June 2013, What’s on, Midlands Spoken Word


Sheffield Poetry Festival 1st-9th June
Fri 13th- 16th June Warwick Words
Fri 14th -23rd June Worcester Literary Festival
Sat 15th/17th June Leamington Spa, Peace Festival
Fri 21st June -6th July Ashbourne Festival
Sat 21st June- 30th, Ludlow Festival

Day by Day

Sat 1st Poets Place. Yorks bakery Cafe, 1/3 Newhall st , Birmingham
An informal gathering of poets, writers and performers. Come along to meet like‐minded people, give and solicit feedback on your poetry, or just sit back and write for a couple of hours without interruption.

Sun 2nd Buzzwords, Exmouth Arms,Bath Road Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL53 7LX, 7pm Workshop, open mic

Sun 2nd Sunday Xpress Doors 1500, Start 16:30 Adam & Eve Bradford Street, Birmingham B12 0JD Open mic

Mon 3rd SW&N ClubThe Newhampton Inn, Riches Street (off Newhampton Road West) Wolverhampton WV6 0DW 8pm £3 in,Storytelling, poetry, a tune, or a song!

Tues 4th Night Blue Fruit, Coventry,7.30pm start, free in, Tony Owen hosts-open mic sign up on the night.

Tues 4th Word ,Y Theatre, East Street, Leicester LE1 6EY, just opposite Leicester Train Station7pm performers, 8pm, Audience, Open mic plus headliner. £6in
WORD! is the longest running poetry and spoken word night in Leicester. Based at The Y Theatre, Leicester, it takes place on the first Tuesday of every month, between 8.00 and 10.30pm. The evening is composed of an open mic, followed by a booked act-

Wed 5th Spire Writes, White swan, 16 St Marys Gate, Chesterfield,It’s summer at last and we’re back with poetry to entice you indoors for the evening. This month, Spire Writes will be trying out a gig at a new venue, real-ale specialist pub The White Swan for a change (and so I can bring my dog and not worry about him being in a hot car!).

We’re very excited to have a guest slot from Manchester’s Steph Pike. Steph has performed extensively across the UK and also leads poetry workshops. She runs a spoken word night in Manchester called Word Up.

We’ll also have a longer slot from Carol Robson who has supported Spire Writes from the start and whose book ‘Words of Darkness and Light’ was published last year.

As usual, it’s free entry and everyone is welcome to read a short poem at open mic – let me know if you’d like to sign up for a slot.

Wed 5th June The Vault, Church St, Rugby, CV21 3 PT, 7.30pm, £3 in, Three poets, two DJS,one musician three film shorts.


Wed 5th Speak Up ,Hare & Hounds,Kings heath Birmingham, 7.30pm
One of Birmingham’s favourite events returns, hosted by the indomitable Jodi Ann Bickley and featuring Dean Atta and John Berkavitch. There will be open mic slots for those willing to share their words, and cake for everybody.

Thurs 6th Good Impressions Spoken word, Cafe Impression, Atkins Building Hinckley, LE10 1QU,7.30pm £5in Hosted by Tom Phillips,ist Thursday Monthly

Thurs 6th Blackdrop Open Mic @ Canal House Bar, Canal Street, Nottm .8-10pm £3

Our event has an open mic, slots are approx 5mins long. Blackdrop is open to over 16s.

Poetry. Story. Comedy. Rap. Hip-hop. Song. Must be own original material. ALL WELCOME.


He’s worth every penny! Come on down and bring ya friends.

Thurs 6th Parole Parlate, Old Rectifying House , Worcester, 730 pm, £3 in:

Thur 6th The Poetry Evening, The Shrewsbury Coffeehouse,Castle Gates, Shrewsbury. 7.30pm, Liz Lefroy officiates,David Calcutt and Nadia Kingsley reading from their pamphlet, ‘Road Kill’. Also appearing: Gwen Smith, winner of the 2013 Roy Fisher Prize, and runners up Adrian Perks and Jo Flynn, and Shrewsbury-based poet Barry Tench.

Sat 8th Geoff Stevens Memorial Day ,Oldbury Theatre Langley, 2-5 7-10pm Joint winners of Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Prize Julie Maclean and Terry Quinn will be launching their debut collections on June 8 at Oldbury Theatre Langley, Open mic, food and writers bring your books to sell.

A double event at The Barlow Theatre bar, Langley, in commemoration of Geoff Stevens, the late, great Black Country poet and artist.

The book launch of Terence Quinn and Julie Maclean, winners of the Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Prize instigated by Indigo Dreams Publishing. Doors open at 1:00 pm, with plenty of time to meet old friends and new, and the book launch commences at 2:00 pm.

Poets are welcome to bring their own books for display/sale.

Food and drink will be available.

A few days after his birthday, on the 4th June, a celebration of Geoff Stevens by his partner, Geraldine, and some of his many poetry friends.

Some of Geoff’s artwork and poetry will be on display. Selected works will be read and there will be open mic for his poet friends to add their memories and poetry readings.

It is intended that suitable arrangements will be made for the sustenance of the inner poet, prior to the evening session which will start at about 7:00 pm

Further details will appear here in due course. Details may be subject to change but should add to enjoyment of the day.

