Deansgrange Writers Put The ‘P’ Back in Publishing

Yes, I went on one of my rants yesterday. Sometimes you look into the distance and miss what is important when it is right under your own nose. Self-Publishing takes many authors into the unfamiliar global hemisphere. For most, that is never the objective. I think it fitting tonight that we should forget the Thomas Nelson’s and Harlequin’s and all the current debate and focus on an aspect of self-publishing which gets easily forgotten in the malaise of argument. Self-publishing is not just about the self, it is also about the community, and in particular about the community of authors.

The best thing any aspiring author can do is join a writing workshop. It is a change to escape the environs of sister or dad saying your writing is ‘marvelous’. It is a chance to have your work critiqued by peers and seek guidance from objective supporters – if there is such a thing. I’m going to be local and self indulgent here. But then, after the last couple of weeks debate, it comes as a welcome relief. I came across Deansgrange writers Group yesterday, located in my home city, Dublin. With all the hyperbole recently – the reminded me of what self-publishing is really about, and at its very best.
Deansgrange Writers comprises of just over a dozen writers, and like many writers’ workshops, as far back as 2006, they wanted to see the best of their work in print. As with all writers’ workshops, some want to be  the next James Patterson, others are happy just to continue to put pen to paper and be encouraged to do so. That is the passion we sometimes all forget – so removed from want goes on here on this site and the publishing world in general.
A few of Deansgrange Writers have experienced some moderate publishing success, but the real passion and fulfillment will come next Tuesday, 8th December, when their workshop anthology will be published to the world.

“By 2008 the group had a membership of about 12 with maybe 5 of its original 9 members still involved. The arrival of new members brought further vibrancy to the group and we achieved a new impetus towards publishing our first anthology, entitled Crossroads.

In 2009 we began a production schedule, resulting in the publication of Crossroads, edited by local poet and former DLR Writer-in-residence, Katie Donovan.

Crossroads is a celebration of the group’s work to date and a snapshot of our current writing. All proceeds from sales of CROSSROADS will be donated to the National Rehabilitation Hospital.”

Katie Donovan has worked with the group for some time to edit, craft and see the final book through to publication. When you embed yourself with a group of writers – you not only become involved with them, but also the result of what becomes them.
You can thumb the dictionary for self-publishing and come up with all the labels, arguments and definitions of it. There’s no ego here. This is what is is all about.
And here is a role call of the Deansgrange Writers:

Tom Barrett
Declan Houton
Fergus Kelly
Lucille McDonald
Padhraig Nolan
Annie O’Curry
John Piggott
Catherine Paradise
Barbey Power
Caitriona Stewart Short

According to resident Deansgrange writer and blogger, Padhraig Nolan on his blog, The Scaldervillage Voice:

“We’ll be launching this immaculate anthology at Bakers Corner, Kill Avenue, Dun Laoghaire, from 7.30pm, Tuesday, December 8th. Why not join us for a bit of pre-budget shenanigans? You’re all welcome.

Guest speaker on the night will be novelist Julie Parsons, herself an excellent example of how the whole Writers Group thing supports those aiming to develop their writing. I haven’t heard Julie speak before, but she comes highly recommended. After that, some of our group will read a selection of work from the book. There will be wine. Possibly even Porter. A good time will be had, and the book will be on sale – there may even be Special Offers 😉

It’s worth noting that all proceeds from the book will be donated to the National Rehabilitation Hospital. Our group has a long history with the NRH; one member is an ex-patient, and the group has facilitated writing workshops there in the past.”

Tonight ‘P’ is not for publishing, it’s for passion.

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