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Anne Walsh Donnelly Linenhall

Official launch of He Used To Be Me by Anne Walsh Donnelly

published by New Island Books

Saturday, 2 March 2024

Free Booking is Essential

Official launch of He Used To Be Me by Anne Walsh Donnelly, published by New Island Books.

Launched by Orlagh Heverin, with special guest Mariel Deegan from the book’s publisher, New Island Books.

He Used To Be Me
tells the story of Matt, a Mayo man who wanders the streets of Castlebar in search of ‘Devil’s feet’ – the claw marks of the cága (jackdaws) who have spoken to him since he was a boy. In extraordinary prose, Anne Walsh Donnelly imagines Matt’s inner life, from the loss of his twin brother as a child, through the care-free days of early manhood, to the aftermath of a horse-riding accident that would leave him in care for another 30 years.

Anne Walsh Donnelly
lives in Castlebar and writes prose, poetry and plays. Her published poetry collections include Odd as F*ck, (Fly on the Wall Poetry Press, 2021) and The Woman With An Owl Tattoo (Fly on the Wall Poetry Press, 2019). Poetry Ireland in conjunction with Mayo Arts Office appointed her as Poet Laureate for the town of Belmullet in Co Mayo in 2021. Her play, My Dead Husband’s Hereford Bull, was performed in the Linenhall in 2022.

He Used to Be Me is an exquisite piece of art. The writing is crisp and poetic. It's a story of heartache and magic, and the inner workings of a mind on the edge. This is a man who is so original and yet recognisable, the person who rarely makes it into literature, yet lives on the fringes of many communities. An intense burst of a life that will carry you not just along but within it.
Alice Kinsella, Author of Milk, on Motherhood and Madness