Skip to main content Skip to site map (in footer)

Birmingham Book Festival 2011 announces its line up

  • Date: 6 September 2011
  • Area: National
birmingham book festival

Birmingham Book Festival. Credit: Writing West Midlands

Will Self, Tony Harrison, Stuart Maconie and Ian Rankin will be among the international writers, poets and artists involved in the 13th Birmingham Book Festival from 6 to 16 October.

Birmingham Cathedral will host Will Self on Thursday 13 October. His talk will include background to his latest novel Walking to Hollywood.

Tony Harrison - Britain's leading theatre and film poet - will make a rare appearance on Saturday 15 October to talk about his work which has included The Gaze of the Gorgon (awarded the Whitbread Prize for Poetry) and The Shadow of Hiroshima And Other Film Poems (awarded the William Heinemann Prize 1996).

Stuart Maconie,  TV and radio presenter, journalist, columnist and author, on 15 October will talk about his new book Hope and Glory which details his search for the places, people and events that have shaped modern Britain.

Birmingham Libraries presents a free evening with Ian Rankin on Wednesday 12 October at the Birmingham Library Theatre. The UK's number one best-selling crime writer will be talking about his work and new book, The Impossible Dead.

Festival Director Sara Beadle said: 'We are really excited about the line-up this year. We like to attract nationally and internationally known literary figures to Birmingham, but also ensure that we programme a diverse and original range of events to engage people in many forms with what reading and writing is truly about.'

Other events will include:  an all-night writing workshop at the Birmingham Museum's Collections Centre on Saturday 1 October; an innovative, international Dice Slam which will see eight poets from across the world battle it out for votes on Thursday 13 October; a whole festival day at Birmingham mac on Sunday 16 October which will include a screening of a Cannes Film festival winning film, Life Above All, from the novel by Allan Stratton who will be visiting Birmingham from Canada especially for the event, and a poetry party and open mic with Dutch slam legends Daan Doesborgh and Ellen Deckwitz..

The festival will also announce the new Birmingham Poet Laureate, have a dedicated bookshop within the Central Library, a free fringe festival in partnership with Birmingham Libraries and a specially commissioned sound installation Boy You Turn Me, situated in an empty shop in the Pavilions shopping centre.

For more information and to book tickets contact: 0121 446 3232 or or

The Birmingham Book Festival is organised by Writing West Midlands (WWM), the literature development and delivery agency for the region.

WWM has been selected by Arts Council England to become a National Portfolio Organisation (NPO) from April 2012.