Bad Language at Mirrors Festival

mirrorsposterBad Language is off to London. We’re running the literature stage at Mirrors Festival in Hackney.

It’s our first London event and Eddie Argos of Art Brut will be our special guest alongside a stack of other great performers. We last hosted Eddie on a spoken word tour of the UK. His memoir I Formed A Band has a foreword by Black Francis. It’s a delight to welcome Eddie back to a Bad Language stage.

Mirrors Festival, which takes place on October 29, also features Bat For Lashes, Fucked Up, Bill Ryder-Jones and loads more. Latest line-up information here.

Saturday 29 October 2016 7pm to 11pm at Paper Dress Vintage, Mare Street, Hackney Central. Mirrors tickets available here.

Bad Language at the Royal Exchange


We’re back at the Royal Exchange, presenting an hour of inspiring spoken word for their Special FX series.

Fridays in the theatre’s Great Hall feature happy hour drinks and free entertainment, spanning comedy, music and poetry. Bad Language’s Special FX starts at 6pm on Friday September 23 with Happy Hour at the bar running from 5.45pm to 7pm.

We four brilliant writers to the Royal Exchange: Birmingham / Manchester performance poet Ella Otomewo who was featured on 1Xtra’s Words First; writer Jasmine Chatfield who hosts Flim Nite and is part of the Stirred feminist collective; Lily Beck who features in the Centre for New Writing’s Manchester Anthology 2016, and Jake Kraweckyj, a man once called “the perfect mix between Alan Bennett and Alan Partridge”.

And to top it all, entry is completely free.

Friday 23 September 2016 6pm at The Royal Exchange, Cross Street, Manchester. Free admission.

Bad Language in September: Neil Campbell

Our open mic names this month are: Anna Percy, Chris Bainbridge, Dan Parr, Fionna Allen, Gloria Dawson, Harry Jelly, Lewi Martin, Lisa Luxx, Mark G & Naomi Sumner.

campbell_neil_mediumThis month’s headliner is Manchester writer Neil Campbell. He has written short story collections (Broken Doll, Pictures From Hopper), poetry collections (Bird, Bugsworth Diary), a short fiction chapbook (Ekphrasis) and a Nightjar book (Jackdaws). If that’s not enough, he has also appeared in Unthology (Bad Language headliners at the start of this year), Stockholm Review and Best British Short Stories.

For his debut appearance at Bad Language, we’ll be celebrating Neil’s first novel Sky Hooks (Salt). It’s not published until later in October, but we will have exclusive copies for sale on the night.

Praise for Neil’s previous work: “A vital writer, in touch with people and the natural and constructed worlds around us,” says Nicholas Royle. “The dialogue is note perfect and has a studied, savage banality,” says Paul Magrs. “Stories… as eerie and lonely as any Hopper painting,” says Nuala Ní Chonchúir.

Wednesday 28 September 2016 7.30pm at The Castle pub, Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Join the Facebook event now.

Manchester Literature Festival: Henry Normal, Melissa Lee-Houghton, Mark Pajak & Genevieve L Walsh


We’re back at the MANCHESTER LITERATURE FESTIVAL with an exciting evening of new poetry featuring poet, screenwriter and Manchester Poetry Festival founder HENRY NORMAL.

Henry returns to poetry after a glittering career in television comedy bringing us the likes of The Royle Family and The Mighty Boosh; his seventh collection, Staring Directly at the Eclipse, offers poems about death, human frailty and other classic conversation stoppers. The Scotsman called him ‘the Alan Bennett of poetry.’

He will be joined by three other poets: MELISSA LEE-HOUGHTON won a 2016 Northern Writers’ Award, was shortlisted for a 2016 Forward Prize and named a Next Generation Poet in 2014 by the Poetry Book Society; she has published two collections. MARK PAJAK’s poetry won a 2016 Northern Writers’ Award and was shortlisted for a Bridport Prize; his pamphlet Spitting Distance will be published in late 2016. GENEVIEVE WALSH is a fixture of the Yorkshire spoken word scene, and a member of the poetry performance group A Firm of Poets.

