John Banville was born in Wexford, Ireland, in 1945, and now lives in Dublin. He is the author of 17 novels including The Sea, which won the 2005 Booker Prize.
He has been described by the Guardian as writing “…novels of complex patterning, with grace, precision and timing, and there are wonderful digressive meditations … This is a writer who is not indifferent to the world’s indifference.”
John is also the author of the crime novels Christine Falls and The Silver Swan, which he wrote under the pseudonym Benjamin Black. The latest Benjamin Black novel, The Lemur, will be published in September 2008.
Issue 1: The Sinking City (a novel in progress)
Josh Bell's first book is No Planets Strike, published by the University of Nebraska Press in 2005. His poems have also appeared in 9th Letter, Boston Review, Hotel Amerika, Indiana Review, Triquarterly, Verse, and Volt.
He received his MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, is finishing his PhD for the University of Cincinnati, and is currently a member of the Creative Writing faculty at Columbia University's School of the Arts in New York.
Issue 1: Two poems
Tom French was born in Kilkenny in 1966. A graduate of NUI Galway and the University of Limerick, he has worked in Spain, France and the US. In 1999 he received a bursary in literature from An Chomhairle Ealaíon/The Arts Council, Ireland. His work was awarded the inaugural Ted McNulty Prize and was nominated for The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses (2002).
He lives with his family in county Meath where he works in the county library service. Touching the Bones, published by The Gallery Press in 2001, received the Forward Prize for First Collection, 2002. A second collection 'The Fire Step', is in the offing.
Issue 1: Four poems
Issue 2: Real Estate
Photo by Andrew Bennett
Larry Goves is a composer based in the UK. His music has been performed by the London Sinfonietta, the Nash Ensemble, the BBC Philharmonic, Psappha, The Hallé, The Continuum Ensemble and many others all over the UK and abroad.
He has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and New Zealand’s Concert FM and had pieces released on NMC and Dutton Epoch. He founded, writes for and performs electronics with the experimental music group the house of bedlam, with performances at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival and Faster than Sound 2008 among others. He currently teaches composition at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester and at Royal Holloway University.
Issue 1: Four Letter Words
Photo by Kim Lightbody
Vona Groarke’s poetry collections include Shale (1994), Other People's Houses (1999), Flight (2002) - which was shortlisted for the Forward Prize (UK) in 2002 and won the Michael Hartnett Award in 2003, and Juniper Street (2006). Her translation of the classic Irish poem by Eibhlin Dhubh Ni Chonaill was published as Lament for Art O'Leary in 2008.
She recently edited and introduced the Gallery Press edition of Oliver Goldsmith's The Deserted Village, and her poems have appeared in the Times Literary Supplement, The Yale Review, The Irish Times, P.N. Review, Poetry Review and Poetry London.
Vona has taught poetry at the Centre for New Writing since its launch in 2007.
Issue 1: Four poems
Kirsty Gunn was born in New Zealand and educated at Victoria University and Oxford. She is the author of five novels: The Boy and the Sea, Featherstone, The Keepsake, This Place You Return to Is Home and the critically acclaimed Rain, which was made into a feature film.
44 Things: A Year of Writing Life at Home was published by Atlantic in 2007, and her novels and short stories have been translated into eight languages. She lives in London and Scotland with her husband and two children.
Issue 1: Dirtybed
Photo by David Graham
Prize-winning novelist M.J. Hyland joined the Centre for New Writing as a Lecturer in Creative Writing in June 2007, having recently been awarded the Hawthornden prize and the Encore prize for best second novel for Carry Me Down (2006). The book was also short-listed for the Man Booker and the Commonwealth Writers prizes.
Maria is considered one of the leading members of the new generation of British and Irish novelists. Her work has been acclaimed by Ali Smith, Hilary Mantel and J.M. Coetzee, who said, "This is fiction writing of the highest order."
Issue 1: Selling Fakes
Hotly-tipped novelist Chris Killen’s first book, The Bird Room, will be published by Canongate in spring 2009 as part of a two-book deal.
He won the 2007 Manchester Literary Festival's Blog Award for his innovative fiction site Day of Moustaches, which includes a 100-chapter 'supermarket nightmare' novel written on a chapter-a-day basis, and is a fiction editor at 3:AM magazine.