Could be irreverent and entertaining. juliemacleanwriter.com

Mon 10th Pub Poetry Nottingham The Canal house, 48-52 Canal Street, Nottingham, NG1 7EH,8pm, 2nd monday : Free in, Open micContact Nick on pubpoetry@nottscomedyfestival.co.uk

Mon 10th pure and good and right, Sozzled Sausage, Leamington Spa, CV32 4NX,
Admission £3 (£2 Student/OAP) With Special guests, Birmingham Slam Stars
From time to time we are located upstairs, so please let us know if you require disabled access before the event.
If you would like to know more about the night email: pgrpoetry@gmail.com

Tuesday 11th ‘City Voices’, City Bar, King Street, Wolverhampton. WV1 1ST 7.45pm Free admission.

Tuesday 11th ‘Mouth and Music’, the Boars Head Gallery, 39 Worcester Street, Kidderminster, DY10 1EW. 8.00pm Tickets £3.00 With Maggie Doyle and Monserrat Carbonara

Tues 10th Scribal Gathering The Crown Stony Stratford:7.30pm,Get ready for another fantastic feast of musical mastercraft and poetical proficiency, bringing together lachrymatorially lyrical local live talent and perfervid performers from perfurther afield. When: Tuesday 11th July 2012. Doors open at 7.30 for a prompt 8.00 start.
Where: The Crown, Market Square, Stony Stratford MK11 1BE.
How: Free entry. Sign up for open mic on the night. Arrive early to avoid disapproval.

Tues 11th Mouth & Music 6,Boars Head Gallery, Kidderminster 8pm, £3 in:The 6th in our monthly series of totally & utterly acoustic spoken word & music nights! Open mic sign-up from 7.30 5 minutes / 2 songs each, Admission £3 (free to performers) Presented by Heather Wastie & Sarah Tamar for kaf creatives

Tues 11th Tales at the Edge, White Lion Inn, Bridgnorth, Shropshire,Tales at the Edge is one of the country’s oldest and most established storytelling clubs, meeting in Bridgenorth on the 2nd Tuesday of every month (except August) at 8 pm.
Wed 12 th Scribal gathering Stony Stratford
Scribal Gathering is getting into the festival season with a summer showcase of superior songwriting and spoken word. With Stony Live still sounding in our hearts and Waterside waiting in the wings, what better way to keep the flame of live entertainment burning than with an evening of open mic music and poetry?

Our featured performers for the evening are David Goo, an intense, creative and intimate singer song-writer sharing his distinctive sound with audiences across London and the South-East (http://th…e150friendsclub.com/) and The Zeroes, arguably the finest, friendliest, funniest and 8th best band in Milton Keynes (https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-ZEROES/113877568149).

Along with the open ended, open minded open mic, welcoming performers of all kinds to share their creativity and showcase their talent before a supportive, receptive and surprisingly tolerant audience, Scribal Gathering brings its usual blend of live music, poetry, and an overwhelming sense of spiralling chaos once again.

Wed 12 th The Quad Derby QUAD, Market Place, Cathedral Quarter, Derby, DE1 3AS Second Wednesday 19.30 Free in, A monthly night of performed poetry for everyone, new performers always welcome or just come and listen, More details from QUAD or contact Les on T: 01332 206 734, http://www.derbyquad.co.uk
Wed 12 th Tea for Two, Stapleford, Cotgrave. 92, Derby Rd, Stapleford, Nottingham , NG9 7AD
An evening of poems and stories hosted by two local
performers – Dave Wood and Richard Young.

This time the featured act is: Jackie Brewster

Those wishing to read/perform are welcome to. Slots of approximately 5 minutes are available. Any spoken word, whether stories, poems or jokes is fine.

This a good chance to try out your writing in a relaxed environment.

Entrance : ‘buy a drink for admission’

There will be no microphones and all seating will be in the round.
Wed 12 th Flying Donkeys, Voicebox, Forman St Derby
This coming Wednesday 12th June, we have a particularly appealing treat, we hope! We are hosting a one off “pop-up” restaurant – a flying donkeys special! We usually serve teas and coffees and cake etc, but this time – for a bit of fun – we thought we would extend this to include savouries too – not quite sure what yet! But along the lines of nice breads, cheeses, cold meats, a little salad, as well as the usual home made cake, and hot drinks. I might even produce a bottle of wine or two! To cover thes…e additional costs, for this night only we are charging £10 to all comers to include all your food and drinks – and of course the entertainment!

This month the storytellers are a winning mix of your very own “flying donkeys” – myself Sophie Snell, Roy Dyson and Mel Blount in the first half – we have some fabulous new stories for you! Then in the second half we have an open slot (one teller only – already nominated – a little surprise for you!) followed by a special “hot spot” from Staffordshire based storyteller Maria Whatton and local musician Sarah Matthews, who will be bringing a taster excerpt of their new show “The Lunar Men”

So a varied, delectable night of tempting treats, we hope!

You can book ahead by emailing me (which always helps with planning) or a quick call (Tel 01332 840007) or just turn up on the night 🙂

Flying Donkeys meets at the Voicebox, Forman Street, Derby DE1 1JQ. 8.05pm start. (Parking in the Abbey Street car park or on the road is free after 8pm). Find us by picking up the Derby inner ring road, skirting round the city centre from west to east, keep going over the roundabouts along Lara Croft Way till you see a roundabout with a sign post for “Abbey Street” car park – park up there and and look for a small side road the other side of the car park – this is Forman Street. The Voicebox is at the end through a wrought iron gate into a little brick courtyard, and a double-glazed porch where either Roy, Mel or I will welcome you!