Saturday 8 October 2016 7.30pm at International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Cambridge Street, Manchester. Details on the MLF site here. Direct ticket link here.

Edge Hill launch: Jon McGregor, Zoe Lambert and Rachel Trezise

Bad Language & EHUP Present: Jon McGregor, Zoe Lambert & Rachel Trezise

We celebrate ten years of the Edge Hill Short Story Prize at the Portico Library, as we team up with Edge Hill University Press to launch of the Head Land anthology.

Jump straight to the ticket link for this event.

Starring at this very special event on September 29 is:

> Jon McGregor, author of This Isn’t the Sort of Thing That Happens To Someone Like You and the IMPAC Dublin Literature Award-winning Even the Dogs, and editor of the literary journal The Letters Page. His new novel Reservoir 13 will be published by 4th Estate in Spring 2017.

> Zoe Lambert, author of The War Tour, founder of cult Manchester literature night Verberate, and member of the board of the Northwest Short Story Network. She is an active campaigner for the rights of asylum seekers and her her fiction has appeared in Lamport Court, Bracket and The Independent on Sunday.

Rachel Trezise, author of the International Dylan Thomas Prize-winning short story collection Fresh Apples, and In And Out Of The Goldfish Bowl. Her debut full length play Tonypandemonium was staged by National Theatre Wales in 2013 and published in Bloomsbury’s Contemporary Welsh Plays in 2015.

Head LandHead Land features writers nominated for the Edge Hill Short Story Prize. The stories explore the domestic and the fantastic, the past and the present in writing that is sometimes funny, sometimes tragic, but always brilliant.

Pioneered by Edge Hill to spotlight excellence in the short story form, the Prize attracts established writers competing alongside relative newcomers, showcasing fresh, compelling work from the finest single-author collections published in the UK and Ireland.

We are proud to be bringing this launch the the unique and thrilling Portico Library. Tickets are on sale now. There will be a cash bar at the event.

Thursday 29 September 2016 7pm at The Portico Library, Mosley Street, Manchester. Join our Facebook event hereDirect ticket link here.

Bad Language in August: Anna Chilvers


We’re delighted to welcome Not The Booker longlistee ANNA CHILVERS to Bad Language this August.

Anna Chilvers is a writer, a runner, a long distance walker, a mother, a teacher and a reader. Her first novel, FALLING THROUGH CLOUDS, was published by Bluemoose in 2010. She has also published a collection of short stories, LEGGING IT (Pennine Prospects, 2012) and her play, THE ROOM was performed in the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival 2013. She has written another novel, TAINTED LOVE and is currently working on a collection of poetry as well as beginning novel number three. She teaches writing for the WEA and works with other groups of young writers and adults.

Anna was Writer in Residence for the Watershed Landscape project and worked on the Stanza Stones project with Simon Armitage, as well as with iMove on Wordstones and Words and Walking. She is particularly interested in the links between writing, walking and the landscape. She is a member of the Elmet Trust and organises the Ted Hughes Festival, The Elmet Poetry Prize and the Ted Hughes Young Poets Award. Anna has worked extensively with bookgroups and has run the 646 Book Club for ten years.

We have ten open mic spaces available – those requests are already fast coming in. Details here.

Wednesday 31 August 2016 7.30pm at The Castle pub, Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. 

Bad Language in July: Wyl Menmuir


Open mic spots are now available for Bad Language in July.


This month’s Bad Language is on July 27 at The Castle in Manchester

Our headliner is Salt Publishing’s WYL MENMUIR. He’s a Stockport lad living in Cornwall and his debut novel is The Many. He’s a freelance editor and literacy consultant, and when he’s not writing, you’ll find him out on the water or up on the cliffs – anywhere there’s a view of the sea.

“Ominous, subtle and beautiful – an intensely resonant trawling of suffering’s deep currents.” — Michael Marshall Smith on The Many

We have ten 4-minute open mic places, the performers of which are David Scott, Kate Feld, Karl Lagen, Marli Roode, Jimbo Agogo, Lily Beck, Omar Malas, Phil Olsen, Alice Spencer & Lucie Apampa.

Wednesday 27 July 2016 7.30pm at The Castle pub, Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. 

Join our Facebook event here