Netherlands literary scene – December

Here’s our rundown of upcoming international literary events in The Netherlands for December 2018 and beyond. Events are in English unless otherwise noted. Most ask that you register; some require tickets.

  • Birds with Words – an open mic night for women, trans and non-binary performers on Saturday, 1 December at the Vondelbunker, Amsterdam
  • A day on the essay film: visual erosions, sprouting words – this two-part programme includes a discussion on the literary roots of the essay film and screenings on Sunday, 2 December at Perdu, Amsterdam Note: A small portion of this event will be in Dutch
  • Open Mic Monday – poetry, music and stories inEnglish, Dutch and French, new performers welcome, 3 December, 20:30, Labyrinth, Amsterdam
  • Knock Knock – Amsterdam –  an evening of poetry, spoken word, music and food, on Friday, 7 December, 19:15 at Volta, Amsterdam
  • VERSO – an evening of poetry, music, film & discussion with Amsterdam’s live literary & art journal on Sunday, 9 December, 19:00 at Mezrab, Amsterdam
  • When icicles hang by the wall – winter and Christmas poetry – seven centuries of seasonal poetry, Monday, 10 December, 19:30 at Waterstones, Amsterdam
  • Open Mic Monday – poetry, music and stories in English, Dutch and French, new performers welcome, 10 December, 20:30, Labyrinth, Amsterdam
  • Int’l open stage – an open mic night with poetry, stories, songs and more in whatever language you want on the theme of ‘characters’ on Tuesday, 11 December, 21:00 at ACU, Utrecht
  • Papier Multiforme et Papier Comestible – a “performance of readership around magic, hands, and eyes” with two performances: Thursday & Friday, 13 and 14 December, 20:00 at Perdu, Amsterdam
  • ABC Open Mic – share your poetry or story on Friday, 14 December, 18:00 at the American Book Center, Amsterdam
  • Marilynne Robinson – the Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist will be giving the opening lecture of the 2018 Nexus Conference (the conference theme is the battle between good and evil) on Saturday, 15 December at the National Opera & Ballet, Amsterdam
  • Dickens Festival – this annual Christmas market brings over 950 Dickens characters to life on Saturday and Sunday, 15 – 16 December 2018 11.00-17.00 at the Bergkwartier, Deventer
  • Wole Soyinka – the Nobel Prize-winning poet, playwright and essayist will be one of the speakers at the 2018 Nexus Conference on Saturday, 15 December at the National Opera & Ballet, Amsterdam
  • Night of the Hidden Gems: Poetry & Story Telling Special – come share your poems or stories or just listen on Thursday, 20 December, 19:30 at Broedplaats ACTA, Amsterdam
  • Jessica DuLong – the award-winning American author and narrative nonfiction teacher will discuss how to stitch together characters, exposition, and scenes to reveal a panoramic event in all its complexity on Thursday, 20 December, 20:00 at the Pakhuis de Zwijger


  • ABC Open Mic – share your poetry or story on Friday, 11 January, 18:00 at the American Book Center, Amsterdam
  • Winter Reading, poetry and fiction by students and faculty of the International Writers’ Collective, Friday, 11 January, 20:00 at Boekhandel van Rossum, Amsterdam
  • Jennifer Clement, PEN International president and award-winning writer will be discussing her novel Gun Love, courtesy of the John Adams institute, Tuesday, 16 January (details TBA)
  • Winternachten Literature Festival – featuring poet Adam Zagajewski (Poland), novelist Jennifer Clement (US/Mexico) and writers from another 8 countries, 17-20 January at various locations in The Hague

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9 December 2018

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