Writing West Midlands announces Shantel Edwards as new Creative Producer for Birmingham Literature F

Press Release

Monday 9 December 2019

For immediate release

Writing West Midlands, the literature development agency for the West Midlands region, has appointed Shantel Edwards as its new Creative Producer / Festival Director. Shantel will be working primarily on the Birmingham Literature Festival, the city’s flagship annual celebration of books and writers.

A Birmingham native and long time Birmingham Literature Festival audience member, Shantel joins Writing West Midlands after a career working within arts in higher education and completing her PhD in contemporary British literature at the University of Birmingham.

Jonathan Davidson, Chief Executive of Writing West Midlands, said:

“We are delighted to have Shantel join our team at Writing West Midlands and are looking forward to working with her. The insights and commitment to literature and to Birmingham and the region that she will bring will be enormously valuable to our work. And most importantly she is a reader and event-attender – the perfect combination for someone who will help make our future editions of the Birmingham Literature Festival.”

Shantel will now begin working with writers, venues, partner organisations, publishers and producers to programme and curate the 2020 Birmingham Literature Festival, which will take place in October in venues across the city. Publishers, agents and writers who would like to pitch their work are welcome to email programming@writingwestmidlands.org where Shantel will be delighted to hear more.

Shantel says:

“As a passionate reader, attending the Birmingham Literature Festival each year has always been a highlight of living in Birmingham for me.

“Through the years I have been able to listen to, and learn from, amazing authors such as Jackie Kay and Diana Evans, as well as discover new and emerging talent from my home city.

“I have been to festival events that celebrate new writing, as well as events that have created space for authors and audiences to discuss contemporary social issues such as feminism, race and gender and am keen to continue this tradition of recognising literature’s power to bring people together and create change within society.”

The Birmingham Literature Festival returns in October 2020. For full details of events, which will be announced in August 2020, see www.birminghamliteraturefestival.org.


For more information, to request images or to arrange an interview, please contact Olivia Chapman on 0121 246 2770 or 0778 605 1892 or olivia@writingwestmidlands.org.


Notes to editors:

Birmingham Literature Festival was established in 1998 to bring literature to the city and beyond. It is a project of Writing West Midlands, which is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation.

Writing West Midlands is the literature development agency for the West Midlands, supporting creative writers and creative writing. It offers support to help writers establish their writing careers. It supports young writers as they develop their interest in creative writing. It runs festivals and events, including the Birmingham Literature Festival and the annual National Writers’ Conference. It exists to champion the West Midlands region as a great place to be a writer.