Supported by Waterford City and County Arts Office, our not for profit educational and process-based workshops and retreats are facilitated by highly accomplished, serious writers, poets, editors and authors focused on the nature of the creative process and the writing craft, supporting beginning and emerging writers to bring their writing to the high level needed for publication and professional readings. As well as working with professional writers on their creative process at every stage.  With writer in residence, Lani O' Hanlon, past facilitators include, Louis de Paor, Thomas McCarthy, Grace Wells, Nuala O' Connor, Mark Roper, Gerard Smyth, Paula Meehan and Don Share. 


‘The Arts Office, Waterford City & Co. Council will be offering bursaries for Time to Write 2020. Details on the application process will be posted here in May 2020’.

Please be advised of the rescheduling due to Covid-19 of Thomas McCarthy's workshop. The course will now run over the weekend of September 5th and 6th. There will not be a session in May. 

As a result Alison Driscoll's workshop has been postponed to October 24th to facilitate this change of scheduling. 


With Thomas McCarthy


5th and 6th September 

2020 This year, the first year of what will hopefully be a decade of unstoppable creativity for all of us – this year, we will concentrate on making one essential, achieved poem at a time. Full of the drive and momentum of a new decade in our own writing lives, we’ll delve deeply into that essential poem we can really make if we really make the effort. The TEXT will be everything at our two workshops – Spring and Autumn – in 2020: your TEXT, what you have written down, LINE BY LINE. This year we will dedicate ourselves to close and deep reading of each other’s poems; we will search for line-by-line meanings, for clarity and story. What does your poem tell us, how have you manipulated language to communicate your narrative, your insight, fully and sharply? This year, 2020 at Molly Keane House we’ll build a deliberate and considered picture of ourselves poem by poem, line by line. Bring at least three poems to the first workshop.

Saturday 5th September and Sunday 6th September 2020. 9 am for 9.30 start.Payment 10 Lyrics€286 - deposit 100 Please pay deposit and/or full fee by 30th of May 2020

Enquiries and Request for Booking Form mollykeanewritersretreats@gmail.com


Thomas McCarthy was born in Cappoquin, Co. Waterford in 1954 and educated locally and at University College Cork where he was Auditor of the English Literature Society. He has published many collections of poetry, including The First Convention, The Sorrow Garden, Lost Province, Merchant Prince and The Last Geraldine Officer. He has also published two novels, Without Power and Asya and Christine as well as two works of non-fiction, Gardens of Remembrance and Out of the Ashes. His Pandemonium was published by Carcanet Press in 2016 and was short-listed for the Irish Times/Poetry Now Award. He is a member of Aosdána, the Irish Assembly of artists and writers. He has won the Patrick Kavanagh Award, the Alice Hunt Bartlett Prize and the O’Shaughnessy Prize for Poetry as well as the Ireland Funds Annual Literary Award. He worked as estate gardener for a grandson of the Duke of Leinster while he was in secondary school and college. After graduation he joined the staff of Cork City Libraries where he remained for more than three decades. A member of the International Writing Programme at the University of Iowa in 1978/79, he was also International Professor of English at Macalester College, Minnesota in 1994/95. He is a former Editor of Poetry Ireland Review and The Cork Review. An enthusiastic mentor of new poets, he has conducted workshops at Listowel Writers’ Week, Munster Literature Centre, Molly Keane House, Arvon Foundation (Lumb Bank), Portlaoise Prison (Provisional IRA Wing), Macalester College and Carlow University (Pittsburgh).. His poetry has been translated into Russian, Italian, Chinese, French and many other languages. His work appears in more than thirty anthologies of Irish poetry, most notably Penguin Book of Contemporary Irish Poetry, Contemporary Irish Poetry (California University Press), An Anthology of Irish Poetry ( Harvard University Press) and The Wake Forest Series of Irish Poetry: Volume II (Wake Forest University Press). 