Thur 13th Big irish Night, the old crown High Street Digbeth Birmingham
Next installment of Irish centred poetry, story telling and music. Come and share your affinity for Irish culture with a like-minded group of people.

You are warmly invited to the next installment of The Big Irish Night at The Old Crown in Digbeth on Thursday the 13th of June at 7.30pm. Please come and enjoy a warm, friendly atmosphere with people who have an affinity for Irish culture.

As well as the opportunity to enjoy reading and listening to poetry, prose and music of an Irish persuasion, there will be a special guest appearance from Paul Murphy songwriter, poet, singer and front man of The Destroyers.

There are open mic slots available. If you would like to perform you can sign up on the night or contact Laura Yates in advance on 07916 269 208 . We politely ask that all poetry, readings and songs follow our theme of Irish culture and heritage. This is likely to be a popular night and open mic slots will be allocated on a strictly first come, first served basis.

Looking forward to seeing you at this very special evening.

Fri 14th Open Mic, Wednesbury Museum & Art Gallery, 7.30pm, free in

Fri 14th Worcester Poet Laureate 2013/14 Guildhall, High St Worcester, Join us for the launch of the Worcestershire Literary Festival and watch 10 poets go head to head as they compete for the title of Worcestershire Poet Laureate 2013/2014.

Judges include: current Worcestershire Poet Laureate Maggie Doyle, County Arts Officer Steve Wilson, University of Worcester’s Jane Britton and Secretary of WLF Polly Robinson.

£10.00 individual ticket, £30.00 for a group of 4 tickets.
To open the event, we will present the prizes for the Young Writer competition.

Sat 15th Scribal Gathering at the waterside, Stony Stratford noon

Scribal Gathering is hosting the open mic tent at the Waterside Festival again this year. There will be the usual combination of open mic music and poetry with featured acts, so if you want to perform at this popular community event, head over to the Scribal Gathering tent from 12.00 on both Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th and put your name on the list.

There will also be featured performances every half hour from a selection of the many fine performers of music and spoken word that we have welcomed onto our stage over the last three years.

This will be the third year of Scribal at Waterside. So established are we, we are now referred to as Stage 3. See their website for the full listings: http://www.watersidefestival.co.uk/

Sat 15th Poets place. Yorks bakery Cafe, 1/3 Newhall st , Birmingham
An informal gathering of poets, writers and performers. Come along to meet like‐minded people, give and solicit feedback on your poetry, or just sit back and write for a couple of hours without interruption.

To keep up-to date with other events and info: http://www.facebook.com/placeforpoets
sun 16th June Wocrester Literary walk On Sunday 16th June, we aim to create a Group Poem by Worcester Voices, as part of the 2013 Worcestershire Literary Festival. The poem will be written and performed in a single day, in a coming together of different poetic/dramatic voices from across the U.K.

Poets will walk and work with 2012-13 Worcestershire Poet Laureate, Maggie Doyle, and explore and write about various locations in the city of Worcester. We will work together to create a Group Poem from our writing, rehearse, and perform the finished… piece at the Parole Parlate Festival Special in the evening at The Old Rectifying House, starting at 7.30pm.

Please note this event is on the same day as Worcester’s Walk for Life so we recommend approaching Worcester from the East side (Cathedral side of the river) as many roads will be closed nearer to Castle Street / River Bridge. We will meet by the postbox by the war memorial outside the Cathedral.

We’re looking for writers who enjoy collaboration and performance to take part in this one day event. If you are interested please use the ‘Get Tickets’ link to secure your place – we look forward to sharing a wonderful day with you.

Tickets cost £15.00 each.
Sun 16th June Shrewsbury Coffee House, Castle gates, Shrewsbury 11am
British-Guyanese poet, novelist and playwright is giving an exclusive reading. Come and enjoy a lazy Sunday coffee whilst listening to wonderful poetry

Mon 17th June Wordsmiths @ warwick

In this regular monthly series, poets come together in a celebration of all things spoken, sharing secrets and tales in an intimate performance space.

If you are not familiar with the names then this is your chance to witness local, national and international poets sharing stories and opinions as they engage in no-holds-barred conversation.

Previous wordsmiths include Lemn Sissay, Zoe Brigley, Kate Tempest, Polarbear and Inua Ellams.

Wordsmiths & Co. is a collaboration between Apples and Snakes and Nine Arches Press, with support from Warwick Arts Centre and Bloodaxe Books.

Jo Bell will be with Lorna Meehan, Matt Merritt, David Morley & Luke Wright.
Lorna Meehan is an actor, theatre practitioner and playwright and has been performing poetry for about ten years. She was part of Birmingham collective New October Poets and toured various festivals, including Glastonbury. She has also worked with Apples and Snakes, both as a performer and workshop facilitator. Her poetry ranges from comic ranting to mellow introspection and she has recently been honing her Slam skills. Lorna occasional performs as her alter ego, monosyllabic American teenager Melinda Deathgoth, who recently subjected London audiences at Jawdance to her particular brand of poetic misery. She is currently part of the Decandant Poetry Diva’s who will be performing at Ledbury Poetry Festival later this year.


