BBC Contains Strong Language 2021

BBC Arts’ annual poetry and spoken word festival is in Coventry this September, as it celebrates being UK City of Culture 2021. Mercury-nominated musician Loyle Carner joins Poet Laureate Simon Armitage as part of the four-day showcase taking place all around the city and on the BBC.

Contains Strong Language is a partnership between the BBC, Coventry City of Culture Trust, Writing West Midlands, and Nine Arches Press.

Highlights from BBC Contains Strong Language 2021 include:

  • Loyle Carner performs his poetry alongside poets Grace Nichols and John Agard live on Radio 3’s The Verb on Friday 24 September.
  • Poet Laureate Simon Armitage reads his poetry and performs with Land Yacht Regatta, who set Armitage’s spoken word to intense, atmospheric musical arrangements by Richard Walters and Patrick Pearson.
  • This Little Relic by Karla Marie Sweet is a metaplay about producing Ira Aldridge’s The Black Doctor, directed by the Belgrade’s Co-Artistic Director for 2021 Justine Themen. This Little Relic takes place on Friday 24 September as part of the festival, and audiences at home can hear the performance at a later date on BBC Radio 3.
  • For budding writers, BBC Writersroom hosts a panel event explaining how they scout for fresh talent.
  • BBC Radio Club partners with Creative Lives to share poems written by Coventry schoolchildren in workshops facilitated by Words First 2020 finalist John Bernard.

The Moth Nature Writing Prize submission deadline

The Moth Nature Writing Prize aims to encourage and celebrate the art of nature writing. It will be awarded to an unpublished piece of prose fiction or non-fiction or poetry which best combines exceptional literary merit with an exploration of the writer’s relationship with the natural world.

The prize is open to anyone over the age of sixteen, as long as the work is original and previously unpublished.

Each year a single judge is asked to choose one winner from entries worldwide, to feature in the winter issue of The Moth. The winner receives €1,000 and a week at Circle of Misse in France. This year’s judge is Helen MacDonald.

Learn more here.

Studying Syntax – poetry writing class

South Bank Poetry Editor Katherine Lockton runs regular Saturday poetry writing classes online. Join South Bank Poetry for their online programme of poetry writing classes, which provide a fun, personal and accessible approach to learning how to write poetry, in a friendly environment that puts the student’s learning experience first.

This class focuses on how you can liven up your syntax and rethink the order of words.

Learn more here.

international literature festival berlin 2021

The international literature festival berlin [ilb] takes place from 8-18 September 2021 live and digitally. The main program starts on 8 September with an opening speech by Leïla Slimani at silent green Kulturquartier, who will also present her new novel. Marianne Kaurin gives this year’s opening speech for the Children’s and Young Adult Literature section.

The 21st ilb takes place from 8-18 September live and digitally. Around 160 authors from all over the world gather in Berlin this autumn for readings, talks and workshops, in person or via livestream. The core sections ‘Literatures of the World’ and ‘International Children’s and Young Adult Literature’ invite guests of all ages to explore some of literature’s biggest names and new talents. In the event series ‘Speak, Memory’ we will present retrospectives of works by classic authors through readings, films and photographs. The program of this year’s literary series ‘Visions of Bioeconomy’, ‘Echo Echo. Indigenous Voices’, ‘Graphic Novel Day’, ‘Identity Politics and Wokeness – Totalitarianism of the “Left”?’ and ‘Words of Love and Hate: Misogyny vs. Female Empowerment’ use the ilb as a forum for discussions of current themes.

The festival program will be published on 22 July 2021 at, which is also when the ticket sale starts.

The international literature festival berlin is organized by the Peter-Weiss-Stiftung für Kunst und Politik e.V. in cooperation with the festival partners. It is supported by Hauptstadtkulturfonds, Auswärtiges Amt, Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung, Fondation Jan Michalski, Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, Stiftung Frauen in Europa und TuWas – Stiftung für Gemeinsinn, with funds from the federal program Neustart Kultur and other sponsors and cooperation partners.

An evening with Michael Symmons Roberts

Weaver Words Literature Festival (Sept 1-5) has an exciting upcoming program, packed full of fascinating events, talks and creative workshops in Frodsham, England. Award-winning poet Michael Symmons Roberts opens the festival with an evening of poetry and readings on Wednesday, September 1! Roberts graced our 2005 Griffin International shortlist with his brilliant collection, Corpus.

Weaver Words Literature Festival

An exciting five day programme, packed full of fascinating events, talks and creative workshops in Frodsham, England.

Mark your calendars: 2005 Griffin-shortlisted poet Michael Symmons Roberts opens the festival with an evening of poetry and readings on Wednesday, September 1!

Fool for Poetry International Chapbook Competition

The competition is open to new, emerging and established poets from any country. One of these winners will be the highest scoring manuscript entered by a poet with no solo collection (full-length or chapbook) previously published. Up to 25 other entrants will be publicly listed as “highly commended”.

Manuscripts can be between 16 and 24 pages in length, in the English language and the sole work of the entrant with no pastiches, translations or versions. The poems can be in verse or prose.

There is an entrance fee of €25 for each manuscript. Entrants may enter more than one manuscript. Once entered, no alterations can be made to the submission. Simultaneous submissions are accepted but please notify us immediately should your manuscript be accepted elsewhere. The winners will be selected by a panel of renowned poets.

The winning chapbooks will be published by Southword Editions and launched at the Cork International Poetry Festival. It will be offered for sale internationally through our own website, Amazon, and in selected independent book shops.

Deadline: August 31st 2021