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An excerpt from'Love Many'

That November I had pressed against the deadweight of depression – of a broken heart, the post-broken-heart universe, ringing tepidly with rain – and downloaded Tinder. I went on a date with an American who said, I could put my hands around your waist, and then, when the wine list came, pointed at the wine list and squeaked, halfsies? I went on a date with a man from Cork who had lived in Boston for one year and acquired an accent so accurate and bulletproof I could not believe he was really from Cork. This man also had a low lisp, which made much of what he said sound malevolent and sexually exciting. He rented an extraordinary apartment near the Peppercanister church, a section of converted townhouse with a ceiling that stood on columns of yellow plaster, scrunching at the centre to a vortex of snowy garlands: the sash window opened onto the fire escape and the Boston-Corkonian sat in a chair, smoking out of the window, holding forth. By two in the morning I felt exhausted and deranged by his strange monologues. I lay on my face and proceeded, for the rest of the night, to play dead.

A little bit about Niamh Campbell

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Niamh Campbell was born in 1988 and grew up in Dublin. Her short fiction and essays have appeared in The Dublin Review, 3:AM, Banshee, gorse, Five Dials, and Tangerine. She was awarded a Next Generation literary bursary from the Arts Council of Ireland, and annual literary bursaries in 2018 and 2019. She holds a PhD in English from King's College London and has been a postdoctoral fellow for the Irish Research Council at Maynooth University. Her debut novel This Happy is forthcoming from Weidenfeld and Nicolson in June 2020. She lives and works in Dublin.


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