Matt Merritt is a poet and wildlife journalist from Leicester. His third collection, The Elephant Tests, is forthcoming from Nine Arches, and previous publications are hydrodaktulopsychicharmonica (Nine Arches, 2010), Troy Town (Arrowhead, 2008), and Making The Most Of The Light (HappenStance, 2005). He blogs at polyolbion.blogspot.co.uk


David Morley’s “The Gypsy and the Poet” is due from Carcanet Press in August followed next year by “Biographies of Birds and Flowers: Selected Poems”. He writes for The Guardian and Poetry Review. He judged the 2013 T.S. Eliot Prize and is judging this year’s Foyles Young Poets Award.


Luke Wright has been described as “the best young performance poet around,” by The Observer. He writes bawdy bar room ballads about Westminster rogues and small town tragedies. His poetry stage shows have toured the world. His seventh, Essex Lion, debuts this summer at The Assembly in Edinburgh. His debut collection, Mondeo Man, was published this year to five star reviews. The Huffington Post declared it to be: “a riot of cheek, giggles, boobs, tears and Facebook.” He co-curates The Spoken Word Arena at Latitude, one of the country’s biggest poetry events.

Mon 17th June The Worcester Whitehouse Hotel, 62, Foregate Street, Worcester.
At least EIGHT and probably NINE (if the new Worcestershire Poet Laureate can make it) Poets Laureate performing together for a lively night of poetic words, fun, entertainment and whatever else they choose.
The wonderful Julie Boden, Poet in Residence at Birmingham Symphony Hall (Birmingham Poet Laureate 2002-3)
The international poet that is the one and only Dreadlockalien aka Richard Grant (Birmingham Poet Laureate 2005-6)
The incomparable Giovanni “Spoz” Esposito” – almost a citizen of Worcester! (Birm…ingham Poet Laureate 2006-7
The graceful and stylish Charlie Jordan – she of BBC Radio fame (Birmingham Poet Laureate 2007-8)
Roy Mcfarlane whose rich chocolate voice is bound to make his words last longer than an evening (Birmingham Poet Laureate 2010-11)
The current Birmingham Poet Laureate – Stephen Morrison-Burke, a young man with a different perspective on life
The thought provoking and witty, Brenda Read-Brown, current Gloucestershire Poet Laureate
Witty, poignant, funny, a tad risque plus rhyme in abundance and modest with it, are just a few things the current Worcestershire Poet Laureate, Maggie Doyle, says about herself!
and the new Worcestershire Poet Laureate, whoever they may be
Amazing poets, amazing poems, an amazing evening! £10.00 per ticket
Restaurant and bar facilities available

Wed 19th Templar Poetry, Lamb & Flag, The Tything, Worcester, 8pm; Open mic, third Wednesday, Alex officiates contact:Alex McMillen, Alex McMillen,Templar Poetry, PO BOX 7082, Bakewell, Derbyshire, DE45 9AF,Tel: 01629 582500, Mobile: 07918166975
Wed 19th Birmingham Storytelling cafe, kitchen garden cafe, Kings Keath
ANA MARIA LINES – our Guest for June


Summer is here again. Time for parties, outdoor activities and barbecue. Why not to try this unusual recipe from the Amazon?

The drums from the forests sound and announce the party.

From ancient knowledge the Amazon stores many secrets. Secrets of cures, secrets of the spirits, secrets of love . Its legends and myths deal with humanity’s favourite themes: Love and Hate. Questions about love, sex, relationships and the difference between the male and female mind are brought forward in the anthology of indigenous myths collected by the anthropologist Betty Midlin and retold here with humour and passion by Ana Maria Lines.

The drums from the forests sound and announce the feast.

The drums from the forests sound and announce Barbecued Husbands.

Food served from 6:30, stories start at 7:30. Tickets £7. Available on the door, from wegottickets.com or by calling 0121 443 4725

Wed 19th 42 Special Drummonds, Worcester
42 Worcester,’ the Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi and Fantasy monthly event in Worcestershire, is delighted to announce three best selling UK Horror writers coming along to the WLF and 42 Worcester Special in June 2013.

Authors Adam Millard, Dave Jeffery and Steve Byrne will be made welcome at Drummonds Bar at The Swan with Two Nicks, 19 June 2013. They will form a panel to discuss with local writers and horror aficionados what horror writing is about and how the best writers approach it.

Steve Byrne is the au…thor of ‘Phoenix’, a dark horror novel set during the Vietnam War. He’s had a number of short stories published – the latest will appear in the anthology ‘No Monsters Allowed’. Steve was born and bred in Wolverhampton. His parents soon feared that something wasn’t right. While the other kids were reading Enid Blyton, his head was buried in a copy of the latest James Herbert.

Dave Jeffery is perhaps best known for his zombie novel Necropolis Rising which has gone on to be a UK #1 Bestseller. His Young Adult work includes the critically acclaimed Beatrice Beecham Series, BBC: Headroom endorsed Finding Jericho and the 2012 Edge Hill Prize Long-listed Campfire Chillers short story collection. His short story Daddy Dearest features in the award-winning Holiday of the Dead anthology (this is Horror Awards, Best Anthology, 2012).

Adam Millard is the author of thirteen novels and more than a hundred short stories. Probably best known for his post-apocalyptic fiction, Adam also writes fantasy/horror for children. He created the character Peter Crombie, Teenage Zombie just so he had something decent to read to his son at bedtime. Adam also writes Bizarro fiction for several publishers, who enjoy his tales of flesh-eating clown-beetles and rabies-infected derrieres so much that they keep printing them. When he’s not writing about the nightmarish creatures battling for supremacy, Adam writes for ‘This Is Horror’, whose columnists include Shaun Hutson, Simon Bestwick and Simon Marshall-Jones.

