Jacob Charles Wilson

Handing it Down: Colm Tóibín and Colin Barrett

for Port Magazine
Colm Tóibín and Colin Barrett stand side by side.
Photo by Ellius Grace

Some months back, I travelled to Dublin to meet with writers Colm Tóibín and Colin Barrett, who one year ago were brought into a working relationship by the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. Since 2002, the initiative has paired established practitioners, representing a variety of disciplines, with promising, young talents. Speaking to the pair, I heard how Tóibín ended up choosing Barrett, how their relationship had developed, about Tóibín's insatiable desire for work, and how Barrett even came to teach the mentor a few things.

Colm's only ever been open and honest about his whole process, he's not giving me a hard task really. He knows what's wrong with my work and he knows what I need to do, but he's going to let me figure it out myself, to gently guide me towards believing I've come to these conclusions myself.

Handing it Down: Colm Tóibín and Colin Barrett is published in issue 26 of Port Magazine.