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Centre for New Writing

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Events at the Centre for New Writing

The Centre for New Writing organises the 'Literature Live' reading series, bringing the best known contemporary writers from all over the world to Manchester to discuss and read from their work.

In the past, we've hosted an impressive line-up of literary luminaries including Martin Amis, Colm Tóibín, Will Self, Sarah Waters, John Banville, Hilary Mantel, Neil Gaiman, Paul Muldoon, Rose Tremain and Hanif Kureishi.

Our Autumn 2018 events are now on sale. 

Tickets can be booked via Quaytickets or the Martin Harris Centre box office (+44 (0) 161 275 8951).

Upcoming events

Beth Underdown: Love makes as many

17:30 - 19:00 06 October 2018

1918, and some women in England have gained the right to vote. A few short weeks before the armistice, the shortage of cotton has brought a strange hush to Quarry Bank mill and the women who make their lives here. In the silence, their voices are suddenly loud: loud enough to be heard, even now, one hundred years on… Working with the Nation..

A Celebration of Muriel Spark: with Jackie Kay, Alan Taylor and Louise Welsh

19:30 - 20:45 09 October 2018

Muriel Spark chronicled human interaction with a scalpel and razor-sharp insight. Her writing examines the aspects of our lives we try to hide, the affect stories have on the way we live and the impact of religion, following her own conversion to Catholicism. To celebrate the centenary of Muriel’s birth, three writers discuss what made her..

Mohammed Hanif in Conversation

19:00 - 21:00 10 October 2018

Q: What do an American pilot who’s crashed in the desert, a teenager full of money-making schemes and a dog suffering through a very bad day have in common? A: They all narrate the new, hilariously funny novel, Red Birds, by acclaimed author Mohammed Hanif (A Case of Exploding Mangoes). Through the inhabitants of the refugee camp Major Ell..

Sarah Perry: Melmoth

19:00 - 21:00 11 October 2018

Melmoth is watching and she’s coming for the guilty. They can choose to live with what they’ve done or follow Melmoth into a life of wandering. Sarah Perry’s third novel is a haunting, Gothic tale of ordinary people making seemingly small decisions that lead to terrible consequences. Unnerving and unsettling, it gives the readers the sen..

Literature Live: Nick Laird and Sasha Dugdale

19:30 - 20:45 15 October 2018

Poet and novelist Nick Laird has won the Betty Trask Prize, the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He has recently published a poetry collection, Feel Free (Faber, 2018) and a fourth novel, Modern Gods (Fourth Estate, 2017). Writer-in-Residence at New York University, his BBC poem-documentary about the Troubles, The Li..

Literature Live: Jim Crace and Jenni Fagan

19:30 - 20:45 05 November 2018

Jenni Fagan is a novelist, poet and screenwriter. Listed as one of Granta's Best of Young British Novelists after her debut novel, The Panopticon, her second, The Sunlight Pilgrims, won her Scottish Author of the Year. She has been in lists for the IMPAC, Sunday Times Short Story Prize, BBC Short Story Award, Desmond Elliott, and the James Tai..

An Evening with Barbara Kingsolver

19:00 - 21:00 14 November 2018

‘We’re living through a scary historical moment when the most basic agreements about who we are as citizens, and how we’ll succeed in the world, are suddenly unravelling.’ Acclaimed American author of 15 books, Barbara Kingsolver’s new novel Unsheltered, uses the lens of the past to view where this unravelling might lead us. In 1871..

Poets in the Cities: Rita Ann Higgins, Ailbhe Ní Ghearbhuigh

19:00 - 21:00 19 November 2018

Rita Ann Higgins has published eleven books of poetry, including Tongulish (2016), Ireland Is Changing Mother (2011) and Throw in the Vowels: New & Selected Poems (2005), all from Bloodaxe, as well as her controversial memoir, Hurting God (Part essay, Part Rhyme) (Salmon, 2010). She is also a playwright and has recently written two short films..

16th Annual Rylands Poetry Reading with Marilyn Hacker

18:00 - 19:30 22 November 2018

Marilyn Hacker is the author of thirteen books of poems, including A Stranger’s Mirror (Norton, 2015), Names (Norton, 2010), and Essays on Departure (Carcanet, 2006), the essay collection, Unauthorized Voices (Michigan, 2010). Her translations of French, Francophone and Arabic poets appear regularly in PN Review and journals aroun..

Literature Live: Joe Dunthorne and Luke Kennard

19:30 - 20:30 26 November 2018

Joe Dunthorne’s first novel, Submarine, was translated into sixteen languages and adapted for film by Richard Ayoade. His second, Wild Abandon, won the 2012 Encore Award. The Adulterants, published earlier this year, was hailed by The Guardian as ‘brilliantly knowing’, and by the New Statesman as ‘a wickedly funny millennial Bildungsro..

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