Edited by Liam Harte
Something About Home is a unique anthology that provides an invigorating array of creative responses to the experience of living with, and between, two worlds. Editor Liam Harte has judiciously assembled over 60 original works of poetry, fiction and non-fiction by writers of all ages, from across Ireland and Britain, who offer richly varied perspectives on what it feels like to move from one country to another – and sometimes back again. Full of absorbing subject matter, this searching collection of poetry and prose introduces readers to strong, individual voices whose work is specific in its reference but universal in its resonance.
Something About Home has its origins in a series of ‘Writing Migration’ workshops held in Castlebar, Belfast and Manchester in 2015, which fired the imaginations of new and experienced writers alike. The arrangement of the book’s contents into three sections reflects these origins, while also inviting readers to trace common themes and preoccupations across the collection as a whole. The editor’s wide-ranging general introduction is complemented by section introductions by three of Ireland’s leading writers – novelist Mike McCormack and poets Moyra Donaldson and John McAuliffe – each of whom led their own creative writing workshop series over a six-week period.
Most of the contributors to this collection have direct, first-hand experience of living in another country, in some cases for most of their lives. None has remained untouched by the effects of emigration, even those who have never, or not yet, left home.
What makes Something About Home so compelling is that it showcases exciting new material by award-winning writers alongside vibrant and eclectic work by fresh literary talents. Most of these emergent voices are female and for many this is their first foray into print. While each author strikes a distinctive note, readers will find pleasurable echoes between individual works and eavesdrop on intriguing cross-talk between writers.
Eschewing cliché and keeping sentimentality in check, the poetry and prose in this volume take us beyond stereotypes into recognisable realities and unexpected horizons. By turns lyrical and acerbic, rueful and compassionate, Something About Home will captivate readers and open their minds to new writing that is relevant, revelatory and thoroughly accomplished.