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The Edna O’Brien Young Writers Award FAQs

The Edna O’Brien Young Writers Award FAQs

Who can apply?

Young people aged between 15 and 17 years old. We are not looking for experienced writers, we are looking for writers with a passion for words and stories. The Edna O’Brien Young Writers Award welcomes applications from young writers from all over Ireland and encourages applications from a diversity of ethnic and/or cultural groups including, but not limited to, Asian, Black, Traveller and minority ethnic, refugees, people with disabilities, working-class and LGBTQI+.

When is it happening?

The week-long writing retreat is from 8th – 12th July, 2024.

When is the closing date to apply for the Award?

Tuesday 5th March, 2024, at 10 pm.

When will I find out if I received a place on the Award?

Thursday 9th May, 2024. We will contact all applicants via email. Do check your inbox and spam folder on this date. The judge’s decisions are final. Due to the large volume of applications, we do not offer feedback.

How many people can win the Award?

There are 15 places awarded to teenage writers for the week-long writing retreat.

Where will the workshops take place?

The Monday of the retreat week will take place online. Tues – Fri workshops will take place in person at the museum in Dublin.

Are the young writers supervised at all times during their stay?

Yes, they are supervised during their stay by MoLI staff and UCDALL Access Leaders. All staff are Garda Vetted. All programming, events and practices are delivered in line with our Child Protection Policy. We also have a Digital Safeguarding Statement that you can check out here.

Where will young people and supervisors stay for the week?

Young people and supervising staff stay in UCD Residences on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (9/10/11 July, 2024)

When will the week finish?

On Friday the 12th of July, there is a closing celebration event from 12.30 pm – 2 pm in MoLI. The week finishes after the event at 2 pm.

How will the young writers get to and home from the museum?

When granted the Award, we will pay/reimburse travel costs to and from Dublin (within the island of Ireland).

Are all meals provided?

Yes. Once a young writer is offered a place on the Award, we will cater, as best we can, to their dietary needs.. 

Should young writers bring money with them? 

We will cover the cost of travel and meals as part of the Award. If students would like to bring some spending money for other/extra costs, they can do so.

Was this Young Writers Award called another name in previous years?

Yes! The Edna O’Brien Young Writers Award was previously called the Edna O’Brien Young Writers Bursary. Just a change of wording – the programme remains the same. 

Can previous Award winners apply again?

No. Previous Award winners will not be awarded a place on the week-long creative writing retreat. If you were shortlisted and received a place on the creative writing day-long masterclass in 2020, 2021, 2022, or 2023, you can apply for a place on the week-long Award this year if you are still within the age range.

What is the creative writing day-long masterclass and who is it for?

As a runner-up prize, young writers shortlisted are offered a place in a day-long creative writing masterclass in MoLI on Sat 6th July, 11 am to 4 pm. This is free to attend, supplies and refreshments are provided. Participants must make their own way to and from the museum.

Who is on the judging panel?

The judging panel comprises representatives from UCD, MoLI and the National Library of Ireland.

Will the Award be happening again next year?

Through a generous donation, the Award will be happening every year at MoLI.

If I have any more questions, can I contact someone about my queries?

Yes, contact [email protected].

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