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Miriam Calleja

Poet, Wordsmith, Medical Writer.
Crafting Words that Connect.

ConnectAbout Me

About Miriam

Miriam Calleja is the bilingual author of poetry collections Pomegranate Heart (EDE Books, 2015) and Inside Skin (a two-book series in collaboration with a lith photographer, EDE Books 2016). During the pandemic, her long poem ‘Remember’ was recorded and published as a memento of these times. It was presented during Versopolis: Festival of Hope online. The collaborative work Luftmeer (2021) was published in Maastricht, Holland.

Her most recent poetry chapbooks are Stranger Intimacy (Stamparija Reljic, 2020) and Come Closer, I Don’t Mind the Silence (BottleCap Press, 2023).

She has been published in several journals and poetry anthologies worldwide, and her work has been translated into Italian, Arabic, Slovene, Greek, Romanian, French, German, Norwegian, and Frisian, among others.

Her work has been published in translation in the collection Wara Settembru (2018, Slovene Writers Association) and in the collection Anthology of Young Maltese Poets (Vakxikon, 2019).

She is from Malta but currently lives in Birmingham, Alabama, where she regularly facilitates creative writing workshops. She has read at events in Malta, Berlin, UK, Italy, Germany, San Francisco, Alabama, and New York.

In 2022, two of her poems placed 1st in competitions in Alabama State – Alabama State Poetry Society and Alabama Writers Cooperative.

In 2021 she was a featured poet at the Malta Mediterranean Literature Festival after featuring in the online version in 2020. In 2021 she represented Malta in the hybrid festival Transpoesie. In 2020, she was also a guest at the Shamrock Festival for women poets (Munich) and online at Versopolis Festival of Hope – here and here.

Miriam is a co-founder and the Vice President of the voluntary organisation PEN Malta, a centre for freedom of expression and promotion of literature.

In 2018 her poem was longlisted for the Troubadour International Prize.

In 2018 she received an honourable mention for the national poetry competition Mons. Amante Buontempo.

In 2017, the Network of Young Women Leaders recognised her as a leading female artist in Malta.

In 2015 she was shortlisted for a literary excellence award for her poem ‘Burying the Dark’, which has been published in an anthology by Magic Oxygen in the UK.

She hosts regular creative writing workshops at the O’Neal Library in Mountain Brook, Birmingham, AL.

Miriam is also a medical writer who wrote the book COVID19 and the Virus that Shook the World (Oppian Press, 2020).

Miriam believes that poetry and prose are tools for storytelling that encourage unity. She has great faith in collaboration as a key to communication.

Download Miriam’s CV: Miriam-Calleja-Shaw-Resumé-Jan2023


I would like to show my gratitude for your work and for the methods that you used to teach the best skills for the said sessions. They were very interesting that one can have to learn and even developing his talents.
I appreciate very much your dedication especially when reading is one of the most important tools in today's world although I sometimes I cannot find time to do this.
- JM

Workshops with Malta Libraries

I've participated in Miriam's 'writing at your own pace' workshops and I highly recommend them to anyone whose looking for an extremely flexible workshop that allows you to write in your own time. Miriam is a great host, whose prompts are both educational and creative. They're fun and they allow you to explore fascinating topics and write about them in unexpected ways. Miriam's feedback is helpful and comprehensive, and her suggestions are spot on. I can't recommend these workshops enough - especially for people who are on busy schedules and need the flexibility. - MH

'Write at Your Own Pace' workshops

Attended my first course today and was more than happy with the outcome! Thoroughly enjoyed and would recommend to anyone with an interest in writing! - GB

Themed Creative Writing Workshop

This course was one which definitely motivated me to write and pushed me out of my comfort zone as to also practice reading my work aloud / performing it. Miriam's course was varied: prompts, learning about different poetry forms/structures, performing poetry, editing our work, and therefore, just gave the perfect dose of everything!... I would definitely recommend such workshops to any poetry person! - JB

Poetry Course

Interesting course for writers of all levels. Stimulating exercises and valuable advice from a professional with a lot of passion for what she does.
Recommended! - AU

Poetry Course

Image credit: Zvezdan Reljic


Medical Writing

Several Health-related articles: Portfolio
COVID19 and the Virus that Shook the World (Oppian Press, 2020).

