Announcement of the Longlist for the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing 2016

Each year our Poetry in Motion Community project publishes an anthology of poetry by writers from across Northern Ireland.

Last year this was further enhanced by the presentation of a new award for writers, endorsed by the Heaney Family.

In March 2015 we announced the inaugural winner of the Award. Stephanie Conn’s poem ‘Lavender Fields’ claimed the title.

Stephanie is about to launch her first collection ‘The Woman on the Other Side’ on Friday 11th March with Doire Press at the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast.

In the autumn of 2015 we put out a call for submissions on the theme of connections. The response was overwhelming. We received more than four hundred submissions.

These were all processed, names removed and forwarded to our selection panel of poets, Paul Maddern and Paula Cunningham, to make the selection of the anthology.

Of those hundreds of submissions, seventy-two were selected for publication. Of those seventy-two poems, twenty-one were selected by both poets to form our longlist.

  • Anne Baker – Topography
  • Christine Leckey – Something Like Love
  • Christine Leckey – Swim
  • Colin Dardis – Missed Flight
  • Ev McLoughlin – Homely
  • Glen Wilson – Fixing the Power Lines
  • John Caulfield – A Cold silence
  • John Thompson – Encounter
  • Laura Cameron – There are no short people in our family
  • Marilyn McLaughlin – Fisherman
  • Martin Rolston – That Woman Who Calls Me luv
  • Matthew Rice – Lost
  • Miranda Stinson – Sorcha
  • Miranda Stinson – Trench Cello
  • Norman Lowry – Exposed
  • Patricia Devlin-Hill – Tea
  • Sharon Flynn – Global Village
  • Stephanie Conn – Searching
  • Stephanie Conn – Blow In
  • Sue Morgan – Tapioca is Not Nostalgia
  • Teresa Kane – Shadow Seed

Those selected as the strongest poems by our two poets were then shortlisted. The shortlist will be announced on Friday 11th March.

The shortlisted poems were subsequently presented to a wider panel including poets Moyra Donaldson and Deirdre Cartmill and the CEO of Community Arts Partnership, Conor Shields.

Together with Paul Maddern, this panel nominated the winning poem of the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing. This year’s winning poem will be announced at the anthology launch on Sunday 13th March at the Duncairn Centre for Culture and Arts.

If you would like to attend the launch, please email

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