Ray D’Arcy for Wild Words Book Festival

editorial image
Ray D’Arcy, Shane Hegarty and Niamh Sharkey will be among the guests at this year’s Wild Words Children’s Book Festival in Carrick-on-Shannon.

Ray D’Arcy, Shane Hegarty and Niamh Sharkey will be among the guests at this year’s Wild Words Children’s Book Festival in Carrick-on-Shannon.


On Saturday the 8th and Sunday 9th August, Carrick plays host to the fourth annual Wild Words Children’s Book Festival, a two-day celebration of books and writing for children and young people aged 4 to 18. From storytelling aboard the Moon River, to a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, to workshops with renowned authors and illustrators, the festival is full to the brim of activities and events for every age group. Older children will love Shane Hegarty’s Darkmouth and Matt Griffin’s creepy Cage of Roots.

Broadcaster Ray D’Arcy will chat to some first time authors on Saturday afternoon and the weekend rounds off with a crazy Monster Doodle with the first Irish Children’s Laureate, Niamh Sharkey.

One of the highlights of the weekend is a special audience with Shane Hegarty, author of the hugely popular Darkmouth. Shane was a leading journalist with the Irish Times before leaving to write full time in 2013 when Darkmouth became the sensation of the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, with record-breaking publishing deals in the UK, US, Germany, Brazil and more.

The festival has excellent workshops for all ages. Kids’ Own Publishing will help budding book builders design and make story pods - special spaces for creating stories.

Dave Rudden, author of the upcoming Knights of the Borrowed Dark will gives a fascinating insight into how authors develop their stories in a special workshop for young writers. Matt Griffin, author and illustrator, will lead a creepy workshop about goblins.

The Owl and the Pussycat with Bernadette Larkin takes 4-6 year olds on a journey through Edward Lear’s classic tale as they make their own little boats filled with all the wonderful things they choose to take on their journeys!

Another festival highlight is called Down on the Farm with Anna McQuinn, a special storytelling workshop for all young farmers.

Anna McQuinn’s Glenmore Valley series of books were published in collaboration with the Farmer’s Journal and are sure to delight all farming enthusiasts.

The festival has two very special storytelling sessions aboard Carrick on Shannon’s very own pleasure cruiser, the Moon River.

On Saturday the boat will travel up the Shannon as Niall de Burca delights 6-8 year olds with his tall tales, and on Sunday, Gráinne Clear will be treating 4-6 year olds to stories of stinking pirates, greedy fishermen and sorrowful swans. Early booking is highly recommended for these events.

This year is the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice in Wonderland so what better way to celebrate than to attend the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. Meet the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts. Taste some mysterious dishes and create some peculiar potions of your own in this magical experience.

On Saturday evening Carrick Cineplex will be screening Tim Burton’s wonderful 2010 adaptation of Alice in Wonderland.

Some months ago, submissions for new writing were requested from young authors throughout the country aged 13-18 for publication in the third Wild Words anthology. The resulting publication, featuring 31 pieces of extraordinary work by 27 authors, will be launched on Saturday 8th by Ray D’Arcy.

Wild Words was created because all children and their families deserve to experience, share and enjoy books. The festival is funded by Leitrim County Council and the Arts Council with sponsorship from Avantcard and Vistamed and is supported by Leitrim County Council Arts Office, The Reading Room, Leitrim Library Service and The Dock.

To book tickets contact the Dock on 071 96 50828 and for further programme information go to www.wildwords.ie.

More News

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.