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We have many ways to get involved with the festival in the months leading up to it! Whether you'd like to join a reading group talking about some of the books from authors that will be attending or whether you enjoy crafting, or would like to learn how to draw manga style, we've got some fun events for you!

My Manga Medway

Learn to tell your Medway stories in a manga style! We are working with House of Stars artist Nadia Perrotta to tell young people's stories of life in Medway now.

Nadia will help young people to make their own manga style illustrated stories of living in Medway which will form part of an exhibition and may also be collected into a book!
Suitable for ages 12-25.
Spaces are limited - so please RSVP and we will confirm your slot.


Dates: Saturdays - 3-4.30pm
Apr 15, 29

May 6, 20 

Venue: Cafenetics, 92 High St, Chatham ME4 4DS.

Find out more and book - email House of Stars

In association with Nucleus Arts and Cafenetics.

Manga illustration of a fox-girl

River Lit Readers

Would you like to read and talk about some of the books by authors who will be coming to the festival?

River Lit Readers is a reading group for all ages who would like to explore some of our authors' books in depth. We will be exploring four books, including a group specially for younger readers!  


Dates: Saturdays - 2-3pm

22 April at Gillingham Library - 'Foot Soldiers' by Nick Collins

Victorian England in the 1870s and the early years of the FA Cup. Pitches are little better than mud baths. Crossbars and referees' whistles don't exist, while the players all charge around in a rough-and-tumble manner more suited to rugby. But one side dares to be different. Combining silky skills with military muscle, they pass the ball in a spectacular new style of play. And they have a team spirit like no other - they are the Royal Engineers! 

'Hugely entertaining.'


In association with Medway Libraries

Book via 01634 337799 / 

You can order these books from Medway Libraries.

Cover of Foot Soldiers by Nick Collins


In association with Unravel and Unwind, we are running some crafting workshops/sessions where we will be making objects inspired by some of the books by authors coming to the festival.


In River Lit Craft-along we will hear extracts from some of our featured books, then explore a craft. Have a go at embellishing a bag with wax fabric and printing inspired by Patience Agbabi's Leap Cycle (17 April); and be inspired with paper craft to accompany Fumio Obata's graphic novel Just So Happens about Japan (22 May).  

Dates: Mondays, 6-9pm - 17 April + Mon 22 May

Venue: Unravel and Unwind, 57 Green St, Gillingham ME7 1AE

Suitable for all ages, please note, the venue is upstairs with no lift. 


FREE, but spaces are limited, to book, please email 

A woolen tapestry in shades of blue, with beads.

Fun with Words

Sam Rapp the Dyslexic Poet will lead a series of her popular writing workshops for families with young children, during the run-up to the festival. 

Thursday 20 April - Strood Library - 4.15-5.15pm
Thursday 18 May - Rochester Library - 4.15-5.15pm

Free. Please book with Medway Libraries
01634 337799 /

Photo of a writing workshop
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