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Criminally inspired

Spectacular view

Spectacular view

Carousel Creates
Guest Blog – Susan Condon

When I heard that Louise Phillips, author of Red Ribbons, was running a Crime Writers’ Workshop at Carousel Creates Writers’ Centre I knew I would have to attend.

Although I’d been to Carousel a number of times before, on Saturday, 20 April, when I arrived for the workshop, the sun was shining and the view was even more spectacular than usual. Neither blonde, good-humoured Louise Phillips, nor the fabulous surroundings betrayed that fact that this would be a day cram-packed with information on how to effectively conjure up believable characters, including psychopaths capable of increasing the body count.

Gone to bury the bodies

Gone to bury the bodies

Arriving at 9.30am, everyone had a chance to chat over a cuppa and find out what the other writers attending were currently working on before the course began at 10.00am. They were definitely an interesting bunch and when, after a delicious lunch, we were paired up to work on writing dialogue, they managed to get a whole lot more interesting . . .

Louise, author of Red Ribbons, which was short-listed for the Irish Book Awards for Best Crime Novel of the Year, 2012 was the perfect choice to run this course. It was interesting and informative with excellent notes to bring home for reference. Writers, at every stage, benefited from her advice on everything from plot, character and pace; to crime scene evaluation and dialogue.

As a fan of social media, Louise offered tips and tricks to make it work for you as a writer – as well as tips on how to abstain until you had completed your word-count for the day . . .

Towards the end of the day we also received some pointers on how best to pitch your novel to agents and publishers. As, ‘you only get one shot’, we scribbled frantically in the hope that we may all eventually follow in Louise’s footsteps to have our work in print.

The day finished at 5.00pm with a demonstration on how to create our own novel trailer – all we need to do now is create the perfect novel!


Carolann Copland, the founder, offers a warm and welcoming venue for writers to indulge their creative side. Their minds are guaranteed to be stimulated while their bellies are fed with healthy, wholesome food.

If you’re thinking of attending a writing course, then Carousel Creates offers everything you require and more. In the words of Carolann, it offers a sanctuary which allows you to:

‘Learn to look at life under the lens of the written word. Let us infuse you with energy and focus to fire your imagination.’


Thank you, Susan for taking the time to let us know how your day went. Looking forward to seeing you back at Carousel soon. The workshop was booked out so Louise has agreed to come back and cater for those who missed out later in the year.  Keep an eye out on the website for more information on this or any of the Carousel workshops.

susan condon
Susan Condon, a native of Dublin, is currently editing her debut novel – a crime fiction thriller set in New York. Her short stories were awarded first prize in the Jonathan Swift Award, the Sport and Cultural Council (City of Dublin VEC) Competition and the Bealtaine Short Story Competition and she has also been long-listed for the RTÉ Guide/Penguin Short Story Competition. Publications include Original Writing from Ireland’s Own, Anthology 2012; South of the County: New Myths and Tales and

Twitter:  @SusanCondon


3 thoughts on “Criminally inspired

  1. It was a great day, Trish! And the good news is that there will be a next time as it was so well attended.
    We also have a poetry day coming up soon and that’s right up your street!

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