Dedicated to All the Others: Hilary McCollum

Hilary McCollum is an Irish writer and feminist activist with a long standing interest in creative responses to trauma. She has explored issues related to violence against women and girls through narrative non-fiction, fiction and drama. Her writing often focuses on women’s resistance to abuse and oppression. She is Publishing Fellow at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University Belfast, having completed a PhD in Creative Writing at the Centre in December 2021. Her first novel, Golddiggerwon the Golden Crown Literary Society prize for historical fiction in 2016. 

Episode 3: Hilary McCollum, writer, Fellow of the Seamus Heaney Centre, Belfast, and Una in conversation. Talking feminist life writing. Dedicated to All the Others: Conversations about creative process

Author & playwright Hilary McCollum, Fellow of the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queens University Belfast, is in conversation with Leeds born artist and writer Una, author of Becoming Unbecoming and creative director of Red Dress Collective. McCollum's 2008 autobiography Funny Peculiar relates her childhood in a loyalist household in Northern Ireland.  Hilary and Una were born in the same year and met on Twitter. As children they shared a love of The Wombles, Mr Benn and David Soul. They also shared experience of childhood sexual abuse. As adults they share an interest in representations of VAWG, and both wrote politically contextualised memoirs about their childhoods. Hilary tells Una about her writing process and her work studying lesbian literature. They discuss writing process, historic and contemporary literature, "police procedural" TV drama, the suffragettes, women's sexual pleasure, and the importance of the clitoris Links to mentions: Unbelievable Netflix series (2019) with Toni Collette. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848) Anne Brontë Robert Browning's Murder Poems (Born 1812–Died 1889) The Investigation, 2020 TV drama. About the 2017 murder of Kim Wall. Joan Smith's Misogynies First published 1989. (2013 edition available from The Westbourne Press) Andrea Dworkin feminist writer, 1956–2005 The History of Betsy Thoughtless by Eliza Haywood (1751) Artemisia Gentileschi Italian Baroque Artist, 1593–1656 What Beyonce Taught Me About Race, TEDx talk, Brittany Barron (2016) Lilian Lenton, Suffragette, 1891–1972 The Cat and Mouse Act (1913) Operation Yewtree, police investigation, Gary Glitter, Jimmy Savile Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse Hilary McCollum is an Irish writer and feminist activist with a long standing interest in creative responses to trauma. She has explored issues related to violence against women & girls through narrative non-fiction, fiction and drama. Her writing often focuses on women’s resistance to abuse and oppression. She is Publishing Fellow at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University Belfast, completing a PhD in Creative Writing at the Centre in December 2021. Her first novel, Golddigger, won the Golden Crown Literary Society prize for historical fiction in 2016.

Podcast notes

Author & playwright Hilary McCollum, Fellow of the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queens University Belfast, is in conversation with Leeds born artist and writer Una, author of Becoming Unbecoming and creative director of Red Dress Collective. McCollum’s 2008 autobiography Funny Peculiar (published as Constance McCullagh) relates her childhood in a loyalist household in Northern Ireland. 

Hilary and Una were born in the same year and met on Twitter. As children they shared a love of The Wombles, Mr Benn and David Soul. They also shared experience of childhood sexual abuse. As adults they share an interest in representations of VAWG, and both wrote politically contextualised memoirs about their childhoods. Hilary tells Una about her writing process and her work studying lesbian literature. They discuss writing process, historic and contemporary literature, “police procedural” TV drama, the suffragettes, women’s sexual pleasure, and the importance of the clitoris

Links to mentions:

Unbelievable Netflix series (2019) with Toni Collette.

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848) Anne Brontë

Robert Browning’s Murder Poems (Born 1812–Died 1889)

The Investigation, 2020 TV drama. About the 2017 murder of Kim Wall.

Joan Smith’s Misogynies First published 1989. (2013 edition available from The Westbourne Press)

Andrea Dworkin feminist writer, 1956–2005

The History of Betsy Thoughtless by Eliza Haywood (1751)

Artemisia Gentileschi Italian Baroque Artist, 1593–1656

What Beyonce Taught Me About Race, TEDx talk, Brittany Barron (2016)

Lilian Lenton, Suffragette, 1891–1972

The Cat and Mouse Act (1913)

Operation Yewtree, police investigation, Gary Glitter, Jimmy Savile

Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse

Hilary McCollum is an Irish writer and feminist activist with a long standing interest in creative responses to trauma. She has explored issues related to violence against women & girls through narrative non-fiction, fiction and drama. Her writing often focuses on women’s resistance to abuse and oppression. She is Publishing Fellow at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University Belfast, completing a PhD in Creative Writing at the Centre in December 2021. Her first novel, Golddiggerwon the Golden Crown Literary Society prize for historical fiction in 2016.