With family roots in Derry city, Roisín grew up in Sheffield. When she was at primary school, one of her teachers commented ‘she doesn’t seem to know the difference between fact and fiction.’ This was said in response to weekly diary entries populated by ice dragons, talking trees and the odd tornado.
Roisín has been writing ever since.
She holds a First Class Honors degree in English Studies from Trinity College Dublin, and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education from the University of Ulster. Her stories and poems have been published in journals and anthologies internationally. Her work features in Young Irelanders (2015), and in the award-winning anthology The Long Gaze Back (2015)
Nominated for a Pushcart Prize and the Forward Prize, she has been shortlisted for many international awards, including the Cúirt New Writing Prize, the Brighton Prize, the Wasafiri New Writing Prize and the Hennessy New Irish Writing Award 2016. Her story ‘Under the Jasmine Tree’ received an Honorary Mention in the Bath Short Story Award, reaching the top 5 out of 1000 entries. Another story ‘Him’ received an Honorary Mention in Fish Flash Fiction Prize, placing in the top 10 out of 1,250 stories. In 2015, Roisín was granted a prestigious Literature Bursary from the Arts Council of Ireland.
Roisín now lives with her husband near the Phoenix Park in Dublin, and her debut short story collection, Wild Quiet, was published by New Island on 16th May 2016.
(She still doesn’t understand the difference between fact and fiction.)
News and Reviews:
‘Roisín O’Donnell breaks the bounds of the short story… O’Donnell has innovated with a texture and depth not often encountered in the short form.‘ – The Sunday Independent
‘Roisin is among the most talented of the new generation… Reading her is like picking through a treasure trove of the human imagination – you can’t but be enriched by it. Highly recommended.’ – Dave Lordan, writer and editor.
‘Witty and intelligent… every so often you find yourself shaking your head in amazement at how O’Donnell captures a fleeting feeling.’ – Berni Dwan, Writing.ie