An Evening Reading with Carlo Gébler and a Morning Workshop June 6th-7th

On Sat 6 June (8.00) Carlo Gébler will read from his two most recent publications, Aesop’s Fables, the Cruelty of the Gods and Folk Tales of Fermanagh. Both of these books are new and radical versions of material which already exists. As well as reading from these books Carlo Gébler will talk about the process of re-working, re-using and re-purposing found literary material. On Sunday 7 June 2020 Carlo Gébler will conduct a workshop devoted to solving your problems - literary, financial, marital or any other kind of problem you have. Just roll up and have your questions ready and you can be as frank as you want. If you come with a manuscript that’s fine: you can talk about the kinks and infelicities in the manuscript in the workshop: however, Carlo Gébler cannot read your material either before, during or after the workshop.

Carlo GéblerCarlo Gébler was born in Dublin in 1954 and lives outside Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh. His most recent publications (all from New Island) include The Wing Orderly’s Tales, a collection of stories told by a prison orderly, The Projectionist, the Story of Ernest Gébler, a biography of his father, The Innocent of Falkland Road, a novel set in London in the 1960s, and Aesop’s Fables, the Cruelty of the Gods (a collaboration with the artist Gavin Weston) and (published by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council) Folk Tales of Fermanagh (a collaboration with the Irish language writer Seamas McCanny), a collection of folk tales based on material from County Fermanagh lodged in the National Folklore Commission. He is currently working on a biography of Oedipus as written by the Theban king’s daughter, Antigone. Carlo Gébler has been a prison teacher since 1991: currently he work in Hydebank College (formerly Hydebank Young Offenders’ Centre) where he helps to run ’The Saturday Club’ which is for young offenders and female prisoners, and in HMP Maghaberry where he works with prisoners serving long sentences. He also teaches at Trinity and the American College, Dublin. He is a member of Aosdana.

Booking and Enquiries mollykeanewritersretreats@gmail.com

Evening Reading €15 Workshop and Reading €75 


Author photograph by Euan Gébler

With Lani O' Hanlon TIME TO WRITE August 21st - 23rd

Whether you have a project that needs to be finished, are just starting out, or floundering somewhere in the middle, this focused three-day retreat will give you space and time to concentrate on your own writing, moving through the blocks that can hinder your progress, at any stage of the creative process. Held in the cocoon of the Molly Keane Writers Retreat, Ardmore, with its famed and historic hospitality, and by Lani O' Hanlon's subtle, grounded, intuitive, creative support, we will meet each morning for a focused writing workshop 10am to 11.30am. We will then retreat for a concentrated writing hour and a half, meeting for a light lunch at 1.30pm. In the afternoons another hour and a half of concentrated writing or you are free to explore  the beach, the garden or the cliff and dream into your project, before gathering for afternoon tea and another focused workshop. You will also avail of a one to one, forty-minute consultation.

Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd of August 2019 10.00 am to 5.30pm approx. Please start arriving at 9.30am for a 10am start

Payment -Time to Write [for 3 days] €250 - deposit €100, full payment by the 30th of May 2019 Booking Form and Enquiries mollykeanewritersretreats@gmail.com

‘The Arts Office, Waterford City & Co. Council will be offering bursaries for Time to Write 2020. Details on the application process will be posted here in May 2020’.

Lani O' Hanlon is the author of DTR holistic well-being through movement (Mercier Press), a professional dancer, movement therapist and group facilitator she works in arts and health with the Waterford Healing Arts Trust and as a creative writing facilitator with the Arts Office, Libraries and the Artist/Teacher programme. She has an MA in creative writing from Lancaster University and was awarded a travel and training bursary to complete a first novel in 2017 which was prizewinner with the Irish Writers Centre's Novel Fair. Her poetry has been published in various journals and anthologies for example, Poetry, Poetry Ireland Review, The Stinging Fly, The Irish Times, Mslexia, Southword, Orbis, Poetry Ireland Review podcast broadcast on national radio RTE's Sunday Miscellany, Halleluiah for 50ft Women, Bloodaxe, Ten Poems for Breakfast Candlestick Press, The Lea-Green Down, Fiery Arrow, The Children of the Nation, Culture Matters and Universal Oneness,An Anthology of Magnum Opus Poems from around the World . A first poetry chapbook 'The Little Theatre' was edited by Thomas McCarthy and funded by Artlinks 2018. HC for The Bridport Prize, HC Poetry on the Lake, a Hennessey New Irish Writing and William Allingham winner and with Film Director Fiona Aryan the 2019 first prize for The O'Bheal International Poetry Film. Poetry up-coming in Abridged and in the new Bloodaxe Anthology–Staying Human in Unreal Times in 2020. She is completing and revising a first collection.

