Three writers awarded Kylemore Residency through exciting new partnership

Author: Irish Writers Centre

kylemore wrAwardees, 2024: Kieran FitzGerald, Henrietta McKervey and Rose Ugoalah

The Irish Writers Centre is delighted to announce that three writers will be awarded a residency opportunity to pursue their work on the beautiful grounds of Kylemore Abbey (Co. Galway) this April. Kieran Fitzgerald, Henrietta McKervey, and Rose Ugoalah have been awarded the Kylemore Residency, in partnership with the Kylemore Global Centre. Rose Ugoalah speaks of this honor saying, “I’m delighted to be awarded this unique opportunity at such a dream location. I already know this will be a special experience.”

The partnership between the Irish Writers Centre and Notre Dame Kylemore, under the auspices of the University of Notre Dame, marks an exciting new collaboration. The residency provides an opportunity for writers to develop their projects from one of Galway’s most distinctive locations and will take place over five days from April 15-19. Writers also have access to the Kylemore Estate, the Victorian Walled Gardens, the neo-Gothic Church, and the museum.

The residency provides intentional time and space for writers, at different stages of their careers, to develop a creative project while soaking up the peaceful atmosphere of Kylemore Abbey.

Kieran Fitzgerald mentions, “Receiving the email gave me a jolt of excitement and a little thrill of fear. As well as the wonderful gift of spending a week in beautiful Kylemore Abbey, it also throws down a challenge. The challenge is to focus fully on developing an idea that I’ve been nurturing for some time.”

“Time is one of the most precious things to a writer and the opportunity of a dedicated week such as this to work on a new book is both exciting and appreciated,” adds Henrietta McKervey.

Read more about the awardees

Kieran FitzGerald lives in Dún Laoghaire and has worked as a radio producer and television reporter for many years. He served two terms as a member of the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission. Arising from an accident, Kieran has been wheelchair-bound since 2016. He will develop a story “inspired by real-life people who lived extraordinary lives in America and later in Victorian England.”

Henrietta McKervey has published four acclaimed novels. She has a Hennessy First Fiction Award and has also won the inaugural UCD Maeve Binchy Travel Award. She is a mentor on the IWC National Mentoring Programme, curates the ECHOES festival, and contributes to the Irish Times, Irish Independent, and the Brendan O’Connor show. Henrietta will spend the residency working on her new book.

Rose Ugoalah is a Nigerian Canadian writer living in Dublin, and graduate of Trinity College Dublin’s Creative Writing M.Phil. She was awarded the inaugural Briena Staunton Westport Writer’s Residency, and a recipient of Irish Arts Council funding for literature. Ugoalah will be spending the residency completing her debut novel, Rot, which, in her own words is about “a solitary man who, following his brother’s suicide, becomes increasingly unhinged as he tries to conceal a life of private desire that may destroy him.”

For information requests and interview enquiries please contact Jo Morton, Communications and Marketing Officer, Irish Writers Centre at or +353 1 872 1302.

About Notre Dame Kylemore

In 2015, the University of Notre Dame and the Benedictine Community at Kylemore Abbey formed a partnership which would further their shared spiritual, cultural, and educational missions. Today, Notre Dame Kylemore is a centre for education and growth where the Notre Dame family and the wider Irish community engage in meaningful and authentic ways. Together with our local partners, Notre Dame Kylemore strives to provide multi-disciplinary programming for leaders, thinkers, and creators with a focus on nourishing the mind, body, and spirit. In December 2024, this location will host a new programme for writers, the Winter Writing Session. Applications open on April 1st, 2024.

About the Irish Writers Centre

As the leading support and development organisation for writers since 1991, the Irish Writers Centre (IWC) carries out its work, online and in person, on an all-island basis. The IWC works with writers of all types and talents, and actively encourages writers from all communities to engage in creative writing. It provides many ways and means for them to develop their skill, advance their ambitions and join a vibrant and diverse community of people who share their passion and purpose. The IWC supports writers be providing development and mentoring programmes, resources, creative writing courses and events & information sessions. The Irish Writers Centre is supported by the Arts Council of Ireland.