Kevin Barry (author)
Kevin Barry (born 1969) is an Irish writer. He is the author of two collections of short stories, and the novel City of Bohane, which was the winner of the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His 2015 novel Beatlebone won the 2015 Goldsmiths Prize.
Born in Limerick, Barry spent much of his youth travelling, living in 17 addresses by the time he was 36. He lived variously in Cork, Santa Barbara, Barcelona, and Liverpool before settling in Sligo, purchasing and renovating a run-down Royal Irish Constabulary barracks. His decision to settle down was driven primarily by the increasing difficulty in moving large quantities of books from house to house. In Cork Barry worked as a freelance journalist, contributing a regular column to the Irish Examiner. Keen to become a writer, he purchased a caravan and parked it in a field in West Cork, spending the next six months writing what he described as a "terrible novel'.
Barry has described himself as "a raving egomaniac", one of those "monstrous creatures who are composed 99 per cent of sheer, unadulterated ego" and "hugely insecure and desperate to be loved and I want my reader to adore me, to a disturbing, stalkerish degree." He is highly ambitious, saying: "I won't be happy until I'm up there, receiving the Nobel Prize." He confessed to "haunting bookshops and hiding" to "spy on the short fiction section and see if anyone's tempted by my sweet bait" and has also placed copies of his own work in front of books by other "upcoming" authors.
In 2007 he won the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature for his short story collection There are Little Kingdoms. In 2011 he released his debut novel City of Bohane, which was followed in 2012 by the short story collection Dark Lies the Island. Barry won the International Dublin Literary Award for his novel City of Bohane in 2013. When City of Bohane was shortlisted for the award in April 2013, Barry said: "Anything that keeps a book in the spotlight, and keeps people talking about books is good. [...] And a prize with money attached to it has a lot of prestige." He received €100,000 for winning the award. The prize jury included Salim Bachi, Krista Kaer, Patrick McCabe, Kamila Shamsee, Clive Sinclair and Eugene R. Sullivan. Lord Mayor of Dublin Naoise Ó Muirí said he was "thrilled" that someone of "such immense talent [should] take home this year's award". Ó Muirí also said the characters were "flamboyant and malevolent, speaking in a vernacular like no other." In November, 2015 Beatlebone won the £10,000 Goldsmith’s Prize that aims to reward British and Irish fiction that breaks the mould or extends the possibilities of the novel form.
List of works
- Short story collections
- There are Little Kingdoms (2007)
- Dark Lies the Island (2012)
- City of Bohane (2011)
- Beatlebone (2015)
Awards and honours
- 2007: Rooney Prize for Irish Literature (There are Little Kingdoms)
- 2011: Costa Book Award, shortlist (City of Bohane)
- 2012: The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award (Beer Trip to Llandudno)
- 2012: Authors' Club First Novel Award (City of Bohane)
- 2013: International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award (City of Bohane)
- 2013: Edge Hill University Short Story Prize (Dark Lies the Island)
- 2015: Goldsmiths Prize (Beatlebone)
- Barry, Kevin (10 September 2011). "Once upon a life: Kevin Barry". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 April 2011.
- Mackin, Laurence (10 September 2011). "True characters: Kevin Barry, author". The Irish Times. Irish Times Trust. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- "Interview with Kevin Barry". The Short Review.
- "Leader Interview..with Kevin Barry". Limerick Leader. 1 November 2007. Retrieved 1 November 2007.
- "Author Kevin Barry is awarded the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature 2007". Trinity College Dublin. 1 October 2007. Retrieved 19 August 2009.
- Thomas, Scarlett (14 May 2011). "City of Bohane review". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 14 May 2011.
- "Kevin Barry wins IMPAC Dublin literary award for City of Bohane". RTÉ. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
- Boland, Rosita (9 April 2013). "Kevin Barry shortlisted for the International Impac Dublin Literary Award: Limerick-born man the only Irish writer to make the shortlist, for his novel 'City of Bohane'". The Irish Times. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
- Lavery, Michael (31 May 2013). "Barry in line to win €100k city book prize". Evening Herald. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
- Spain, John (6 June 2013). "In the money: Irish writer Kevin Barry scoops €100,000 IMPAC literary award". Irish Independent. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
- "Kevin Barry wint IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2013". NRC. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
- "Kevin Barry's City of Bohane wins the prestigious IMPAC DUBLIN Literary Award". Journal.ie. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
- "Irish author Kevin Barry wins Impac literary award". BBC News. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
- Gatti, Tom (11 November 2015) Kevin Barry wins the Goldsmiths Prize 2015 for his novel Beatlebone New Statesman
- Farmer, Laura (2 June 2013). "Search no longer for stories about quests, author Kevin Barry has you covered". The Gazette. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award winner announcement Beer Trip to Llandudno".
- Flood, Alison (30 March 2012). "Kevin Barry's tale of ale enthusiasts wins Sunday Times short story award". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
- Richard Lea (7 June 2013). "Kevin Barry wins Impac award". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 June 2013.
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