Mona Arshi was born in West London where she still lives. Mona was joint winner of the Manchester Creative writing poetry prize in 2014. Her debut collection ‘Small Hands’ won the Forward Prize for best first poetry collection in 2015.Her second collection is due to be published in 2019.
Gabriel Akamo is a Nigerian-British poet, actor, and creative producer based in London. He has been commissioned by St. Paul’s Cathedral and Royal Academy of Arts, and previous festival performances include Lovebox and Bestival. Drawing on his background in both theatre and Philosophy, his writing currently explores faith, relationships, and his overlapping identities.
Emily Berry is the author of two books of poems, Dear Boy (Faber & Faber, 2013) and Stranger, Baby (Faber & Faber, 2017). She is the editor of The Poetry Review and a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
Raymond Antrobus was born in London, Hackney. In 2018 he was awarded 'The Geoffrey Dearmer Prize'. He is the author of 'To Sweeten Bitter' and 'The Perseverance'. He is the recipient of fellowships from Cave Canem, Complete Works 3 and Jerwood Compton Poetry.
Bernardine Evaristo is the acclaimed, award-winning author of eight books of fiction and verse fiction, as well as short stories, essays, poetry, and more. Her new novel about black British women will be published by Hamish Hamilton/Penguin Random House, May 2019. She is a Fellow, and the Vice Chair, of the Royal Society of Literature, and an MBE.
Wayne Holloway-Smith's debut collection of poetry, Alarum, was published by Bloodaxe Books in 2017, was shortlisted for the Roehampton Prize and was a Guest Selection for the Poetry Book Society. He won the Geoffrey Dearmer Prize 2016. His non-linear sequence, I CAN'T WAIT FOR THE WENDING, will be published by Test Centre in 2018.
Rachel Long is a poet and leader of Octavia - Poetry Collective for Womxn of Colour, which is housed at Southbank Centre, London. She was awarded a Jerwood/Arvon Foundation mentorship in 2015. Rachel has run poetry workshops for The Poetry School, The Serpentine Galleries and at The University of Oxford.
LionHeart is a TEDx Speaker and an International SpokenWord Performer. He has been commissioned by Lloyds of London, the BBC, Gillette and more. He is the first Poet in Residence at The Building Centre, exploring Architecture & Poetry's relationship around emotional inhabitance, psychology and memory.
Vanessa Kisuule is currently the Bristol City Poet for 2018 - 2020. She has won over ten slam titles including The Roundhouse Slam 2014, and the Nuoryican Poetry Slam. She has been featured on BBC Woman's Hour, The Guardian, and more. Her one woman show SEXY toured in 2017/18 with support from Arts Council England.
Luke Kennard won an Eric Gregory Award in 2005 for his first collection The Solex Brothers. His second collection, The Harbour Beyond The Movie, was shortlisted for the 2007 Forward Prize for Best Collection, making him the youngest ever poet to be nominated. In 2014 he was named as one of the Poetry Book Society's Next Generation Poets. His debut novel, The Transition, was published by Fourth Estate in March 2017.The novel was a BBC Radio 4 Book at Bedtime.
Bridget Minamore is a writer, poet, critic, and journalist. She was shortlisted to be London's first Young Poet Laureate, has been commissioned by Nike, and the Tate Modern, and is part of the creative team behind Brainchild Festival. Bridget teaches poetry and drama workshops around the country, has read her work internationally.
Nikesh Shukla is the author of three novels. His latest is The One Who Wrote Destiny was released in Spring 2018. Nikesh has written for The Guardian, Observer, BBC Radio 4 and more. Nikesh is also the editor the bestselling essay collection, The Good Immigrant. He is the co-founder of the literary journal, The Good Journal and the Good Literary Agency.
Assumpta Vitcu is a London based British-Nigerian poet, writer and special event planner. Her work has been featured within Praxis Magazine and a number of publications such as MAIA Creatives, the Aké Review and POSTSCRIPT. Assumpta's work centers on love, loss, life-lessons and deracination. She is the poetry and features editor for The Book Banque.
Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian Poet and facilitator. She won the 2018 Brunel International African Poetry Prize and was shortlisted for the 2017 Bridport Poetry Prize. She performed at the unveiling of Millicent Fawcett’s statue at Parliament Square after being invited by the Mayor of London’s Office. She is currently working on her debut full length poetry collection.
Born in Nigeria in 1984, Inua Ellams is an internationally touring poet, playwright, performer, graphic artist & designer. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He is an ambassador for the Ministry of Stories and has published four books of poetry. His fourth play ‘Barber Shop Chronicles’ sold out its run at England’s National Theatre.