Work of Art 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is WORK OF ART.

The prompt begins:  “Art isn’t just painting and sculptures . . . ”

Self is spending May at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig and she’s been writing with great concentration, every single day.  WOW.  It helps that every other artist here is working just as hard.

Her tally of short stories begun and revised in the last two weeks:  12.  Of which 4 are completely new — started from scratch after she arrived here.  She’s never been this productive and focused, ever ever ever.

This is next to the front door of my farmyard cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig.

This poster hangs right next to the front door of self’s farmyard cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig.  It’s such a nurturing place, self is so happy she decided to come!

The cook at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre is a wonder.  Self has gained weight here, no question.  Will you just look at one of her sumptuous desserts!  Her name is Lavina.  Self cannot explain how she has gone decades without hearing that name, and all of a sudden she’s seen a play — Titus Andronicus at The Globe — with a character named Lavinia. And no sooner had she arrived at the TGC than she was introduced to the cook, whose name is — Lavina.

Synchronicity, much?

Self had to ask the name of this dessert, which followed dinner one night:  It's a Pavlova.

Self had to ask the name of this dessert, which followed dinner one night: It’s a Pavlova.

The friends who drove her to the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, that first day, also took her to lunch at St. Kyran’s.  That was where self saw her first wild swans.  And afterwards, she heard a very sad story about a King whose children were turned into swans by their evil Stepmother.  They had to stay in swan form for 900 years.

Did you know that it is a crime to kill a swan here in Ireland?  There are six swans who live on the lake in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre.  One is a lone wolf, self frequently sees it with its behind in the air while it scavenges food from the lake.

St. Kyran's restaurant, on the way to Annaghmakerrig. The chef is Connor McCan. Self had duck. What an amazing concoction!

St. Kyran’s restaurant, on the way to Annaghmakerrig. The chef is Conor McCann. Self had duck. What an amazing concoction!  Holy Moly, how self’s girth doth grow here in Ireland!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Another Day at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Anaghmakkerig, Another Irish Writer Discovered

The writer today is David Park.  Here’s a short bio:

Oranges From Spain, a volume of short stories, set against the background of the Troubles, was first published in the 1980s.  Since then, David Park has written five novels:  The Healing, The Rye Man, Stone Kingdoms, The Big Snow, and Swallowing the Sun.  A teacher, he lives in County Down with his wife Alberta and their two children.

Park was interviewed in Netting the Flow, “the first anthology of work by members of the Comber Reading and Creative Writing Group.”

Which of your books gave you the most satisfaction to write?

I don’t often dwell on past books and I never go back to them after they’re written.  There is an element of fear in this because I’m probably frightened that they’ll disappoint me and when they’re out in the world it’s too late to call them back to try and remedy real or imagined imperfections.  This feeling of apprehension is both a positive and a negative because it’s the constant dissatisfaction that acts as the spur to try and try again.  So when I’m asked about favourite books, the truth is that there are only books that dissatisfy me less than others.

Speaking of favorite books, self brought copies of two of her collections —  Mayor of the Roses and The Lost Language — with her on this trip.  One copy of The Lost Language went to Joan McGavin (the 2014 Hampshire Poet) and her husband, who so patiently put self up, when she first arrived in the UK.  She’d never been to Southampton before; Joan met self at the station and then took self to see a play staged in Her Majesty’s Prison in Winchester, in which all of the male roles were acted by prison inmates, and the female roles by students in the University of Winchester.  (This would never have happened in the States, let her tell ya.  They’d be too worried about the young women rehearsing with inmates.)  It was a very excellent play.  Set in World War I, about conscientious objectors and how they were reviled.

She’s managed to give away all her copies except one, her last copy of Mayor of the Roses.  She offered poet Csilla Today a choice of which of self’s collections she wanted to trade her poetry collection for, and she picked The Lost Language.  Interesting choice!  Then self went into her usual disclaimer, telling Csilla the stories were rather “dark.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.


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