Welcome to The Real Story

The Real Story is a celebration of creative nonfiction. Not that there’s anything wrong with fiction. Look, we like making stuff up as much as anyone else does, but we’re more excited about the creative possibilities of telling the truth. We love true stories (and even mostly true stories), personal essays, memoirs, diaries, sketches and literary journalism. Reality is so much stranger than fiction. Tastes better, too.

Q&A: Vona Groarke

January 16, 2017
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four-sides-full-ecwid

Our next event, presented in partnership with The Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester, features the launch of Vona Groarke‘s wonderful new book, the single-volume personal essay Four Sides Full. One of the leading Irish poets of her generation, Vona has published seven acclaimed collections and is the editor of Poetry Ireland Review. We caught...

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“Shoe Sale” by Sile Mannion

January 5, 2017
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“Shoe Sale” by Sile Mannion

His wife died unexpectedly. She dropped dead in the shower. He found her. She hardly drank, never smoked, was forever at the gym. A healthy corpse. She had great shoes, my size. She hated waste, so he puts on a sale. I go to the sale, but not the funeral. (I didn’t know her...

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“The Absent Bride and Other Guests” by Victoria Briggs

December 22, 2016
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“The Absent Bride and Other Guests” by Victoria Briggs

In leafy, liberal Providence – capital of Rhode Island, America’s smallest state – the talk at dinner is of Donald Trump: will he get elected, if he gets elected. In the event of a possible Trump administration, most Rhode Islanders seem to be hatching an escape. One dinner guest has plans to jet across...

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‘Badminton in Threes’ by Fiona Hughes

December 15, 2016
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‘Badminton in Threes’ by Fiona Hughes

Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy Lucy, we wrote, on the squares in our maths books, in between neatly drawn triangles and beautiful algebra Xs. We sat in maths, our heads held in concentration over desks as we drew lines with rulers and worked out equations, but, when there were gaps in...

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‘All Cut Up’ by Mel Fawcett

December 8, 2016
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‘All Cut Up’ by Mel Fawcett

With its massive lion-claw feet and its huge bulk covered in worn brown leather, my mother’s old chair was like a mythological beast, hunkering down on the floor.  Despite its springs, the webbing drooping underneath like bulging haemorrhoids, and the way it leaked dusty horsehair everywhere, she loved that chair. She was sitting in...

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