Stormzy Launches #Merky Books Literature Festival

The new event will be headlined by Wretch 32, John Agard, and Malorie Blackman

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Stormzy – Photo: Courtesy of Wired PR
Stormzy – Photo: Courtesy of Wired PR

Stormzy has announced the launch of his inaugural #Merky Books literature festival, which will be held in London in April.

The MC launched his award-winning #Merky Books publishing imprint in 2018 in collaboration with Penguin Random House UK with the ambition of publishing books that will own and change the mainstream.

Following a pop-up held in 2019, Stormzy will now hold a two-day literature festival at London’s Roundhouse venue between April 22-23. Sponsored by Netflix, the event aims to demystify creative industries and inspire a new generation of creatives.

The #Merky Books literature festival will be free to attend and will showcase established authors alongside new voices. The program will also include a range of talks, workshops, and live performances and will cover not just literature but writing and storytelling across film and TV, music, and photography too.

The first day of the event will feature a panel discussion with Wretch 32 and John Agard, followed by an opening party hosted by Sounds by No Signal. The next day, former Children’s Laureate and author of the award-winning Noughts And Crosses series Malorie Blackman will be interviewed by Vick Hope.

Elsewhere Sophia Thakur, Monika Radojevic, Caleb Femi, and Yomi Sode will deliver spoken word performances, finance expert Bola Sol will hold a creative funding session, author Candice Braithwaite and playwright and screenwriter Theresa Ikoko will take part in a panel discussion exploring the theme of girlhood, and more. Attendees will be able to take part in workshops, masterclasses, and screenings, as well as career drop-in clinics held by Penguin Random House, #Merky Books, Netflix, and expert industry organizations.

“I’m so proud that we’re able to offer a free festival to inspire young creatives,” Stormzy said. “This is going to be our biggest event yet for #Merky Books.”

Lemarah Lindsay-Prince, senior commissioning editor for #Merky Books, added: “At #Merky Books, we are committed to breaking down barriers in the publishing industry and investing in the voices of today and tomorrow. We are incredibly excited to host our first-ever literary festival in partnership with Netflix and proud to put on an event that speaks directly to our core values – going even further to demystify the creative industries, empower a new generation of talent and offer an insight into the range of careers in the arts.”

Event passes will be available to sign up for from The Roundhouse website, with further sign-ups for workshops and masterclasses at the venue on the day.

Last week (February 24), Stormzy shared a new remix for his song “Hide And Seek,” featuring Rema. The original version of the song appeared on his critically-acclaimed third album, This Is What I Mean.

Buy or stream This Is What I Mean.

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