Poetry Collections

Pomegranate Heart (EDE Books, 2015)
Inside (as part of Inside Skin; EDE Books, 2016)
Stranger Intimacy (Stamparija Reljic, 2020)


Call the Sea a Poet: Modern Poetry in Translation (MPT, UK, August 2023)
Awarded Writers’ Collection
(Alabama Writers’ Cooperative, 2022. Ed. T.K. Thorne)
Incontri Incrociate
(Mosaique Press, 2022)
Cross-Currents Curente La Rascruce (Mosaique Press, 2022)
Leħen il-Malti (Għaqda tal-Malti; għadd nru 40, 2021)
Leħen il-Malti (Għaqda tal-Malti; għadd nru 39, 2020)
Chaos (Poetry on the Wall Press, 2019)
Leħen il-Malti (Għaqda tal-Malti; għadd nru 38, 2019)
Magic (The Gloucestershire Poetry Society, 2019)
The Black Rose (EDE Books, Editor David Pisani, 2019)
Paġna Mmarkata nru. 2 (editor Paul Grech, 2019)
Blue Nib (Edition no. 37, 2019)
For the Silent (Indigo Dreams Publishing, 2019)
Tales from Prickly End (Hedgehog Poetry Press; issue 2, 2018)
Persona Non Grata
(Fly on the Wall Poetry Press, 2018)
Leħen il-Malti
(Għaqda tal-Malti; għadd nru 37, 2018)
Wara Settembru (11 poems translated from English to Slovene)
Poetic Potatoes (1 poem translated from Maltese to English and Frisian)
Please Hear What I’m Not Saying (the poem ‘I once loved something dark’)
Magic Oxygen Literature Prize 2016 (the poem ‘Burying the dark’)


Proximate Postcards I

Feral Women of the Deep South, Birmingham, August 2023 – with photographer Charity Rachelle

Online / In Print Magazines

Three poems on  platform review
Poetry selection here and here in Mediterranean Poetry
Disaster in Celebrating Change.
‘I hide’ was published in Poets Katze edition 1, with a translation in German by Karin Fellner.
‘A familiar map’ published in The Writer’s cafe Magazine (Issue 16 ‘Landscapes and Maps’, 2019)
‘Narċis’ is recorded for the Poetry Sound Library
‘Pomegranate Heart and other poems’ published in The Poethead
‘Lost in the Zoo’ was published in Sentinel Quarterly
‘You are my island’ (short version) published in The Fringe Magazine
Several poems from Inside Skin published on The Sunday Times of Malta
‘We become strangers’ published on The Bleeding Typewriter
‘8.04pm’ published by Candlestick Press as a Highly Commended poem in the Cloud poem competition

Things I can do for you


Check my portfolio with writing samples. Medical and health writing, content writing, ghost writing, collaboration with artists, theatre/film directors or businesses.

My ebook COVID19 and the virus that shook the world.

Creative writing workshops

Hone into your writing skills through exercises, prompts, and deadlines. Learn how to prepare pieces for submission. Groups are kept small to maintain intimacy.
Writing workshops can also be organized as an entertainment activity or ice-breaker in corporate settings. Access downloadable workshops here.


A proofreading service for English and Maltese text with an emphasis on precision and quality. Miriam is a Maltese proofreader certified by the Faculty of Arts, University of Malta.

Areas of specialisation include literature, healthcare, medicine, and food.

Performance / Entertainment

Performing of text, reading or acting in Maltese or English.

In conjunction with literary consultancy for your text, Miriam has experience with performing narratives, designing text to entertain (e.g. during dinners and soirèes) or educate (e.g. during site visits or journeys).

Events & Blog

scrabble tiles that read: Do The WorkEditingPoetryWorkshops
May 14, 2024

To begin with, how do you write?

Join my poetry editing workshop on Wednesday, May 29th, 2024, at The O'Neal Library “I write in loosely held journals that are full of phrases, stick figures, and stray thoughts…
assorted color pensPoetryWorkshopsWriting
March 8, 2024

NEW: April Writing Challenge

Join me this April, National Poetry Month, for a writing challenge that will have you respond to a prompt a day for 30 days! How does it work? I've created…
PoetryPublished poetrytranslationWriting
December 11, 2023

Translation ‘backbone’ Highly Commended by Stephen Spender Trust

My translation backbone was Highly Commended for the prize and will be published by the Stephen Spender Trust in 2024! I recently sent a translated poem from my work-in-progress to…
November 2018
The Garsdale Retreat
Yorkshire Dales, UK
27th October 2018
Orfeo and Majnun
6th September 2018
Poetry Reading
Villa Frere, Pietà
2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th June 2018
No Man’s Land
Grand Harbour / Marsamxett Harbour
February - July 2018
Creative writing workshops
Various Locations - Malta/Berlin

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