Vincent McDonnell

Life
1951- ; b. Mayo; novelist andteacher creative writing; author of The Broken Commandment (1989), which won a special “compensation” prize when the GPA First Fiction Award went to John Banville as the committee’s first choice in a blameless fraças involving Graham Greene, acting as adjudicator; winner of Ireland’s Own Short Story Award; London Broadcasting (LBC) Award, Write to Write Short Story Award; and Francis MacManus Award with “Lemon Cream”, 2004; issued childrens’ novels, The Boy Who Saved Christmas (1992), The Knock Airport Mystery (1993) , and Children of Stone (q.d.) ; also Imagination of the Heart (Brandon 1995), a novel dealing with sex abuse and murder in the West of Ireland; appt. writer-in-residence at Limerick University; issued Out of the Flames (O'Brien 2002), about a young African refugee in Ireland; shortlisted for Reading Association of Ireland Award, 2003, and trans. into German; issued Race Against Time (Collins 2004); another children's book, resulting in the simultaneous republication by Collins of his earlier children's novels, 2005- ; lives at Carrigaline, Co. Cork; conducts writing class; m. Joan (A Spring in My Step, 2004).

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Works
The Boy Who Saved Christmas (Dublin: Poolbeg 1992), 142pp.), and Do. [rep.] (Cork: Collins Press 2004), 156pp.; The Knock Airport Mystery (Dublin: Poolbeg Press 1993), 153pp., ande Do. [rep.] (Cork: Collins Press 2005), 203pp.; The Broken Commandment (London: NY: Roberts Reinhardt 1988), 254pp., and Do. [rep.] (London: Penguin 1990), 254pp.; Imagination of the Heart (Dingle: Brandon 1995), 245pp.; Can Timmy Save Toyland? (Nenagh: Relay Books 1996),138pp., and Do. [rep.] (Cork: Collins Press 2005), 185pp.; Out of the Flames (Dublin: O'Brien Press 2002), 240pp.; Chill Factor (Dublin: O'Brien Press 2004), 221pp.; Race Against Time (Cork: Collins Press 2004), 73pp.

See also ‘Out of the West [Vincent McDonnell on the book that changed his life]’, in The Irish Times Magazine, “Finishing Lines” [column] (17 Aug. 2002), p.66. [duly considers Grapes of Wrath, Heart of the Matter, Ulysses, et al., but settles on The Rustlers of West Fork by Louis L'Amour].

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Criticism
[Shirley Kelly], ‘Life after the GPA’, [interview article] in Books Ireland (Oct. 1995), pp.241-42, and see ‘First Flush’ notice of Imagination of the Heart, in Books Ireland (Sept. 1995) [deals with ‘perverted longings, naked evil’]; John Dunne, review of Imagination of the Heart (1995), in Books Ireland (Dec. 1995), p.325-26 [dismissive]; Shirley Kelly, ‘Off on the Wrong Foot’, [interview article] in Books Ireland (Dec. 2005), p.283.

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References
Steve MacDonogh
, ed., Irish Short Stories (Dingle: Mounteagle Press 1998), selects ‘The Milking Bucket’.

Whispers & Shouts, 2 (2004), contains his Francis MacManus prize-winning story, “Lemon Cream”, with bio-note: Gives readings and creative writing workshops all over Ireland, for adults, teenagers and children. Has won numerous prizes including GPA award, and published stories widely; num. short stories and novels incl. The Broken Commandment; Imagination of The Heart, and for children, The Boy Who Saved Christmas.

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