Spark Young Writers Groups

Booking is now open for Spark Young Writers Groups! All our groups are going to be held online using Zoom for the Autumn term. During this time we will be working to see when the groups can move to be held in person, but this will not be until January at the earliest.

Find your nearest Group here. If you have any questions, don’t forget to check out our FAQs.

Spark Young Writers groups are writing groups for children and young people interested in any kind of creative writing.

Spark Young Writers groups meet monthly from September to June/July (10 sessions a year), for 2 hours on a Saturday.

The cost is £90 for the year (£9 a session) and you can pay by annual card payment, BACS transfer, or monthly Direct Debit.

Groups are divided roughly into school years 3-6 (junior aged children), and school years 7-12 (secondary school aged children.)

Please contact the office if you would like to discuss other options for payment – we have a limited number of bursaries available for those in financial need. Please email Emma Boniwell if you would like more information.

Each group is: 

  • fun! We laugh a lot during the sessions
  • friendly and informal
  • small – max. 15 children
  • led by a professional writer along with an assistant
  • varied – your child will do all kinds of writing, from fiction to poetry to playwriting
  • working on creative writing rather than spelling or punctuation
  • a chance for your child to develop their creative writing 
  • a way to grow their confidence in their writing
  • not assessed – your child will get feedback and suggestions, but no “grades” or “attainment levels” are given
Image © Lee Allen.

To keep up to date with everything that is going on, including reminders about submission deadlines for our termly online magazine, you can sign up for the Young People and Schools mailing list.

For exact times and dates of each group, please see below.

If you have any questions about Spark Young Writers, please have a look at our Young Writers FAQs page.

There are occasional opportunities for group members to share their work at events for family members and friends as well as more public events. In previous years, members of the groups have shared their work at the Birmingham Literature FestivalLedbury Poetry FestivalCoventry Mysteries and Wenlock Poetry Festival. Several have also been involved in publications and regularly submit to Spark Young Writers Magazine. 

Birmingham

Birmingham City 1 (ThinkTank Museum) School years 3-6.
Birmingham City 2 (Birmingham & Midlands Institute) School years 7-12.
Birmingham City 3 (ThinkTank Museum) School years 5-8.
Bartley Green (Newman University) School years 3-6.
Edgbaston (Lapworth Museum of Geology, University of Birmingham campus) School years 7-12.

Black Country

Walsall (New Art Gallery Walsall) School years 5-9.
Wolverhampton (Wolverhampton Art Gallery) School years 7-12.

Worcestershire

Worcester (The Hive) School years 5-9
Kidderminster (Kidderminster Library) School years 7-12
Evesham (Evesham Library) School years 3-6

Herefordshire

Ledbury (Ledbury Library) School years 5-9

Warwickshire

Coventry (The Belgrade Theatre) School years 3-6
Leamington (Leamington Library) School years 7-12
Tamworth (Tamworth Library) School years 6-9
Rugby (Rugby Library) School years 5 – 9
Stratford (The Other Place) School years 7-13.

Stoke & Staffordshire

Stoke on Trent (Emma Bridgewater Factory) School years 6-9
Burton (Burton Library) School years 3-6

Shropshire

Telford (Oakengates Theatre) School years 3-7
Shrewsbury (Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery) School years 5 – 9.

Online only

Junior Online group  School years 3 – 7
Teens Online group  School years 7 –13.

School years and ages

Year 3 (age 7-8), Year 4 (age 8-9), Year 5 (age 9-10), Year 6 (age 10-11) – Key Stage 2

Year 7 (age 11-12), Year 8 (age 12-13), Year 9 (age 13-14) – Key Stage 3

Year 10 (age 14-15), Year 11 (age 15-16) – Key Stage 4

If you have any further questions about the Spark Young Writers’ Groups please have a look at our Young Writers FAQs page. If you have a question that isn’t on this list, please email emma[at]writingwestmidlands.org. If you would prefer to discuss the groups, you can call Emma on 0121 246 2770 (option 2).

Young Writers’ group Supporters

For more information about the supporters on sponsors of our Spark Young Writers’ Groups please click here.

Get Writing

If you’d like to submit a piece of your writing for possible inclusion in the magazine, please see the Get Involved page to see more details. This magazine is published online three times a year: summer (June/July), winter (October-December) and spring (February-April) terms.

Join a Group

With 22 groups across the West Midlands, including 2 online-only groups, there will be a Spark Young Writers group near you.

Groups are open to young writers aged 8-17 who are interested in any type of creative writing.

Follow our Story Starters

Updated weekly, our free story starters created by writers across the region will get you writing in new and exciting ways.

Watch our Get Creative! prompts

During lockdown in spring 2020, we asked professional writers to upload short clips of writing prompts you can do from home.