one will have a novel at the end of the session – but they should have a clearer idea about how to press on with writing one,” says Devlin.
The two-hour masterclass will be held in the Clew Bay Hotel next Sunday, November 6, at 11.30am, details at    
Four authors shortlisted for this year’s prestigious An Post Book Awards are also among the guests at the festival: Crime writers Catherine Ryan Howard and Andrea Mara, are shortlisted for their latest books; Paul Howard, co-author of Roddy Collins’s memoir, is shortlisted for Sports Book of the Year; and Kit de Waal, whose memoir, ‘Without Warning & Only Sometimes’, is up for Biography of the Year.
“We’re delighted to see so many of our authors in the running for the awards,” said Ursula Skerritt of the Rolling Sun committee. “And we’re happy to have such a strong programme for the first Rolling Sun festival since 2019.”
Kit de Waal, who burst onto the literary scene with her award-winning debut, ‘My Name is Leon’, will discuss her work with journalist and broadcaster Barbara Scully at 8pm on Thursday in The Mariner Hotel, Westport.
Catherine Ryan Howard and Andrea Mara will be joined by another bestselling Irish crime writer, Patricia Gibney, to talk about the reading public’s fascination with crime on Friday evening.
While Paul Howard is probably best known for his Ross O’Carroll Kelly books, his children’s book, ‘Aldrin Adams’ and ‘The Cheese Nightmares’, will be the theme of the event for young readers in Westport on Sunday.
Westport woman Eithne Ring, whose moving memoir, ‘Does My Son Take Sugar?’, was published this year is among the other participants in this year’s festival. Eithne will be talking to Barbara Scully, author of ‘Wise Up: Power, Wisdom, and the Older Woman’, about their respective books at an event on Saturday morning.

A full list of Rolling Sun events can be found at