Maureen Boyle grew up in Sion Mills in County Tyrone and now lives in Belfast. She wrote poetry as a child, winning a UNESCO medal for a collection in 1979, when she was 18. She was runner-up in the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Prize in 2004 for an unpublished collection. She studied at Trinity, East Anglia, Universities of London and Ulster and Queen’s University Belfast – completing a Masters in Creative Writing there in 2005 with Medbh McGuckian. She has received many Arts Council bursaries and in 2007 was awarded the Ireland Chair of Poetry Prize and the Strokestown International Poetry Prize. In 2011 she was a recipient of an ACES – an Artist’s Career Enhancement Award - from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. In 2013 she won the Fish Short Memoir Prize. She teaches Creative Writing with the Open University and English in St Dominic’s Girls’ School in Belfast. Image courtesy of Malachi O’Doherty.