Upcoming Literary Events

Literary Events Archive

The Dogs of Avalon • Laura Schenone, Dec 3

The hero of The Dogs of Avalon: The Race to Save Animals in Peril is Marion Fitzgibbon. After a decade of marriage and life in Dublin, the Fitzgibbon family returns to their native Limerick where, driving through the city center, Marion notices dozens of homeless, starving, and sick dogs curled into every other doorway and alley. Devastated, she decides to take action and joins forces with likeminded women to form Limerick Animal Welfare, beginning a lifelong career of rescuing and advocating for animals. Marion’s family phone becomes a hurt-animal hotline. Soon she is rescuing everything from swans to abused circus tigers.

But after becoming director of the Irish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, she can no longer ignore the plight of greyhounds—mass produced and exported by a government-backed industry. Thousands seem to disappear after injury or peak racing years. Marion’s quest takes her across Europe and to the U.S. where she finds assistance from people determined to change the perception of the misunderstood breed (often thought dangerous and not suitable as pets) and save the majestic dogs.

The Dogs of Avalon is a captivating story, and a multi-faceted narrative, illustrating the clash of rural and urban values, and the ripple effect of difficult economic times on humans and animals alike. Part memoir, part history lesson on greyhounds, Schenone sheds new light on a neglected breed and entertains with tales of prancing dogs, undercover infiltration of Spanish racetracks, and a band of women who are part of a growing worldwide movement to change the way we understand and care for animals.

Book Passage, Corte Madera



Irish Writers’ Festival, Los Gatos • October 5-8, 2017

The Los Gatos Irish Writers’ Festival, October 5th-8th, is a four-day festival featuring Irish writers, artists, and musicians. Full program here


Volunteers neededemail for information.


Eanlaí Cronin Workshops


Alameda-based Irish writer Eanlaí Cronin’s workshops are based on the Amherst Writers and Artists Method, which believes that every person is a writer, and every writer deserves a safe environment in which to experiment, learn, and develop craft. Each workshop drops writers easily and instantly into the core content asking to be written through them, whether it is poetry, fiction, memoir or journal and process writing. Participants write to carefully prepared prompts designed to prime the creative pump, read their work aloud (though not required), and give and receive positive feedback using a simple and skillful AWA format. Open to writers of all ability levels.

Workshops start every few months so email Eanlai at eanlaicronin@gmail.com for more information or to register for the nest session.

No previous writing experience is required. Just book your place in advance and take the Amherst Writers and Artists Method for a test drive.

“The time spent in Eanlai’s writing workshop has been a profound healing experience for me. Eanlai creates a space for creativity with the freedom to express yourself without inhibition.  The healing is not just from my own writing, but from hearing the words and wisdom of the other writers in the group.  It is mystical.” – Sharon Kuhn, Fremont, CA


Kevin Starr • 1940 – 2017

State historian Kevin Starr told many stories in his day – in a dozen books, as California state librarian emeritus, and as former professor at the University of Southern California. Among the tales of which he was most proud was his ancestry, as a fourth-generation San Franciscan who traces his roots to Ireland’s County Roscommon with the emigration of a grandfather in the 1850s. See full NYT obit

Tom Hayden • 1939 – 2016

Tom Hayden, who passed away October 23, 2016, was an iconic figure in America’s anti-war movement and a campaigner over many years for peace and justice in Northern Ireland. He led an extraordinary life of organizing, writing, and political reform. He put himself on the line during Mississippi Summer in 1964, was a principal opponent of the Vietnam War, a defendant in the Chicago Seven trial, and served nearly 20 years in the California legislature. He was the principal author in 1962 of the founding manifesto of Students for a Democratic Society. wiki

Eddie Stack • 1950-2016


Eddie Stack, admired writer, talented musician, beloved teacher at The Program in Celtic Studies at UC-Berkeley, and a friend to many, left us on July 4, 2016. Eddie was co-founder of the Celtic Festival that provided a vital cultural link for thousands of young Irish emigrants in the 1990s.

The Co. Clare native, trained as a civil engineer but is better known for his writing and for his work on documenting and promoting Irish culture and heritage. See full Irish Times obituary

Renee Gibbons • 1945-2015


Born in a Dublin tenement, she escaped to Paris when she was seventeen where she fell in with actors, writers and musicians. Restless and full of dreams she spent years working her way around the world. On a ship bound for Egypt with her year-old daughter Aisling she met and fell in love with a longshoreman from San Francisco, the city where she spent the rest of her life. Her memoir, ‘Longing for Elsewhere‘, explores the themes entangled in her journey: identity, adventure, creativity, the burden of history and the passion for justice.

Writer, singer and actress Renée Gibbons passed away December 20th, 2015 after a long battle with cancer. See obit here