The Stray Sod at the Armagh Museum

It was with great delight that I accepted an invitation for Flash Fiction Armagh to have another event at the Armagh County Museum. The folks there are just so amazing to deal with and when they explained their idea for this event, I was even more excited.

Local artist, Orlaith Cullinaine has taken inspiration from museum objects to create a number of artworks for an exhibition called The Stray Sod. The title comes from local folklore and is all about being lost in a familiar place. The Museum asked if we’d like to theme our event and we said we’d give it a go.

To be honest, I was worried that the theme would mean fewer submissions but writers rose to the challenge and the submissions poured in. And such good stories!

As I read the submissions each one took me on a journey – some took me back to places and times I’d lived in before – others took me from the life I know, to live a ghost of some other life. I realized that each time I read a story, I experience a different reality from the safety of my chair and at the end of the story, I’m returned to where I am sitting and everything around me is just the same though I have changed a tiny little bit. The act of reading is a stray sod experience…

It was one of the hardest yet to curate as we have a limited places and so many great stories. It was a good lesson for me as a writer, seeing first-hand how a perfectly good story is sometimes not selected and for reasons other than the quality of the writing. Sometimes the stories are too similar, or don’t fit with the other stories and are too different. I’m hoping that all writers take the message away from this post as follows: Your story might not have been selected this time and for this event/publication, but it is not necessarily a reflection on your writing, so don’t give up on it.

Flash Fiction Armagh is delighted to announce our line-up, in no particular order:-

Sue Divin                         Rosé

Cathy Carson                   Stay

Eddie Mc Clenaghan       Push on Home

Malachi Kelly                  The Empty Dining Chair

Ellen Mc Kenna               Cast Adrift

Peter Hollywood             Little People

Jay Faulkner                     Hero Worship

Kieran Mc Gurk               Cnoc Na Mboe

Réaltán Ní Leannáin        Fóidín Mearaí/Stray Sod

Morrow Brady                 Hearth

Maire Quinn                     The Stray Sod

Lorna Flanagan                Edenvilla

Catherine Regan              The Shadow Shop 

Réamonn Ó Ciaráin         Coimhthíoch 

Tickets cost £5.

We’re excited to see so many new faces and of course, welcome back old friends. It promises to be a good Saturday Night at the Museum.

And before I sign off – just one wee plug for myself. If you’re interested in finding out about release dates for my Trilogy (to be published in 2020 by Castrum Press) please sign up to my Newsletter.