Photograph by Eileen O Flynn Hyland

With our new writer in residence Alison Driscoll

Are you there Reader? It’s me, the Writer, October 24th

Ever wondered if your work is worthy of being read? Or if when it is read does anyone even care? The answer to both is yes. This workshop is aimed at people who are in the early stages of their careers and are seeking some guidance and reassurance. If you want to take your writing to the next level or move through a stumbling block. I will look at fiction and poetry and invite you to bring up to 1000 words of prose or 2 poems that you are looking for advice on. Together we will break it down and build it back up into a working piece. I hope this reignites passion and drive for you. We all need a little help sometimes with the business of writing and at times all you need is a listening ear and a constructive editing pen. Each participant will benefit from constructive feedback on their piece of writing and will have the opportunity to rewrite and represent an extract in the afternoon. This workshop for emerging writers will elevate your writing and equip you with the skills and confidence to approach your work anew. Saturday October 24th – 9.30 for 10 am 4.30 pm. €75.00 includes a light lunch and refreshments.

Alison Driscoll is an emerging writer from Cork. She has completed an MA Creative Writing in UCC. Her work has appeared online and in print such as; Quarryman, Irish Examiner, Headstuff as Poem of the Week and on Poethead. A postcard story of hers was printed and circulated by the Irish Writers Centre. She has been invited to read at the Cork International Poetry Festival and in Waterstones Cork during various events such as Culture Night. Alison played a lead role in reinvigorating the English Literature Society in UCC during her studies and worked to establish a programme of events for students interested in pursuing creative writing. She organised many workshops and events with local writers in the college. Alison sat as the Editor of the Quarryman journal and on the editorial committee for four years. Alison works as a Bookseller in Cork where she shares her love of reading and literature with the public. As well as this, Alison works with the Amergin Poetry Solstice Gathering annually in PR & Marketing. Alison has recently been appointed as the Writer in Residence in the Molly Keane House.


Booking form Molly Keane Writers Retreats

Name: ___________________________ Address: _________________________________________________ Phone No: _____________________ E-mail ______________________________

Payment— Thomas McCarthy €286 - deposit 100 Please pay deposit and/or full fee by 30th of May 2020

Payment— A Reading with Carlo Gébler €15 Payment—Reading and morning workshop with Carlo Gébler €75.00

Payment—Time to Write [for 3 days with Lani O' Hanlon] €250 - deposit €100, full payment by the 30th of May 2020

Payment—Reader are you there? This is the Writer- one day workshop with Writer in Residence Alison Driscoll €75

If possible it would save on administration if you can pay the full fee in advance, if for some reason you need to cancel and we have enough notice we will offer your place to another and you can attend another group or class at another time.

NB for our records please tick which workshop you are attending with the amount paid and email or post this booking form, address below, with the amount you have paid to mollykeanewritersretreats@gmail.com.

1. Bank transfer – or lodgement with your name and workshop written clearly - Name of bank: AIB Branch: Youghal, Co Cork Name of account: Molly Keane Writers Retreats Bank account number: 08918098 Sort Code: 934305 BIC: AIBKIE2D IBAN: IE18AIBK93430508918098

If this is not possible then by post - cheques or postal orders. Please make cheques out to Molly Keane Writers Retreats.

Let us know the payment method that you are using here and the amount paid ________________ Send Booking form and/or payment to Alison Driscoll email: mollykeanewritersretreats@gmail.com