Agent: Tom Drake-Lee
Valerie O’Riordan is an Irish writer, based in the UK. She received her MA and PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Manchester, where she was supervised by Ian McGuire (The North Water, 2016; The Abstainer, 2020). Her short fiction has won both the O. Henry Prize (2019) and the Bristol Short Story Prize (2010), been shortlisted for the Society of Authors’ Tom Gallon Trust Award (2018), and commended in both the Cúirt and Galley Beggar Prizes (2018). Her flash fiction was shortlisted by the Bridport Prize four times between 2010 and 2014. Her work has been published in the O. Henry Prize Anthology, as well as in Dostoyevsky Wannabe Cities: Manchester, Unthology, The Manchester Review, LitMag, The Lonely Crowd, MIR Online, Tin House (online), and Fugue, amongst other journals, anthologies, and websites. In 2018 she was awarded a Developing Your Creative Practice grant from Arts Council England, which part-funded the writing of Positive Mental Attitude.
She co-edits the literary book review site, Bookmunch, and is senior editor at The Forge Literary Magazine. She has been a Reader for the Sunday Times Short Story prize (2010-12) and has taught fiction-writing at both the University of Manchester and the University of Bolton, where she currently works as a Lecturer in Creative Writing. As an academic, she has published on the works of Ali Smith, AL Kennedy, and Jennifer Egan.
In a previous life, she worked for the BBC as a video editor: her knowledge of mid-noughties daytime property renovation programmes is unparalleled in the literary world. When she’s not reading or writing, she’s likely to be found cycling around Greater Manchester with her kids in tow.