Come along to hear what Adam, Dave and Steve have to tell us about successfully publishing their work. They will value your questions and give you insight to the world of horror and publication in the genre. Tickets are just £3 on the door or can be bought online.

Thur 2oth Hit the ode, Victoria PH, Birmingham City Centre
Hit the Ode brings the most exciting poets from the region, the country and the world to the heart of Birmingham. Join us! We have poems. Poems you’ve played tag with when you were younger; poems dug up by puzzled archeologists; poems last seen racing down the ring-road on big wheel tricycles. Good poems. Come and get them.

From Birmingham, Roy McFarlane
Roy McFarlane was Birmingham’s poet laureate in 2010/11, and still works hard to make poetry fun and accessible, celebrating the vibrancy of performance …poetry as well as encouraging the beauty of poetry on the page.

From Bangor, Martin Daws
An electrifying poet whose live sets blend free musicality and innovative lyricism in a unique improvised theatre, Martin Daws’ work explores life, nature and who the hell we think we are, anyway! Martin’s poetry shows a rare breadth of style and voice, and he has also been introduced to an audience as ‘a thoroughly nice man’.

From Ireland, Abby Oliveira
A slam champion and a passionate educator, an inspired poet and a rigorous writer, Abby is one of Ireland’s most exciting performers. Abby returns to Birmingham for the first time in two years.

A very few open mic slots will be available; sign up by email (bohdan@applesandsnakes.org) or on the door.

Tickets £5

Thur 20th Matt Black at Ashbourne library,An evening with Derbyshire Poet Laureate, Matt Black. Ashbourne Library, Thursday 20th June at 7.15pm. One of a programme of events to celebrate the opening of the new Ashbourne Library.Matt will be talking about his role as laureate and reading a selection of his poems inspired by Derbyshire, including a new poem about Ashbourne.Matt will be joined by members of Ashbourne Writing Group.

Free event but please telephone 01629 533950 (Ashbourne Library) to reserve tickets.

Fri 21st The Sitting Room, Upper Galdeford, Ludlow, 7.30pm,£5 Helen Ivory and Brian Johnstone
Tickets on the door, Internationally renowned poets Helen Ivory and Brian Johnstone read a selection from their recent work. ‘Waiting for Bluebeard’ is Helen Ivory’s 2013 collection from Bloodaxe. ‘Helen Ivory creates a troubled yet beguiling world rich in irony and disquiet.’ Penelope Shuttle.

Brian Johnstone’s ‘The Book of Belongings’ (Arc, 2009) has been described by Kathleen Jamie as “A mature, elegant collection by a gifted poet.”
“The fruit of distilled meditation, with a weight of experience and thought behind it.’ The Manchester Review

Fri 21st Spoken Worlds 19:30 The Old Cottage Tavern , Byrkley St,eet, Burton-upon-Trent DE14 2JJ Open mic gajwriter@btinternet.com

Fri 21st the Shipping Forecast, The Shakespeare pub, 146-148 Gibraltar Street,Sheffield
The Shipping Forecast is back at the Shakespeare this month with 2 fantastic headliners. POET AND THE LOOPS combines spoken word with live looped electronics, while JIM HIGO’s quick wit and undeniable charm make him simply the best Old Skool Punk around. Not to be missed!

If you’d like a slot reading on the open mic, please get in touch by posting below or emailing theshippingforecast@hotmail.co.uk. The event coincides with International Music Day, so we’d especially like to encourage any musical musings you might have written!

As usual we’ll have a whole load of silliness, games and features too. Entrance £3 on the door, 7:30PM start.

Fri 21st Word Up Yorks Bakery Cafe,1-3 Newhall Street, B3 3NH
Who would have thought it? Word Up is celebrating its 1st year birthday. It has taken leaps and bounds to come this far and we hope that you’ll all be joining us in celebrating this momentous occasion.

Join us for Word Up this June at Yorks Bakery Café (www.yorksbakerycafe.co.uk) to join in the celebration. There WILL be cake. Let’s make it a night to remember – get your dancing shoes on, put on your best threads, and we’ll see you there!

Have a question? Want a slot? Message us on here (fb), email us at: word–up@hotmail.com, or tweet us: @wordup_brum

Sat 22nd Poetry and Pints, Globe Inn, Ludlow, 7.30pm, headliners and open mic, a brilliant Ludlow Festival fringe event

Sun 23nd Rhyme and Tells at the Six Bells in Bishops Castle, Shropshire,Meets every 4th Sunday of the month (except for public holidays) at 8 pm – 10.30 pm. It is free admission and an open session for poetry, prose and storytelling.
For further details please contact Mike on 01588 680685.

Mon 24th Poetry Open Mic, calahouse, Nottingham, 8pm

Tuesday 25thPurple Penumbra Open Mic, Barlow Theatre, Oldbury:7.30pm
Bring your poetry and your pals to this open mic event, or just come and be entertained.
Those with a musical bent who can fill in a gap or two with something melodic and acoustic are particularly welcome.
Enliven, enrich and enhance the experience of the famous Barlow Theatre bar with your presence, why not?

Tuesday 25 June 2nd revived Poetry Wednesbury 7.00 pm at Wednesbury Library, Walsall street Wednesbury. Brendan Hawthorne has details.

