THE organisers of SMARTFest 2012 are launching a literary festival in Stourbridge to celebrate the best town writers, illustrators and poets.

The event, which includes a literary competition and poetry slam, will take place on Friday August 10 at St Thomas’ Church in Market Street as part of the three-day SMARTFest event Stourbridge writers and broadcasters Dr Paul Collins and Graham Fisher MBE will open the event and Dr Collins will later host a creative writing forum to be recorded and broadcast on the town’s community radio station - 102.5 The ‘Bridge.

Comedy writer and cartoonist Geoff Tristram will also be appearing, along with Mick Pearson, editor of Blackcountryman magazine, and teacher Ian Dyer, author of So You Want To Be A Teacher, and Wall Heath historian/author Terry Church.

The literary festival was launched live on 102.5 The ‘Bridge from Mary Stevens Hospice Coffee Shop last Friday (April 20), In advance of the big day, the Coachhouse Writers Group has organised a free competition for aspiring literary stars and is inviting talented writers to enter by submitting a poem (of up to 40 lines) or piece of prose (up to 2,000 words) on any topic.

Prizes will be awarded for the best entries in each category.

A selection will also be read out at the festival in Mary Stevens Hospice Coffee Shop where the Coachhouse Writers will be taking up residence from midday till 2pm on August 10.

Submissions should be sent to SMARTFest PO Box 3968, Stourbridge DY8 5WR, or emailed to with the title Coachhouse Contest for Writers. The deadline for entries is midday on Saturday June 9.

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