Angela Carr interviews Afric McGlinchey ahead of her Double Shot appearance.

The DOUBLE SHOT series of poetry readings returns this Autumn, with readings planned for September, October & November 2015, at our usual venue of BOOKS UPSTAIRS on D’Olier Street, Dublin 2.

The first event, presented in conjunction with the long-running Cork-based Ó BHÉAL, features Cork poets, Gerry Murphy and Afric McGlinchey, along with Dublin-based emerging poet, Erin Fornoff.

It takes place on Wednesday, 16 September from 6.30pm, entry €6 — book September tickets online now at Eventbrite

Afric McGlinchey 15

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Interview by Angela Carr of Double Shot

​West Cork poet, Afric McGlinchey is one of the featured readers at Double Shot Meets Ó Bhéal, the first of our Autumn readings on Weds 16 September at Books Upstairs. We had a quick chat recently about poetry, the importance of live readings and some damn fine books.

Tell us a bit about your latest publication or a current project you’re working on / just finished.

I’m currently working on my second collection, due out from Salmon in 2016. Although a number of the poems take place in Paris, they also cross between worlds, and between physical and spiritual impulses, as well as certain strangenesses in the skin of weather, and in our own skin. Also, cats figure quite largely!

What’s your writing routine like? What brings you to the page?

I’m very easily distracted, and wish I DID have a strict routine. I’d get so much more done! I come to the page usually around 4 or 5 in the morning – I’m an insomniac – when the dream state is still dominant. Or it might be after chatting to someone, or listening to the radio, and suddenly I hear, or say something myself, and think: ‘that’s a good line’ and rush to write it down. Sometimes the poem comes there and then. Sometimes the idea has to develop for a while first. I spend my time editing manuscripts or reading and reviewing books, so I’m pretty much always at my desk during the day. But I can’t write poetry at all then. I take breaks by going for a swim, taking a walk or making some tea, which I drink by the pond outside, with my notebook beside me. That’s when the ideas come.

How important are live readings to you and your work?

I love live readings, and go to as many as I can. Hearing a poet read transforms the work. Each poet brings their unique presence, or ESSENCE, to their delivery. And invariably, this is when I buy poetry books. I’ve recently had to get my partner to put up a second shelf the length of my wall just below the ceiling of my study, because all my bookshelves are full!

What’s next for you? Any interesting events / gigs / projects coming up?

It’s been a busy year so far! So I’m planning to wind things down a little. I’ll be reading at the Clonakilty Arts Centre on Culture Night. Also, I’m a member of the Hibernian Writers’ Group and we’re launching an anthology of our work at the Teachers’ Club, Parnell Square on Tuesday, 20th October. For the rest of the year, I plan to keep my head down and finish editing my collection.

What you are reading at the moment, or can you recommend a fave collection?

I’ve just finished Anne Carson’s Red Doc, which I loved, and now I’m reading Matthew Dickman’s Mayakovsky’s Revolver. Reserving judgment until I finish it. A favourite poet is Alice Oswald – now there’s someone to see and hear live! I’ve watched her on Youtube, and listened to her on Poetry Foundation. As for favourite collections – they change all the time. This month: ‘Burnfort, Las Vegas’ by Martina Evans, ‘Music Field’ by Jim Maguire and Anna Journey’s ‘If Birds Gather Your Hair For Nesting’. I’m also reading the novel, Jernigan, by David Gates.
Really hoping my eyes hold out for my lifetime! There’s so much to read!

Find Afric online at:

Website: http://www.africmcglinchey.com
Southword: http://www.munsterlit.ie/Southword/Contributors/mcglinchey_afric.html
Sabotage reviews: http://sabotagereviews.com/tag/afric-mcglinchey/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/afric.mcglinchey
Twitter: https://twitter.com/itosha

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