The Ballyfermot Writers’ Group launched a new book, containing a collection of short stories and poetry about homelessness, in the Laurels in Clondalkin last Thursday, July 21.
The book, titled ‘Home Boys Home’, features prose by internationally acclaimed Crumlin writer Rob Doyle, and Kit De Waal, whose debut novel ‘My Name is Leon’ has been made into a BBC series.
The writers from the Ballyfermot Writers’ Group, including Camillus John and Declan Geraghty, also contributed to, and have released the book.
When asked why the writers’ group wanted to delve into the topic of homelessness, writer and editor Declan Geraghty, from Rowlagh in Clondalkin, said it was a way for the group to voice their frustration with the housing crisis in Ireland.
“I think we kept mentioning it at our group meetings, it was just a topic that kept coming up,” he told The Echo.
“Our government is awful and keep ignoring it, while kids are living in hotel rooms in big families with no space or privacy to disconnect or concentrate on their schoolwork.
“Not to mention people living on the streets, then there are people who are renting from landlords that have no security from one week to the next.
“Then there are three generations of families under one roof. It was just a topic everyone seemed to have on their minds at some point, and something that some people had previous experience with.”
The group began compiling the collection in 2020, and now, two years later, they’re finally able to release it – and all proceeds will be going to the Dublin Simon Community.
Finally getting to hold a print edition of the book was a proud moment for Declan, as so much work has gone into the creation of the illuminating collection of short stories and poems.
“We have previously done small publications but holding the print version of this book felt good,” he said, “especially with all the delays we had trying to put it together.
“We have been trying to put this together since late 2020.
“From the pandemic and lockdowns and every other obstacle that came our way during that time, with this book it feels great, because our small writing group is alongside such big writers doing something for a good cause.”
‘Home Boys Home’ is out now on Amazon for €10 per copy, and all money made from the sale of the book will go to the Dublin Simon Community.
The Ballyfermot Writers’ Group holds its meetings and workshops in Ballyfermot Library on the first and third Wednesday of every month, from 6.30pm to 7.50pm.