Book Jacket


rank 4883
word count 82113
date submitted 30.03.2010
date updated 30.03.2010
genres: Literary Fiction
classification: universal

The Enniskillen Taxi Driver (And Other Stories)

Blanaid McKinney

This is my new collection of short stories. Comments welcome!


I'm a published Irish author (Short Story collection "Big Mouth" - Phoenix, and Novel "The Ledge" - also Phoenix), who is steadily beginning to despair of the future of the Short Story genre. We seem to be mired in a nostalgic, retrospective, bucolic swamp at the moment (priests, farmers, the 1970s, etc - Christ, it's like the bloody literary equivalent of "Ballykissangel"...), which is ruinous for Irish writers in general,and the short story genre in particular. The 14 stories in my new collection " The Enniskillen Taxi Driver & Other Stories" are politically engaged, culturally a bit bit shouty, occasionally, authentically melancholy, exquisitely annoyed and (continuing my tiny, subterranean, linguistic battle against laziness, cliche and mediocrity), endeavouring to quietly use the English language/vocab in an entirely different way. It would be tremendously gratifying to hear from other (particularly Short Story ) writers, to gauge the health off this genre. All the best Blanaid McKinney

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Ransom Heart wrote 1474 days ago

Very much enjoyed the taxi driver's encounter as a youngster with Mountbatten. The Paddy and Mary coupling is very convincing. Good work, will enjoy reading more. Backed earlier today. Marianne (Saint Paddy and the Sundial)

SusieGulick wrote 1474 days ago

Dear Brian, I love literary fiction. :) You put us right there with you as you told your story. Your one liner paragraphs & few word sentences were really radical! Excellent! And throughout to whole book! What stories you have! It is a good read because you create interest by having short paragraphs (you may want to cut the longer ones in 2 for an easier faster read) & lots of dialogue, which makes me want to keep reading to find out what's going to happen next. I'm backing/commenting on your book to help it advance. Could you please return the favor by taking a moment to back/comment on my TWO books, "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not" & the unedited version? "Tell Me True Love Stories." Thanks, Susie :)

jfredlee wrote 1475 days ago

Hi, Blanaid -

Damn, short stories that are actually worth investing the time to read.

Your characters are really characters - something rare in publishing today. And I'm envious of your voice.

Delighted to back The Eniskillen Taxi Driver, and I would love to see your thoughts on my book.

Good luck here (though I don't think you'll need it).

And thanks.

- Jeff Lee

Barry Wenlock wrote 1477 days ago

Hi Blanaid -- My laptop is the clockwork variety, made by Triang in around 1970, and it takes about ten minutes to load a page. So, I usually get a bit ratty when it takes me twenty minutes just to reach the narrative. However, I was glad i spent the time with yours (I had the feeling I might be), and I spent another hour reading happily, which is a little unusual on the site.
I love the poetic style and the way you've based it all around the taxi-driver.
From trawler man to hair-dresser -- no wonder he laughed -- so did I, and on many other occasions, too. Backed with pleasure, Barry
Little Krisna and the Bihar Boys

Susan Bennett wrote 1478 days ago

All too often in the publishing world, there seems to be a preference for 'page-turner' stories to be poorly written and for well-written, 'literary' stories to tell no story at all. Me, I see no excuse for either. My bookshelf is filled wih a backlog of literary journals that I can't be bothered reading. I don't know what the MFA stands for in MFA programs, but whatever the hell it is, it's killing the short story. There seems to be only one sort of short story in the world now, and writers are queuing up to learn how to rewrite it over and over again. That's what made me give up reading litmags (and the fact that these same writers seem intent on telling the world how it should revise itself according to their vision of what it should be.) That short story competitions are often judged by the teachers of these MFA programs has only served to make the situation worse.

Me, I crave stories that are both well-written and which actually tell a story (without necessarily or always having 'something to say', though there's plenty of room for that too, but I have no wish to be 'instructed'.)

The Enniskillen Taxi Driver actually got my heart racing. Dear God - a stimulating short story - in these times? You'll be burned at the stake. I loved it. It's precisely the sort of story I'd like to see more of, one in which both the writing and the story matters. And any literary writer who uses the word "tootle" is all right by me.

Richard Daybell wrote 1479 days ago

As a short story writer myself, I know how difficult they are to write, but how rewarding they are when they succeed. Like here. Your characters' voices are authentic (I particularly like the weather man -utterly gorgeous storm, killed 17 people), and you give prose a good workout. You've also done what I think is necessary in a short story collection. You've provided an overall structure that ties everything together. Unfortunately, they're hard to market -- agents and many publishers won't have anything to do with them. That you've published a collection in this environment says something. Good luck here.

pinkcoffee wrote 1479 days ago

I wish you the very best of luck

Burgio wrote 1480 days ago

I don't know about the health of the short story genre. I just know I like to res varied and ad them. Because short stories are what fit my life style best. I like the way this collection is varied so a reader can choose a read that best fits his/her mood that day. Good going. Burgio (Grain of Salt).

plip wrote 1480 days ago

Wouldn't mind a ride in that taxi, though only if the driver was talking. Which probably wouldn't happen, him being a listening sort.
Well done. Lovely language.

lizjrnm wrote 1480 days ago

Favorites so far - In God's Company and Please! This is a wonderful collection and I lik ethe unique manner in which you set up your stories "morning, noon and night" interspersed with others. You have a very smooth writing style and even though I am not from your part of the world it was still easy to relate. These stories will do well here! BACKED with pleasure!

The Cheech Room

Angel22 wrote 1480 days ago

Really enjoyed your style and pace, also a great fan of the short story. I'm adding you to my WL, and will read further when time allows.

Once Upon a Blue Moon

Jim Darcy wrote 1480 days ago

Chapter 3. Blimey, you pack a lifetime into a short story that mesmerises and grips the reader like a terrier and won't let go. Bloomin' marvellous. A cast of real characters who the reader can identify with. Not surprised you're published. Jim Darcy The Firelord's Crown

soutexmex wrote 1480 days ago

I see that you are on many shelves but no one has bothered to comment you, so that honor will be mine, being Authonomy's #1 commentator. Spend some time on your pitches I cannot overemphasize how you need to master this basic sales technique to grab the casual reader. That's how you climb in ranking to gather more exposure and comments to better your novel. SHELVED!

I can use your comments on my book when you get the chance. Cheers!

The Obergemau Key
Authonomy's #1 rated commentator