Colin Barrett began publishing his short stories in the Dublin-based literature journal The Stinging Fly in 2009, and published his debut collection, Young Skins, in 2013. Growing up in County Mayo before moving to Dublin to complete an MA in Creative Writing at University College Dublin, the young writer has been widely praised for his literary debut. Barrett has been awarded the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award, the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature and the 2014 Guardian First Book Award. The stories contained within Young Skins tell of the lives of young men and women in the fictional town of Glanbeigh: a collection of drug dealers, bouncers, recovering addicts and others whose lives are shaded with loneliness and unfulfilled dreams. Writing for the Irish Indepedent, David Robbins described Barrett as 'a writer who understands people, place and the effects of porter on the human psyche.'