Tues 25th The Telling Space, Mythstories, *NEW VENUE* (relocated from Wem) Mythstories,The Shrewsbury Coffeehouse,5 Castle Gates, SY1 2AE,Wem, Shropshire,The club meets on the 4th Tuesday of every month unless otherwise stated. Please check the website under ‘opening hours and events’ http://www.mythstories.com or contact Dez or Ali on 01939 235500 for further information.
Meet at 7 pm for refreshments (bring food to share) or at 7.30 pm for stories. A chance to listen or an opportunity to tell. Admission is free.

Tues 25th Word Wizards Buckingham Hotel Buxton 19.30. Open mic three minute slam format More info Poetryslamuk@aol.com

Wed 26th “42″ Open Mic Night (Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy) Lunar Bar, New St Worcester, 7.30, Free in:last wed monthly E-mail: 42openmicnight@42genrearts.co.uk

Wed 26thPackhorse Poets,The Packhorse Inn, Crowdecote, near Longnor,Derbys on the fourth Wednesday of each month, 7.30pm

Thur 27th Bilston Voices Cafe Metro 46 Church Street, Bilston WV14 0AH Fourth Thursday 19:00 Only booked poets perform: emmaasif@hotmail.com

Fri 28th Level Up,Fusion Centre, South & City College Birmingham, 5.30pm

Level Up – and explosive night of spoken word in performance, featuring some of the country’s very best poets alongside local rising stars. Besides sets from our special guests, you can expect open mic slots for you to share your work, poetry video showcases, and time to socialize and share your work with like-minded people. This is a chance to make your voice heard. So what are you waiting for? Write the words. Grab the mic. Level up! Featuring: Polarbear.

Lorra Lorra Laureates
Come and join us for an evening of Laureates; a one-off, never-to-be-repeated event where the spoken word is at its very best. Not one, two or three but seven laureates! Expect appearances from Dreadlockalien, Spoz, Charlie Jordan, Julie Boden, Roy Mcfarlane, Mr. Stephen Morrison-Burke, Brenda Read-Brown, Dame” Maggie Doyle and the third Poet Laureate of Worcestershire. Tickets are £10.
Monday 17 June, 7.30pm | Worcester Whitehouse Hotel | events.worcslitfest.com

Sat 29th Droitwich Live Lit, 10 am -9pm

Droitwich Festival Literary Day:
‘Live Lit’ Saturday, June 29

DROITWICH Arts Network presents a free literary day featuring an eclectic mix of performance poetry and poetry, short fiction and novel readings, complemented by music from festival artists.

The Droitwich Spa 10th Anniversary Summer Festival and Worcestershire Literary Festival post-festival event also includes book signings and an open mic section for local writers and performers.

MUSIC – from 10am to 5pm in Salters Shopping Centre

LIVE LIT – at Park’s Café, Victoria Square, Droitwich

DAYTIME (10am to 4pm) – authors and performance poets will be giving a 15-minute taster of their work, followed by a book signing and/or chance for people to ask them questions.

4PM – 5PM STORYTIME – Children are invited to bring a story to share with Sarah James (aka Sarah Leavesley) and/or listen to Malcolm Wakeman and Ann Reed tell the Pirate and the Dinosaur story complete with hand puppets. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.)

EVENING (6pm – 9.30pm) – An evening of 10-15 minute tasters of author and performance poets’ work, including a chance to buy their books and have them signed. There will also be a sign-up on the night open mic section offering a number of 5- 10 minute slots. These spots are limited, so please arrive early if you wish to sign up for one.

MC – Sarah James, poet, former journalist and short fiction writer. Her poetry collection Into the Yell (Circaidy Gregory, 2010) won third prize in the International Rubery Book Award. Her website is at http://www.sarah-james.co.uk.


Andrew Owens – short fiction, published in anthologies, magazines and online.

Math Jones – poet and actor, a former bookseller who has written and performed on and off for most of his life and also performs under the stage name, Math Sams.

Antony Owen – poet, his second collection ‘The Dreaded Boy’ was published by Pighog Press in 2011 and he was a 2011 poetry competition finalist in The Wilfred Owen Story.

Catherine Crosswell – performance poet, she has performed at festivals including the Edinburgh fringe, Cheltenham, Swindon and Stratford Festival of Literature. Her website is at http://www.catherinecrosswell.co.uk.

Kathy Gee – poet, Worcestershire Poet Laureate 2011 finalist published by various magazines, anthologies and the Avoncroft Museum poetry trail 2012. Her blog is at http://www.wordstring.co.uk .

Tony Keeton – poet, his work has been performed at festivals, interpreted by local theatre companies, and won him a number of prizes. His unique output includes the literary lives of penguins, biblical histories of the common sock and the truth about kebab-meat.

Claire Walker – poet, her work has appeared in print and online publications including Ink Sweat and Tears, Hearing Voices, Be: Magazine, PIYE and the poetry trail at Avoncroft Museum.

Rod Griffiths – short fiction, a Worcestershire writer with two books to his name, ‘Aimless Fear” and ‘Side Effect’. He can be found online at: http://rod-griffiths.blogspot.com/.

NEW WORCESTERSHIRE POET LAUREATE (a spot is being kept open for the new county bard hopefully. If not, Sarah James.)

Samantha Hunt – poet, an undergraduate drama student, and freelance writer. Her poetry has appeared in various anthologies, and she has performed at events throughout the West Midlands.

Euginia Herlihy – poet, currently working on her second collection ‘The Amazing Feeling’.

