The renowned Journalist Pat McArt is to sign copies of his new book, entitled War, Peace and the Derry Journal, today in Letterkenny.
The new memoir is to document the Letterkenny man’s work at the height of the troubles, when he was the editor of the Derry Journal.
He will be signing copies of the new book at the Bookmark in Letterkenny, between 12pm and 2pm this Saturday afternoon.
Holding the post from 1986 to 2006, McArt got to know some of the most important figures and peacebrokers who were in the headlines at such a crucial time.
In the run up to the launch of the book, Pat McArt said: “I suppose looking back I would have to say the Troubles did totally overshadow my entire Editorship. And I am not going to gloss over it and say they were the good old days – they weren’t. They were tough, they were demanding, and many were the nights I lay awake into the wee small hours worrying.”
“But here’s the thing: would I do it all again? Absolutely, in a heartbeat…”
The book is being published by Derry-based Colmcille Press, and Garbhán Downey from the company said that they were “privileged and proud” to be publishing the book.
“For decades, Pat McArt acted as this city’s chief advisor to – and chief scrutineer of – the Irish, British and US governments. He also served, privately and publicly, as the trusted critic and counsellor of all our local giants, improving and challenging them – and more often than not leading and directing them. It is important to remember that this was an era when, as far as all these individuals and groups were concerned, the Journal was the final arbiter and the ultimate authority.”
“War, Peace and the Derry Journal is insightful, serious and meaningful, but it can also be funny
and irreverent. After all, McArt is the man who in the midst of some of Derry’s darkest days gave
birth to the long-running, satirical Jed column, which reminded the city it was okay to laugh
“This book is not a history and it is not a biography. But if you want to acquire a true impression
of what happened in northwest Ireland between the nadir of the Troubles and the beginning of
the new peace, there is no better starting point.”