This evening here in Dublin sees the launch of a new anthology of short stories entitled Silver Threads of Hope. The anthology is in aid of the Irish charity Console and features stories by 28 different Irish authors and it is edited by Sinead Gleeson.
Console is a organisation which was established in 2002 by Paul Kelly who had experienced the death of a loved one by suicide. Console supports people in Suicidal Crisis and those bereaved by suicide through professional counselling, support and helpline services.
Console is a now a national organisation and has centres in seven counties in Ireland; Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Athlone, Wexford and Kildare. More information about Console and their services is here.
The 28 stories in Silver Threads of Hope are new or have been unpublished to date and they have been collected and edited by Sinead Gleeson with an introduction by Anne Enright whose idea it was to bring these stories together to raise awareness and funding for Console's work. The writers involved are Kevin Barry, Greg Baxter, Dermot Bolger, John Boyne, Declan Burke, John Butler, Trevor Byrne, Mary Costello, Emma Donoghue, Roddy Doyle, Dermot Healy, Christine Dywer Hickey, Declan Hughes, Arlene Hunt, Colm Keegan, John Kelly, Claire Kilroy, Pat McCabe, Colum McCann, John McKenna, Belinda McKeon, Mike McCormack, Siobhan Mannion, Peter Murphy, Nuala Ni Chonchuir, Phillip O'Ceallaigh, Keith Ridgway, William Wall.
Silver Threads of Hope is published by New Island and is available in Irish bookshops as of this week. When I first read a few months ago that Sinead was editing this collection and the organisation that it was in aid of I knew that it will be one of the most important books of the months ahead. In my twenty something years living here in Dublin I have met many people who love reading and Sinead is without a doubt someone who is so passionate about the importance of reading and good writing in people's lives. I know the Silver Threads of Hope project is something in which she has combined her good heart and love of the art of the short story. The title of the anthology is from the Adrian Crowley song Bless Our Tiny Hearts. The lyrics are featured in the book and can be read here.