Philip Ó Ceallaigh

Irish writer

Philip Ó Ceallaigh (born March 23, 1968) is an Irish short story writer living in Bucharest.

Philip Ó Ceallaigh


Notes from a library bar (2006)Edit

Notes from a library bar, Hot Press (20 December 2006)
  • I was kind of solitary. I'd spend a lot of time on my own, reading books. I didn't integrate very well.
    • On Life, on his time at school.
  • I called the boss a ‘fucker’ one day – not to his face, but it got back to him – so that was the end.
    • On life, on his time spent as a waiter.
  • I used to write in the Rathmines public library. I was on the dole and living in a bedsit down the road. It was too cold to write at home. I had one of those meters that you had to put 50p into. So I'd go down the library every morning and after lunch to scribble stuff in longhand in the study room there.
  • I don't want to become the kind of writer who's putting out a book every two years. Money is not my primary concern. I've been broke before and I'll do it again.
  • I think if you've got something to say and you can say it with less, that's the way to go.

Interview by Tom Vowler (2010-13)Edit

Interview by Tom Vowler, Short Fiction Journal. Undated, somewhere between 2010 and 2013
  • I meet people who tell me things like, ‘I read your book in two days’. Please don’t do that. These things take me years to write. Slow down. Everything you read, slow down. Reading is our great act of resistance in this age of speed and carelessness.
  • I write to discover something, not so much to set down what I already know. I see ignorance and confusion all around me. I see these things in myself. I'm subject of all kinds of fears and conflicting desires. But one of those desires, the sanest one, is to see through the confusion.
  • The ‘novel’ is a publishing convention that deforms the story. If more attention were given to form there would be fewer novels and better stories. There's no reason a publisher can’t put out a story that's a hundred or even seventy pages long. But a publisher will look at a story like that as defective novel, ineligible for shortlists. It should be in a collection. Or pumped full of air, turned into a novel… It's a pity. You see some good writers behaving like performing monkeys.
  • The real writers are tenacious creatures, and they found a way long before there were writers workshops and creative writing courses in the universities. In the absence of formal frameworks, personal initiatives and informal frameworks become more important.

External linksEdit

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