Surviving or Thriving? Panel Exchange 1: Literature

Panel Exchange 1: Literature

Monday 15 March, 10.30am (online)
Chair: Dr Maureen Gaffney
Speakers: Writers Anne Enright and Helena Close, and poet Stephen Sexton.

From Waterford Healing Arts Trust in partnership with the Arts Council.
Part of an online series of panel discussions, workshops and resources seeking to strengthen resilience, restore confidence and promote connectedness across the arts sector.

Click here for more info on Surviving or Thriving?

Listen to a recording of this event here:

Our sincere appreciation to our associate organisation Words Ireland for their support and guidance in putting this Literature strand together.

About the speakers:
Anne Enright is one of our leading writers. Her most recent books are No authority: Writings from the Laureateship (UCD Press) which is a collection of essays and short stories, and a novel Actress (Jonathan Cape). She is a Professor of Creative Writing at UCD.

Described by The Irish Times as “a born storyteller”, Limerick native Helena Close has been writing full time for the past 20 years. She has published eight novels, four of which were co-written. Her latest novel, The Gone Book, was published in April 2020 and was nominated for the Carnegie Award 2021, shortlisted for An Post YA Novel of the Year and chosen for inclusion in EmpathyLab UK’s 2021 selection. Her short story Then They Came For The Cats was shortlisted for the prestigious Bridport International Short Story Prize 2020. Her play Red Army, co-written with Marie Boylan, will be staged in the Lime Tree Theatre, Limerick this September. Helena is currently working on her fifth novel and a collection of short stories. She holds a Masters (first class honours) in Creative Writing from University of Limerick. She is Munster Rugby obsessed, loves cats and dogs and sometimes people.

Stephen Sexton’s first book, If All the World and Love Were Young was the winner of the Forward Prize for Best First Collection in 2019 and the Shine / Strong Award for Best First Collection. He was awarded the E.M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature in 2020. He was the winner of the National Poetry Competition in 2016 and the recipient of an Eric Gregory Award in 2018. He teaches at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University, Belfast.

Psychologist, writer and broadcaster Dr Maureen Gaffney earned a BA in Psychology from UCC, an MA in Behavioural Sciences from the University of Chicago and a PhD at Trinity College Dublin. She has completed Executive Education Programmes on leadership and governance in the Harvard Kennedy School, the University of Chicago Business School and the Kellogg School of Management. She is a member of the Harvard Kennedy School Women’s Leadership Board and served on its Executive Committee.

Dr Gaffney brings the latest research and thinking on emotional intelligence, resilience, and transformational leadership to her work with companies.  She has worked with a wide range of organisations, including Intel (Ireland and the US), Boston Scientific, Amazon, Google, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Bank of Ireland, Ulster Bank, as well as major professional service companies and the educational sector in Australia.

She is a much sought-after speaker and has addressed businesses in Ireland, the UK, the US, Sweden, Germany and Spain.  Dr Gaffney is a highly experienced chairperson and moderator in both the public and private sector including Executive Chair of the National Economic and Social Forum, Chair of the National Monitoring Committee of the Programme for Revitalising Areas by Planning, Investment and Development and Chair of the Insurance Ombudsman of Ireland Council for three years. She was a Board member of the HSE and has extensive experience of the health sector. She has retained a long-term interest in the legal sector since her ten year tenure as Law Reform Commissioner.  She has worked in many other sectors of Irish life – as Director of the Doctoral Programme in Clinical Psychology in Trinity College Dublin, Adjunct Professor of Psychology and Society in University College Dublin and she served on the board of the Council of the Economic and Social Research Institute.

A follow up workshop with poet Lani O’Hanlon entitled ‘Slowing down as a source of creativity’ exploring self-care for writers and others working in the literature sector takes place on Tues 16 March at 10.30am. More details here