William Shatspeare – jazz poet

4PM – 5PM STORYTIME – Children are invited to bring a story to share with Sarah James (aka Sarah Leavesley) and/or listen to Malcolm Wakeman and Ann Reed tell the Pirate and the Dinosaur story complete with hand puppets. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.)


Sheryl Browne – novelist. Sheryl brings fabulous, funny, heart-breaking romantic comedy! She now has four books published under the Safkhet Soul imprint.

Tom Wyre – poet, shortlisted for Staffordshire Poet Laureate 2012 and a prize recipient of the Walsall Mayor’s Poetry Awards. He has performed at many festivals and open mic events across the UK.

Polly Robinson – poet, published her own collection of poetry last year. She has also been published in various anthologies and magazines in print and online.

Suz Winspear – performance poet, writes and performs poetry and gothic monologues with a distinctive visual style, has had work published in ‘Ripples’ and ‘Dark Tales’, and also a non-fiction book about the Worcester Theatre Royal.

Geraint Roberts – novelist. Winner of prizes for short stories from BBC Radio Northampton and Aber Valley Arts Festival. His website is http://www.geraintroberts.com.

Ian Bowkett – performance poet, who crowbars shamefully nerdy references into passionate pieces about love, alcohol, and that grey area in between love and alcohol.

Dan Purdue – short fiction, is a widely published and prize-winning short fiction writer, currently working on his first novel.

Lisa Ventura – poet, Worcestershire Literary Festival director and founder, who writes contemporary poetry, mainly on the news, current affairs and issues that are close to her heart.

Tony Judge – novelist, poet, short fiction, satire. His first novel, ‘Sirocco Express’, deals with contemporary people smuggling. His second, ‘The Whole Rotten Edifice’, is a historical fiction.


ANDREW OWENS is a member of the Worcester Writers’ Circle and regularly performs at spoken word events throughout the West Midlands. He has had several short stories published in anthologies, magazines and online. Andrew was born and raised in Canada. He lives in Worcester, is married and has three children.

ANTONY OWEN is from Coventry and had a first collection published in 2009 by The Heaventree Press. His 2nd collection The Dreaded Boy was published by Pighog Press in 2011. Owen was a 2011 poetry competition finalist in The Wilfred Owen Story and is working on a third collection planned for late 2014.

CATHERINE CROSSWELL is a bidet doubter, lover of lists and musician. Catheine hopes to sneak much food and music into her poems while dressed as a pirate. Previously she has performed at the Edinburgh fringe, various festivals including Cheltenham, Swindon and Stratford Festival of Literature.
Catherine Lives in Malvern and is joint organizer of the ConFab Cabaret night at Re-con. For more info go to http://www.catherinecrosswell.co.uk

CLAIRE WALKER fits writing poetry around raising her young daughters. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications including Ink Sweat and Tears, Hearing Voices, Be: Magazine and PIYE. She took part in the recent poetry trail at Avoncroft Museum and is a member of the Worcestershire Stanza.

DAN PURDUE is a short story writer whose work has been published online and in print, in places including Writers’ Forum magazine, Jersey Devil Press, Defenestration, The View From Here, and The Waterhouse Review. His stories have won prizes in the 2012 H.E. Bates Short Story Competition, Flash500.com, and the Seán Ó Faoláin Prize. He was also shortlisted for the 2010 James White Award and The Guardian’s 2009 Summer Short Story competition. He is currently working on his first novel.

EUGINIA HERLIHY is a South African born lives in Worcester, Worcestershire. She’s a writer/poet, she writes poetry and Christian books. Her first collection of poems ‘The Experiences Of Life & Prayers’ was published July 2011 and her second title ‘Take a Step Right Now Towards Your Dreams’ was published January 2013. She also has some of her poems published by ‘Poetry Rivals’ 2011 and other poem was published by ‘Who is Who in Poetry’ 2012. Now she’s working on her second collection of poems ‘The Amazing Feeling’.

GERAINT ROBERTS is a novelist and winner of prizes for short stories from BBC Radio Northampton and Aber Valley Arts Festival. He wrote a piece to be used in the centenary commemoration service of the Senghenydd mining disaster. His debut novel, ‘Forest Brothers’ (Circaidy Gregory Press), is set in 1944 Estonia, about a British officer sent on a covert operation and is faced with the life and love of a previous age. His website is http://www.geraintroberts.com.

IAN BOWKETT is a performance poet from Birmingham, currently working in a Coventry Laboratory. With an academic background in science as opposed to the arts he crowbars shamefully nerdy references into passionate pieces about love, alcohol, and that grey area in between love and alcohol. He is currently working on his first recorded collection and an excuse to use a Rubik’s Cube onstage. Mouth and Music, Kidderminster, described him as “very popular with our audiences who love his clever, entertaining poetry and his stunning ability to remember the most complex pieces.” In fact, they were so blown away with his verbal agility, that they’ve snapped him up for a feature spot next autumn!

KATHY GEE started writing creatively (but secretly) in 2007 and joined the Worcestershire Stanza in 2011 when she was a finalist for the Worcestershire Laureate. Since then she has had poems accepted by various magazines and anthologies and organised the Avoncroft Museum poetry trail in 2012. Her blog http://www.wordstring.co.uk is an experimental vehicle for occasional video poems.

