Last night I was at the launch of a new collection of Irish short plays at the Peacock bar. We managed to catch Mark O’Rowe on his way to the gala opening of his new film Broken and he gave an insightful, encouraging and funny speech about the plays. It was lovely to see the plays published, as I’d worked on most of them when they were presented as public readings on the Peacock stage over the past few years. Each year the Abbey Theatre commissions a group of emerging playwrights to write twenty minute two-handers for us and we present them on the Peacock stage. It’s always a good night; you can’t beat the sense of excitement that accompanies the presentation of new work by new voices. The selection of plays published in Irish Shorts is taken from the 20 Love series of short play readings from 2008 and the Fairer Sex series in 2009. We’re hoping that if there’s a positive enough response to the book, Nick Hern Books will publish a follow up including plays from Something Borrowed in 2010 and Into the Woods in 2011.