The Young Writers Collective is Open for Signups


Are you a poet, spoken word artist or writer aged 16-25 and living in London? Are you interested in connecting with other young creatives and being part of a new South East London writers’ collective who’ll be creating work for the 2024 Deptford Literature Festival? We want to hear from you! Spread the Word is looking for young people to become part of a new Young Writers Collective. 

If you’re new to writing / poetry or spoken word, or if you already have a bit of experience under your belt, Young Writers Collective is for you! Sign up to take part by Sunday 14 January 2024.  

What you’ll get by taking part

  • Meet other young people interested in writing

  • Learn new techniques to improve your poetry, writing and performance skills 

  • Become more confident in your voice as a poet, writer or spoken word artist

  • Become part of a supportive creative community 

  • Work with professional writers and get an insight into having a creative career

  • Have your voice heard

  • Have fun and make new connections 

  • Have the opportunity to get your voice heard and take part in the 2024 Deptford Literature Festival

Who is it for?

The Young Writers Collective is for young people who: 

  • Are interested in creating poetry, spoken word or stories

  • Want to get their voices heard about issues that matter to them

  • Are just starting out, or are already being creative with words and performance

You’ll need to be aged 16-25 and live in London. As we’re based in Deptford in Lewisham, we’re especially interested in young creatives living in Lewisham, Bromley, Greenwich or Southwark becoming involved in the Collective.

Who’s involved and what will you be doing? 

You’ll be working with amazing writers Remi Graves and Kareem Parkins-Brown to develop your creative work, as well as connecting with other young creatives to decide how you would like to present your work at the Young Writers Collective event at the 2024 Deptford Literature Festival.

When does it take place?

The Young Writers Collective sessions will run on Thursdays from 25 January to 21 March 2024, 6pm-7.30pm. The first 4 events are online, and the remaining sessions will be in-person at The Albany (pizzas and refreshments will be provided!). The Festival event will take place on Saturday 16 March 2024 in the afternoon at Deptford Lounge.

Online session dates: Thursday 25 January, Thursday 1 February, Thursday 8 February and Thursday 22 February 6pm – 7.30pm

In-person session dates: Thursday 29 February, Thursday 7 March and 14 March 6pm – 7.30pm 

In-person event: Saturday 16 March 2023 – Deptford Literature Festival

Post-Festival in person session: Thursday 21 March 6pm-7.30pm

How do I get involved?

If you’d like to become part of the Young Writers Collective, please sign up using this Google Form link by Sunday 14 January 2024:

If you’re under 18, we’ll need to have permission from your parents/ carers for you to take part. Please do let them know you’re interested in taking part before you fill out the form.

We’ll be back in touch with you by Tuesday 16 January 2024 to let you know about your place. 

About Remi Graves and Kareem Parkins-Brown

A picture of a black man with a wide smile wearing a black beanie hat Kareem Parkins-Brown is a writer and visual artist. He is a proud northwest Londoner and Barbican Young Poet alumnus. He’s won the Roundhouse Poetry Slam and been shortlisted for Young People’s Laureate for London and the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship. His work concerns nostalgia, grief, surrealism and hood life circa 2005 – present day. He is happiest when watching Mean Girls or Carlito’s Way. His forthcoming pamphlet will be coming out with Bad Betty Press in 2024. 

Kareem says: “You should take part in Young Writers Collective because you’ll A) foster community and B) develop / discover what makes you unique as a writer (and have a lot of fun while doing it) These two things will carry you through the rest of your journey.”

a black woman with cropped hair wearing a bright yellow jumper standing against a white wallRemi Graves is a London based poet and drummer. A former Barbican Young Poet, their work has been featured on BBC Radio 4, at St Paul’s Cathedral and in various anthologies. Past commissions include ‘don’t text me, i’m dreaming’ for Apples and Snakes and ‘On Breathing’ for Barbican. Remi has led courses at The Poetry School and facilitates in schools and community spaces around London. They have performed at Cheltenham Literature Festival, Tate Modern and more. Remi’s debut pamphlet with your chest was published in 2022 by fourteen poems.

Remi says: “Writing in community is one of the best ways to challenge yourself and your writing, whilst making wonderful friendships and connections. Join the Young Writers Collective if you want to develop your craft with a group of like minded people!”

Access and finances

If you need financial support to take part, for example you need your travel costs covering, need funds to buy data to help you make the online sessions, or if you need access support if you have an illness or disability, we’ll be able to support you with what you need to take part.

After Deptford Literature Festival 

After the Festival, we’ll work with the Young Writers Collective on what the group would like to do next.

If you have any questions about the Young Writers Collective, please get in touch on: [email protected]

Published Wednesday 29 November 2023