Fred Johnston was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1951 and educated
there and Toronto, Canada.
He is the founder of Galway City's annual literature festival, C?irt,
which he resigned from in 1988; more recently he founded The Western Writers'
Centre there. Eight volumes of poetry, three novels and a collection of
stories have been published; throughout his working life he has reviewed
new books, visual art for such publications as The Sunday Times
and Harpers & Queen, and broadcast extensively.
He received a Prix de l'Ambassade to work on the poems of French
poet, Michel Martin, in 2000 and has worked and read in France. He has
published translations of the work of Martin and also Senegalese poet,
Babacar Sall. Recently he has been awarded an Ireland Fund bursary to a
residency at The Princess Grace Irish Library in Monaco. Described often
as an acerbic reviewer, he has regularly criticised the Irish literary
establishment for not becoming more involved with the politics of their
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