Once again the dynamic group of women writers, Women Aloud Northern Ireland have demonstrated their vitality and commitment by using the global lockdown to fuel a powerhouse of literary creativity.
The writers of WANI are publishing North Star – an Anthology of Literature by Northern Irish Women.
I’m delighted to have 2 poems in the book.
Not content with merely print, they are also staging an online literary festival, bringing their sparkling storytelling to audiences they would usually be entertaining through workshops, readings and other events, were it not for the worldwide restrictions on their movements.
The Facebook Live Weekend Festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday, April 25 and 26th, using the social media platform’s live facility to bring a diverse programme of fiction, prose and poetry to audiences in their homes with members reading live at 11am, 3pm and 8.30pm on both days.
WANI member, Vicky McFarland says the festival is a way of giving voice to the creativity simmering behind the scenes: “The festival gives us the chance to celebrate ourselves, to give our community something to look forward to, and to fulfil some of our goals by raising the profile of women writers living in, and from, Northern Ireland. It also gives us a chance to enjoy some great writing.”
North Star – An Anthology of Literature by Northern Irish Women was conceived by WANI chair, Angeline King, who suggested members turn their quarantine time into a collective creative effort with a marketable product at the end.
Angeline, author of Snugville Street, explains:
“North Star is all about being creative, keeping the mind busy, encouraging friendships forged through Women Aloud NI, and continuing the energetic collaborative spirit upon which WANI was founded in 2016, and which otherwise has been curtailed by the pandemic.
“North Star has been born out of the wish to portray writers’ homeplaces – our villages, towns, counties, or wherever we have found ourselves firmly rooted at the moment. It is a theme many of our members often depict in their writing, so we already had a deep vault of material to mine.”
North Star will be published by Leschenault Press and be available online through a print-on-demand service, and through Gardners Books from June 2020.
Women Aloud NI ,a collective of women writers from across Northern Ireland, founded in 2016, aims to support, promote and raise the profile of women writers across Northern Ireland. I previously profiled WANI in Raising the Profile of Women Writers , Wales Arts Review.
Some of the writers featuring in the collection are available for comment by contacting Lesley Walsh 07813 200643.