Claire Hennessy is a writer, editor, and creative writing teacher from Dublin.
Her most recent young adult novels are Like Other Girls (2017) and Nothing Tastes As Good (2016), published by Hot Key Books. She is also the author of nine teen novels published by Poolbeg Press, as well a work of historical fiction, Seeds of Liberty, for 10+.
Her short fiction has recently appeared in wordlegs, Crannog, Necessary Fiction, Litro, Irish Literary Review, The View From Here, The Ogham Stone, Headstuff, Long Story Short and The Incubator. She is currently developing a short story collection. She is the recipient of three Arts Council bursaries (for both short fiction and YA fiction).
Praise for her writing includes:
“Utterly magnificent! I read it with awe.” (Marian Keyes)
“Nothing has quite as daringly set out to cross new frontiers” (Robert Dunbar, The Irish Times)
“a perceptive, well-written and well-constructed book by a writer who observes with a clear eye and a sensitive heart.” (Frank Murphy, Children’s Books in Ireland)
“mirrors adolescence convincingly.” (Niall MacMonagle, The Irish Times)
“Well-written with funny, hard-hitting dialogue.” (Mary Arrigan,The Sunday Tribune)
“This sharply-observed tale of the struggle to ‘fit in’ and combat low self-esteem will strike many resonances with youngsters everywhere.” (Ferdia MacAnna, Sunday Independent)
“This new offering is her most daring yet… It’s a mature, thoughtful book.” (Sue Leonard, Woman’s Way).
Since the publication of her first book in 2000, she has given readings, talks, and workshops in schools and libraries around the country for children, teenagers, and adults, and has spoken at conferences on topics such as writing for children, teenagers’ reading habits, young adult fiction, and creative writing in gifted education. She has delivered workshops for both young people and adults at a number of literary festivals, including Listowel Writers’ Week, Mountains to Sea, and Waterford Writers’ Weekend.
Claire has also taught at the Centre for Talented Youth, Ireland (CTYI) at DCU for more than a decade, and designed and taught two courses concentrating on novel writing for the Irish Writers’ Centre for a number of terms. She is a regular reviewer for The Irish Times and Inis magazine (Children’s Books Ireland) and contributor to writing.ie. She works with Penguin Random House Ireland on their children’s/YA submissions, and is the co-founder and co-editor of literary journal Banshee.
Claire holds master’s degrees in Popular Literature and Creative Writing, both from Trinity College Dublin, funded by a Trinity Scholarship.
Her particular areas of interest when teaching include: getting started; novel writing and outlining; motivation and time management when writing; and children’s and young adult fiction. At Big Smoke she teaches beginners’ classes (both general and fiction), intermediate workshops, specialist workshops in novel writing and children’s/YA fiction, and co-teaches Dublin Young Authors with Dave Lordan.