Birmingham’s first festival of poetry and spoken word will be taking to Waterstones Birmingham, the city’s biggest bookshop in February. Launching on 16th February 2017 and spanning four days, the festival will see events running over all six floors of the store and in a specially constructed indoor poetry marquee.

Its stellar line-up features established as well as up and coming poets, internationally acclaimed talent and undiscovered local artists, writing workshops, spoken word masterclasses, poetry slams and lively children’s poetry and storytelling events – all under one roof. Confirmed poets include 2016 Costa Book shortlisted Melissa Lee Houghton, PBS New Generation poet Daljit Nagra and Mona Arshi, winner of the 2015 Forward prize for Best first collection.

There is a strong family strand too with all of the children’s events free to attend. The Little Tyke Open Mic event encourages 6-16 year olds to try their hand at performing poetry. For those who want to write a poem there is a workshop themed around Myths and Monsters.

The programme features a strong line up of poetry workshops for adults too. Clive Birnie of Burning Eye Books discusses how your smart-phone can unlock creativity while Jane Commane of Nine Arches Press presents some tips on compiling and editing your poems before submitting to a publisher.

The UK’s thriving spoken word scene is represented in a dazzling series of events, featuring slams and showcases including Out-Spoken Press – the publisher behind ‘the best spoken word night in London.’

Verve Festival of Poetry and Spoken Word runs 16 – 19 February 2017. For more information and to book tickets visit

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