Chris is a graduate of the MA in Creative Writing at The University of Manchester.
Issue 1: The Bird Room (extract)
Award-winning poet and short story writer Bill Manhire is recognised as among the finest New Zealand poets of his generation. He has won the New Zealand Book Awards poetry prize five times, and his most recent work, Lifted, also won the 2006 Montana Poetry Prize.
He has lectured in English and creative writing at the Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, since 1973, and is now director of the International Institute of Modern Letters there.
Issue 1: Two poems
Medbh McGuckian was born in 1950 in Belfast, where she lives with her family. She has been writer in residence at Queen's University, Belfast, the University of Ulster, Coleraine and Trinity College, Dublin, and Visiting Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley.
She has won England's National Poetry Competition, the Cheltenham award, the Rooney prize, the Bass Ireland Award for Literature, the Denis Devlin award and The Forward Prize for Best Poem. She received the American Ireland Fund Literary award in 1998.
Her books published by Gallery Press include The Face of the Earth (2002), The Book of the Angel (2004) and My Love Has Fared Inland (October 2008).
Issue 1: Three poems
Photo by Suella Holland
Paul Muldoon was born in County Armagh in 1951. He published his first collection of poems, New Weather, in 1973, followed by nine more including Mules (1977), Meeting The British (1987), Hay (1998), Moy Sand and Gravel (2002), for which he received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, and Horse Latitudes (2006).
Since 1987 he has lived in the US, where he is Howard G. B. Clark Professor in the Humanities at Princeton. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he won the 1994 T. S. Eliot Prize, an American Academy of Arts and Letters award in 1996, the 1997 Irish Times Poetry Prize, and the 2003 Griffin Prize.
Issue 1: More Geese
Photo by Norman McBeath
Roshanak Pashaee, born in Iran, writes based on her experience of being in close contact with socially vulnerable women. Ignorance is what causes these woman to suffer, she believes.
Except her first few short stories, written in Persian, most of her work consists of essays and translations, also in her mother tongue and published locally. “Hamid” is her first work of prose fiction in English.
Issue 1: Hamid
Neil Rollinson was a 2005 winner of the Cholmondeley award, an annual award for poetry given by the UK’s Society of Authors. He spent two years as writer in residence at Wordworth’s Dove Cottage in the Lake District, before becoming the Centre for New Writing’s first writer in residence in October 2007.
His fourth collection of poetry, Demolition, was published as he took up the post, and was described by Alan Brownjohn in the Sunday Times as “…surely his best book…” Previous collections include A Spillage of Mercury (1996) and Spanish Fly (2001).
Issue 1: Backing a Loser
Issue 8: The Field
Ali Smith was born in Inverness in 1962. She is the author of Free Love, Like, Other Stories and Other Stories, Hotel World, The Whole Story and Other Stories, The Accidental and Girl Meets Boy.
Among her many prizes are a Scottish Arts Council award, the Scottish Arts Council Book of the Year award and the Whitbread Novel award. She has also been shortlisted for both the Orange Prize for Fiction and the Booker prize.
A regular contributor of articles and reviews to journals and newspapers, she now lives in Cambridge.
Issue 1: Last
Photo by Sarah Wood
Matthew Welton’s debut poetry collection, The Book of Matthew, won the Jerwood-Aldeburgh First Collection Prize in 2003. His work has also appeared in Faber's First Pressings and Carcanet’s New Poetries II, and is renowned for its playful and experimental approach to using language’s sounds and rhythms.
Matthew was described by Dave Gorman in the Observer as having “consistently …produced some stunningly beautiful work.” He is a former editor of Stand magazine, and teaches creative writing at the University of Bolton.
Issue 1: Four-letter words
John Hartley Williams was born in Cheshire and grew up in London. He has worked as a teacher in France, Yugoslavia and Cameroon. Since 1976 he has taught at the Free University of Berlin.
His first collection of poems Hidden Identities (1982) was followed by Bright River Yonder (1987), Cornerless People (1990), Double (1994) and Canada (1997). Ignoble Sentiments, a prose memoir was published in 1995. His collection Spending Time with Walter was published in 2001 and followed in 2002 by a book of prose poems Mystery in Spiderville. His has also appeared in numerous anthologies.
Issue 1: Poets