Dawn Watson is a writer from Belfast. Her debut collection We Play Here is forthcoming with Granta Books in Spring 2023. Her poetry pamphlet The Stack of Owls is Getting Higher (2019) is published with The Emma Press. She is a currently a poetry PhD candidate at the Seamus Heaney Centre, Queen’s University. Dawn is the recipient of an ACES award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.
Her work has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and has appeared in literary journals including Granta, The Manchester Review, The Moth, and The Stinging Fly.
Dawn graduated with a distinction in her Masters in Poetry: Creativity and Criticism from Queen’s University in autumn 2018. She previously graduated with a BA in English with Creative Writing in summer 2017, winning the Ruth West Poetry Scholarship Award, and the Dr Henry Hutchinson Stewart Literary Scholarship for academic achievement. She won the Dr George Alexander Baird Scholarship in 2016.
Dawn was a finalist in the 2020 Michael McLaverty Short Story Awards. She was selected as one of the 2018 Poetry Ireland Introductions Series poets, won the 2018 Doolin Writers’ Poetry Award, and was shortlisted for the Mairtín Crawford Award in 2018 and the Dermot Healy Poetry Award in 2017. Dawn was awarded second place in the Funeral Services NI National Poetry Competition in 2016.
Dawn has taught undergraduate Creative Writing at the Seamus Heaney Centre in Queen’s University since 2018. She is a former national tabloid sub editor of 15 years and lives in Belfast.
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