About Us
The Mechanics’ Institute Review (MIR) is a forum for the most exciting new writing in short fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction.

ACADEmic Co-ordinator

Julia Bell


Wes Brown


Jack Glanfield & Alice Kidd


Summer Kendrick


Joey Barlow, Daisy Hillard & Ben Sorgiovanni

Social media

Joey Barlow & Emma Mosley


Holly Ashe

Jessica Brooke

Hugo Brown

Mara Girone

Alexandra Hesse

Sinead MacInnes

Sarina Meakin

Rosalie Van Onzenoort

Abhay Puri

Amy Ridler

Charmain Shaw

Hannah Webb


Joyita Raksit

Tim Bradford

Praise for the MIR Anthology

“Beautifully crafted tales of not fitting in and yearning for the other. Brilliant.” – Kit de Waal

“Really good stories, really well made. You don’t get better than that.” – Ali Smith

“An act of defiance” – TLS

“A fabulous collection.” – Kevin Barry

“Jolly good it is too – its graduates will go far” – Guardian

“These pieces are as energetic, diverse, as full of fascinating characters and intriguing stories as the city they were crafted in.” – Kerry Hudson

“The short story is alive and well and living at The Mechanics’ Institute Review.” – Eimear McBride

“Once again, MIR proves itself as a hotbed of fresh and original talent, laden with intriguing voices that urge you to turn the page. An annual treat for short-story lovers.” – Courttia Newland


Consisting of an online platform, a printed literary magazine and a series of creative writing events and career-developing opportunities, MIR is a contemporary magazine designed to represent the quality and diversity of the UK literary scene.

This site is managed by Project Director, Julia Bell, and Managing Editor, Peter John Coles, and maintained and edited by a rotating group of Birkbeck students, alumni and staff. Work is selected by an editorial committee which, consists of authors Toby Litt, Lawrence Illsley, Eleonora Rossi.

This platform is not just for Birkbeck College students and alumni. We want to hear from as many talented writers as possible from across the UK. This is your chance to have your work read by leading professional writers. Selected authors will be copy-edited, published online or invited to read their work at MIR Live events.

Birkbeck College was founded in 1823 by George Birkbeck and, on the 2nd of December, 2,000 people flocked to the Crown and Anchor Tavern on the Strand. Together, they witnessed Dr Birkbeck and his supporters launch London’s first ever Mechanics’ Institution dedicated to the education of working people. The Creative Writing MA at Birkbeck has developed a reputation for producing published writers of the highest artistic standard. MIR echoes our ethos of inclusion.