On Tuesday we celebrated the launch of our thirteenth anthology in the Keynes Library at Birkbeck.


Launch 01

The Mechanics’ Institute Review was launched in 2004 by Julia Bell and Sue Tyley as a way for Birkbeck’s Creative Writing MA students to experience the publishing industry. Now in its thirteenth year and created by a team of hard working volunteers, the anthology remains a refreshing collection of new fiction from Birkbeck’s creative writers, although things are set to change next year!

There have been some amazing guest authors over the years and this collection, introduced by Toby Litt, is no different, featuring work from Kit de Waal, Elizabeth Fremantle and Nadim Safdar.

Launch 02At the launch party last Tuesday we were treated to a glass (or several) of wine, some delicious canapés and a taste of what’s to be found inside the pages of this year’s wonderfully pink edition.

We heard readings from three of the authors in the collection. Stella Klein read from New Materiality, taking us inside an art classroom where a student fantasises about her teacher. Nadia Wassef showed us perspectives on a young Cairo Bride in What Hamdiyya Vowed. The final reader of the evening, Ian McNabb, presented two characters from his story Look Out who have very different ideas on the correct way to obtain a baby.

Launch 04It was good to see so many new MA and BA Creative Writing students at the launch party and we’re hoping that these students will be inspired to get involved with issue 14. In her introduction to Tuesday’s event, Julia gave the exciting news that next year’s anthology will be open to writers outside of Birkbeck and we’re all looking forward to finding some gems in this wider submission pool.

If you missed out on the fun on Tuesday, don’t worry! The MIR13 team will be hosting two more reading events where you can hear extracts from the anthology and buy your own copy. MIRLive, on October 24th, will be an anthology special and there will also be a reading at The Brick Lane Bookshop on November 7th.

Issue 13 of The Mechanic’s Institute Review is now available to purchase from Amazon and at future events.

Photos by James Wise and Vanessa Onwuemezi.

October 3, 2016

Pretty in Pink: MIR13 Launch Party

On Tuesday we celebrated the launch of our thirteenth anthology in the Keynes Library at Birkbeck.
September 29, 2016

Elizabeth Fremantle to read at MIRLive

MIRLive returns  on October 24th 2016 for an anthology special. We are joined by Elizabeth Freemantle, Melanie Jones, Aliyah Keshani, Melody Razak, Chris Lilly, John Forde and Claire Montell.
May 21, 2016

Being Dad Interviews

Melanie Jones speaks to authors Dan Powell, Toby Litt, Nikesh Shukla, and Courttia Newland  about Being Dad and the effects fatherhood has had on their writing
May 3, 2016

Birkbeck Arts Week

Birkbeck Arts Week, 2016 runs from Monday 16 to Saturday 21 May and the Creative Writing department will be hosting two events during Arts Week. These events will be complimented by MIRLive on May 13th and Birkbeck Poets on May 22nd.
May 2, 2016

MIRLive May 13th

Our first MIRLive will take place on May 13th 2016 and we are joined by Benjamin Wood, Nadim Safdar, Courttia Newland, Gilli Fryzer and Anne Rabbit.
April 13, 2016

Courttia Newland to read at MIRLive

Our first MIRLive will take place on May 13th 2016 and we are looking for readers to join Benjamin Wood and Courttia Newland.
April 1, 2016

Stefanie Seddon Shortlisted For Prize

Stefanie’s short story, Eel, has been shortlisted for the 2016 Commonwealth Short Story Prize, she tells us a about the inspiration behind the story.
March 18, 2016

The Writers’ Hub becomes MIR Online

Melanie Jones talks through the features of our brand-new website.
March 13, 2016

Birkbeck Poets

Birkbeck Poets join the events for Arts Week 2016.
February 29, 2016

Kit de Waal Scholarship at Birkbeck

A fully funded scholarship opportunity for a budding writer to hone their skills has been created at Birkbeck, University of London.
February 29, 2016

James Mitchell Wins Newcomer Prize

Birkbeck Alumnus, James Mitchell, has been awarded The Fiction Desk’s Newcomer Prize.
December 2, 2015

MIR13 Call For Submissions

    Once again we’re looking for high-quality writing to publish in The Mechanics’ Institute Review (MIR), Birkbeck’s critically acclaimed literary anthology.
November 2, 2015

Red Meat by Kate Whiteside

‘Red Meat’, by Kate Whiteside, was first published in MIR11, Kate also has a story in MIR12.
December 9, 2014

Paul McVeigh Comes to Hubbub

Hubbub will take place at The Harrison on February 29th and we are delighted to be joined by Paul McVeigh and Toby Litt. This will be the final Hubbub before we change over to MIRLive!
January 9, 2014

Interview with Alex Preston

Alex Preston has been commissioned by Birkbeck for a short story in our annual anthology, The Mechanics’ Institute Review (MIR). Here he discusses his short story and writing life with Kieran Falconer.