ieiMedia the Musical


I love this monkey-rabble. I was a nervous wreck. I thought I would pass out. I thought I would beat the crap outta Lexi. My script lost its staple. I had a plan to yell at James and break the fourth wall if anything went wrong. I stared at one women in the front row the whole time until she got nervous.

So, we messed up. We flubbed our lines; we didn’t get the music stands. We drank A LOT of wine, but it was awesome and perfect. It was wonderfully hard work hacking out the plays and then polish them up into something very shiny. I do wish, though, we could have introduced the play writes with their plays.


Leaked music video for our new album: BE A MAN


International Performance Anxiety

Well, it is over. The performance was a great experience. I think I got through Rockabye Changeling on nerves… Then, just doing my tiny rolls as a minion and gang member it was great just standing there. But, when it was my turn to read my poem… I was shaking so bad before I walked up. Once I started actually saying my name and such I just fell behind how I wanted this poem to be read. That felt great. The Bird was fun, I think I was thinking how close we were to being done and the fact I love the group and it just made being a cocky bandit that much better.

JHISS Performance Reflection

I can’t believe we did it! We’ve become international performers in Ireland. Who gets to say that?! WE DO!

I also can’t believe it’s over. Can I turn back time to 7pm and start fresh from the very beginning, when we first enterered the studio theatre and took our rightful places on our creaky black chairs? Can I go back to my very first interview in Ireland, my very first international conversation?

Performing in the John Hewitt festival has been one of the most inspiring moments in my life. Although I was nervous, I was mostly excited, especially for my solo journalism piece. Overall, I think I conquered my nervousness.

It was delightful to mingle with the audience afterwards, meeting likeminded people and making friends. Also, the wine reception was a nice touch!

JHISS-show experience

Acting in the show was an awesome experience. I was nervously excited to perform as a reader/actor. I am glad I got the chance to do this. I would say it’s been a growth. The crowd was great and they seemed to enjoy our acting and our plays. I can’t help but feel relieved. My character, the old soldier was a trip to play and I heard people laugh, which made me feel like we were connecting with our audience. Marion and Sam, I owe some of that to you. Thanks girls!

It was a great opportunity to play and sing my song to see if an audience liked it.  The song was a response to John O’Connor’s story about giving a locket to his first and only love. Then wondering if she ever thought of him. He never found another woman he loved.

Then to find out that Fionnuala Gough his niece was there at the show was over-whelming. She was so kind and said the song moved her. She said there are more stories that O’Connor wrote around this time about that Christmas and she’s going to get them to me.  I made a friend and that is awesome!

Tomorrow I’m looking forward to my poetry class. The teacher is inspiring us with more techniques to get us writing. 

My workshop was great

My instructor continues to exceed my expectations as I continue through the workshop of writing for young children. I have come up with anything from small pieces of writing to whole story ideas just by listening to her instruction. She has been a great inspiration and I know Thursday’s workshop will blow me away and inspire me alltogether.

Writing for young people:

I really like the workshop writing for young people and am constantly amazed by how quickly it starts and ends.

Sheena Wilkinson is always giving us different tips and tricks of getting started on new ideas, and well manages the time of the class. I really like that with each exercise she asks two people to share, but it is never allowed to be the same two people. It keeps the pace and attention of the class well.

My favorite thing we did was when she instructed us to pick a picture we liked the most. Once we did so, we had three minutes to write a story about the picture from the eyes of someone who hated it. I chose a snowy mountain with two people skiing on it, and wrote from the perspective of the mountain. It was a cute little story that I want to expand on.

Maureen Boyle is Absolute Perfection

Working with Maureen Boyle in my memoir workshop has been an amazing experience. Maureen has a heart of gold, and has so many tips for new writers trying to expand their knowledge in their careers. By teaching memoir, Maureen has opened my eyes to a new perspective on my own life and past encounters.

In this workshop, we have to reflect on certain experiences within our lives or other’s lives in a creative aspect. Memoir falls under the creative non-fiction category, and has much more creative leeway than chronological biographies. By taking this workshop with Maureen I am now able to portray my life in a more exciting and intriguing way to my audience.

Workshops Workshops Workshops!

I love my workshop. I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason- and this workshop was choice #2, and I got put in!

I am in writing for children and I am loving it. I really have been enjoying all the exercises that the instructor has been giving us. I also like how we have to volunteer to share our work- I don’t enjoy being forced.

Our instructor, I forget her name (I’m sorry), is very captivating. She reads her own work which blows me away. She is very talented! I feel lucky to be put in her workshop.

This week with Siobhan Campbell

First of all: Not only is there another American in this class, but she’s from Silver Spring, which is just 20-30 minutes or so outside of Baltimore. What’re the odds?

I’m so sad that there’s only one more of these classes. I keep reminding myself that this isn’t a 14-week course like at school, and I’ll have to say goodbye to my fellow students just as I’ve learned their names and heard their style.

What I really enjoy about Siobhan’s teaching is that she wants us to tap in to what contemporary poetry is like. The draft we have due tomorrow is a sonnet, and she had us read some sonnets that weren’t traditionally sonnet-y. She’s interested in bringing form to our lives today, and using our specific cultural vocabulary to do it. The first class when we went around the room and introduced ourselves, she also had us share a saying or idiom from our families that had been passed down to us. She says this opens up our personal relationship with language and reveals who we are as people and poets. She is tuned in to how relationships with poetry are different regionally, and perhaps this aspect came to the forefront during class because there are two Americans in the workshop.Yesterday, I made an observation about another student’s very abstract poem, and Siobhan observed that Americans tend to be more tuned in to “elliptical” and “dissociative” poetry, while Irish are more tuned in to lyrical traditions. She is pulling both parties out of their comfort zone, I think, and encouraging us to strike a balance between the two.

I also appreciate that Siobhan takes the time to direct us to writerly resources– poetry essays, archives, and even gives us the names of literary magazines to submit our work to. She gave us her email so we can message her our drafts for a closer read than can be achieved during class time and so she can direct us to an appropriate publisher. It’s great to have a teacher invested in the literary careers of the students. I sent her my drafts last night, and look forward to her feedback, which I’m sure will be extremely helpful.

Irish Current Events

Read an interesting article in the Belfast Telegraph yesterday, which talks about budget cuts forcing U.K tuition to rise exponentially. According to the article, inflation and reduced public funding is causing a gap of between £900 and £2,500 per student at Queen’s University in Belfast. This is bad news, especially with the influx of Brexit. Although no one really knows what will happen, odds are that even more inflation will occur.

I talked to an astronomer at the Armagh observatory yesterday and he told me that Brexit is one of the worst things that can happen to educational institutions in the U.K – especially for science. Some of the most revolutionary science research occurs at Oxford and Cambridge in England and if funding is cut to those institutions, there will inevitably be a halt in scientific research.