For writers, illustrators and people who like story-telling in Birmingham, there are some great venues and organisations:
Writing West Midlands is a new literature development agency for the West Midlands. For anyone interested in writing -including children- this is a great place to start. Their website has lots of information about local events, projects and organisations.
Birmingham Book Festival, now part of Writing West Midlands, takes place each October, with additional fringe events throughout the year.
There is also a thriving children's writers and illustrators' group, meeting in central Birmingham as part of the national and international SCBWI. If you are interested, please contact Donna Vann or me, J Clare Bell from SCBWI's Central West Region.
mac (The Midlands Art Centre) is a fantastic arts venue, set in the lovely Cannon Hill Park in South Birmingham. It is reopening on May 1st 2010.
artsfest, which takes place throughout the centre of Birmingham, is Europe's biggest free arts festival. The variety of arts event is amazing and in 2009 we got the world record for the most people dancing Bhangra at any one time, and for the longest time -brilliant but exhausting!
There are lots of interesting art and craft events for children at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, and The Ikon Gallery.
And the Kitchen Garden Cafe in Kings Heath, Birmingham hosts regular storytelling evenings and poetry readings.