LISA VENTURA is the Director and Founder of the Worcestershire Literary Festival and writes poetry and short stories in her spare time. In May 2013 she had 3 of her poems published in “Ripples – Collected Works Of Friends In Verse” by Jackie Summers. She writes contemporary poetry, mainly on the news and current affairs and also about issues that are close to her heart. Lisa loves spending time with her husband Russell and her guilty pleasure is watching 80’s American soap operas such as Dallas, Dynasty and Falcon Crest.

MATH JONES is from London. He has written and performed on and off for most of his life, but he has found himself writing more and more since moving to Worcester, a few years ago. After a long time as a bookseller, he retrained as an actor in Birmingham in 2009, and now also performs under the stage name, Math Sams.

POLLY ROBINSON is a member of Worcester Writers’ Circle, secretary of Worcestershire Literary Festival, and one of three organisers of 42 Worcester, a gothic, horror, sci-fi and fantasy spoken word event. Born in Worcester, raised in Malvern, travelled a bit, returned to Worcester aeons ago. Polly returned to writing following careers in management and education and published her own collection of poetry last year. She has also been published in various anthologies and magazines in print and online.

ROD GRIFFITHS is a Worcestershire writer with two books to his name, ‘Aimless Fear” and ‘Side Effect’ . He is a regular reader at events in Worcester and was a finalist at this year’s ‘As you read it’ in Malvern. He can be found online at: http://rod-griffiths.blogspot.com/.

SAMANTHA HUNT is an undergraduate drama student, and freelance writer. Her poetry has appeared in various anthologies, and she has performed at events throughout the West Midlands, including the Library Theater, The Sunday Xpress, Smart Poets, Kitchen Garden Cafe, Birmingham Artsfest, Coffee Shop Poets and Parole Parlate as part of Worcestershire Literary Festival. Her plays have been performed at Espresso Sized Theatre, and The Crescent Theater as part of Birmingham Artsfest. She is also a mum, and advocate for the arts and mental health.

SARAH JAMES (aka Sarah Leavesley) is a poet, former journalist and short fiction writer. Her poetry collection Into the Yell (Circaidy Gregory, 2010) won third prize in the International Rubery Book Award. She has been guest poet/headlined at numerous spoken word nights and festivals and has a poem on the Polesworth Poets Trail. Her website is at http://www.sarah-james.co.uk.

SHERYL BROWNE brings you Fabulous, Funny, Heart-breaking Romantic Comedy! Her novel Recipes for Disaster, commissioned by Safkhet Publishing, was shortlisted for the Innovation in Romantic Fiction Award. Somebody to Love has been nominated for The People’s Book Prize. She now has four books published under the Safkhet Soul imprint: ‘Recipes for Disaster’ – Sexilicious Romantic Comedy combined with Fab, Fun Recipes; ‘Somebody to Love’ – Sigh with contentment, scream with frustration. At times you will weep; ‘Warrant for Love’ – Three couples in a twisting story that resolves perfectly; ‘A Little Bit of Madness’ – White Knight in Blue rescues The Harbour Rest Home.

SUZ WINSPEAR writes and performs poetry and gothic monologues with a distinctive visual style, for which she is well-known on the local spoken word scene. She has had work published in ‘Ripples’ and ‘Dark Tales’, and has also written a non-fiction book about the Worcester Theatre Royal. She lives in a disused church, has a day-job in a museum, and spends a lot of time sitting in the dark, cultivating unwholesome obsessions.

TOM WYRE was shortlisted for Staffordshire Poet Laureate 2012 and a prize recipient of the Walsall Mayor’s Poetry Awards. He has performed at many festivals and notable open mic events across the UK and has been invited to attend the prestigious O’Bheal poetry event to be held in Cork, Ireland in July 2013. He highlights worthy causes through the use of poetry and stagecraft when a guest performer at charity events. A book of new work complete with CD is planned for publication in July of 2013 to supplement his first collection Soliloquy published in 2009.

TONY JUDGE writes novels, short stories, satire and poetry. His first novel, Sirocco Express, deals with contemporary people smuggling. His second, The Whole Rotten Edifice, is a historical fiction set during the desperate defence of Moscow in 1941/2. Tony’s satires have been broadcast by http://www.radiowildfire.com. He is a member of the UK Society of Authors.

TONY KEETON’s work has been performed at festivals, interpreted by local theatre companies, and won him a number of prizes. Referred to by Gary Longden at Poetry Alight as “A master of the surreal”, Tony’s unique output has previously explored such diverse topics as the literary lives of penguins, sabre-toothed mice, the plaintive love songs of mythological beasts, biblical histories of the common sock, and the truth about where kebab-meat really comes from.

WILLIAM SHATSPEARE is a jazz poet from Stourbridge. He is forty-five years old and in reasonable condition for a man of such poor character and bad habits. He thought he’d invented jazz poetry but on googling it found this to be incorrect. Mr. Shatspeare has several books to his credit, all of them written by other people but purchased quite legitimately, receipts can be provided if required. He is a single parent with two good-sized children, Accident and Emergency. He often reads their poetry out in public and passes it off as his own. He did have a much better biography than this but the dog ate it.

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2 Responses to June 2013, What’s on, Midlands Spoken Word

  1. Jill Tromans says:

    Hi Gary, many thanks for the regular updates and information. I’m interested in the ‘White Lion’ event at Bridgnorth. Do you know if there is a contact number?
    Cheers Jill.

    Date: Sun, 9 Jun 2013 18:04:10 +0000
    To: jilltromans2002@hotmail.com

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