Interviewed by Sue Leonard.
Published in the Irish Examiner on 8th December 2012.
Beginner’s Pluck. Jenni Doherty.
Writing from an early age, Jenni published her first poem at 10. Her mother was an English teacher and reading was always encouraged.
During a journalism course in Dublin, Jenni did work experience for Hot Press. Then, moving to Derry, she worked for the Guildhall Press. She’s worked with books ever since; in bookshops, publishers and the library service. Always writing, she’s performed poetry, touring Ireland with The Poetry Chicks.
Who is Jenni Doherty?
Date of birth: 11th April 1971. (A twin,) in Greencastle, Co Donegal.
Education: Loreto College Coleraine, for O ‘Levels; Community College in County Donegal for Leaving Certificate. Cathal Brugha Street DIT Dublin, Social Studies, then Palmerstown College, a year’s course in Journalism.
Home: Derry for the past 20 years.
Family: Single. I have joint custody of a mixed breed terrier, Shorty.
The Day Job: Working in my book shop, Little Acorns, and marketing and publicity for Guildhall Press.
Interests: I love playing Pool, and walking. I love music. I wish I could sing – I got kicked out of a choir. I collect film music. I listen to it when I’m writing.
Favourite Writers: As a bookseller, I couldn’t choose favourites. I love reading poetry, I love Irish writers, local, and children’s writers.
Second Book: I hope my next book will be a collection of short stories.
Top Writing Tip: To write well, you have to read. Write something you would like to read. That’s the only way to develop your voice.
Web: No. Twitter: @irishpenjen
The Debut: Rain Spill. Guildhall Press:€8.64. Kindle: Not available.
A mixture of prose and poems, Rain Spill has a sure sense of place. With an overriding backdrop of weather, many of the poems are about growing up from the young teenage years to womanhood. Doherty deals with dark issues like suicide, abortion, rape and domestic abuse, but also with gentler subjects like family, siblings, and simply going out and having a good time.
The Verdict: A varied collection which includes some powerful and lyrical images.
© Sue Leonard. 2012.