This April Doire Press are delighted to be launching Island, the new poetry collection by award-winning Ballyclare-poet Stephanie Conn.
Damian Smyth, Head of Literature and Drama at Arts Council of Northern Ireland, will be launching the collection.
Island takes its inspiration from the poet’s ancestors, who lived their lives, farming and fishing on Copeland Island off the County Down coast.
It was a hard, demanding life often defined by the weather and the sea. These are poems of place but also of people and of human reaction and interaction. The work moves beyond the confines of this one small island; Ischia, Rough Island, Skellig Michael all feature, to a vivid present and towards a future informed by a discovered history. This is a book of island dwellers; those longing to escape or hoping to belong, those in search of answers or solitude, those who want to hide the truth and those who want to uncover it.
Stephanie Conn, from County Antrim, is a graduate of the Creative Writing M.A. Programme at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University Belfast. She is the winner of the 2015 Funeral Services NI Poetry Prize, the 2015 Yeovil Poetry Prize, the inaugural Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing and the 2016 Poetry Business Pamphlet Competition, which culminated in the publication of Copeland’s Daughter. Stephanie has also been shortlisted for many awards, including the 2012 Patrick Kavanagh Award and is the recipient of an ACES award. Her debut collection, The Woman from the Other Side, which we published in 2016, was shortlisted for the 2016 Shine/Strong Award.