Three Books That Have Inspired Me:
- Peig by Peig Sayers (1936)
Life story of Blasket Islander and seanachaí Peig Sayers, written from her recorded and dictated memoirs. Other kids at school hated it. For me it opened up the world of the past, and made the Irish language worth learning.
- Dialann Deoraí by Dónall Mac Amhlaigh (1960)
Mac Amhlaigh worked on English building sites in the 50s and 60s around the time my parents also left Ireland for some years to work in England. I was gripped by his stories of life as a migrant worker on the road, more so than by Kerouac’s “On the Road” which I read a few years later.
- The Lonely Londoners by Samuel Selvon (1956)
Selvon’s book predates Mac Amhlaigh’s by a few years, but though one writer was from Trinidad and one from Ireland, the two have much in common. In spite of the title, Selvon gives a warm and humorous account of the new immigrant’s life in the Big Smoke.
Three Books I Have Enjoyed Reading Recently:
- A Descent into the Maelström by Edgar Allan Poe (1841)
- Beacons: Stories For Our Not So Distant future – ed. Gregory Normington (2013)
Lane reviewed this collection here: ashfeldt.com
- The Good Shepherd by Gunnar Gunnarson (1940)
Lane Ashfeldt is an Irish writer whose first short fiction collection, SaltWater, is published by Liberties Press (2014). SaltWater contains a dozen or so stories inspired by the sea. Some are set in Dublin where Lane grew up, others in various parts of the world, including stories set in England and Haiti which respectively won the Fish Short Histories Prize and the Global Short Stories prize. The book has been called ‘an accomplished collection by a writer who has mastered the craft’ by short story afficionado Clem Cairns of Fish Publishing. Short stories by Lane Ashfeldt have been published in Ireland, England, the US and Greece.
Visit Lane online at: ashfeldt.com