Gráinne Clear is a Publishing Manager and Art Director for Little Island Books, an award-winning and independent publishing company based in Ireland. As art director, she is vital to the company, overseeing every book that goes to print. Clear is also the founder of the Irish children’s radio station ‘Little Pages’ and was named one of The Bookseller’s Rising Stars for 2017.
Whilst studying a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Classical Civilisation at Trinity College in Dublin, Clear started her publishing career by interning at Little Island Books one day a week. Gráinne went on to achieve a MPhil in Children’s Literature.
From there, her career has grown remarkably. From her LinkedIn profile, Clear was a board member at Publishing Ireland for two years; a body that serves and represents the publishing industry in Ireland. As well as this, she was a presenter of The Word, a children’s radio programme, alongside Little Pages, another children’s book radio programme. Clear was the founder and presenter of the very first children’s book programme on RTÉ (Ireland’s National Television and Radio Broadcaster).
In 2013, Clear joined Little Island Books as a full-time Publishing Assistant, but has since worked her way up to become the publishing manager and art director. Clear is involved with editorial, PR, design and marketing. As art director, she plays an important role in the design and management of projects being carried out. Speaking to Alice Geary, Clear describes that ‘[t]here’s a lot of creative thinking involved in making books happen, and I think I’m good at that’.
During her time at Little Island, Clear has been involved in publications of books which have gone on to win many national, and some international awards. These include; The Children’s Books Ireland Book of the Year award for Grounded by Sheena Wilkinson and The Children’s Books Ireland Children’s Choice award for Taking Flight by Sheena Wilkinson.
Aside from her work, Clear is involved with The Bold Girls project. This is a project where influential women writers in Ireland are promoting positive female roles in books. In an interview for The Bookseller, Clear said that ‘Feminism is high on the world’s agenda and the battle for gender equality that started decades ago still hasn’t been resolved. Fairytales can be an excellent way to explore our options as women today, as well as our preconceptions about what society deems acceptable.’
In her spare time, she is a storyteller of Irish tales for adults and children; she does this in libraries, schools and festivals in Ireland, such as the Dublin Book Festival and the Red Line Book Festival.