[Sponsored] Taking place from Nov 4-13, the 2016 Singapore Writers Festival
will feature an international cast of more than 300 writers in a series of talks, workshops, readings, performances and more. Among them are some of Singapore’s brightest literary lights including Alfian Sa’at
and Sonny Liew
. Here are eight more you should know about.
A household name in Singaporean literature, Cyril Wong is known as a confessional poet whose work explores the themes of family, self-delusion, love, sexuality, disappointment and more. He's one of two poets who have won the Singapore Literature Prize twice.
Where to see him: Cyril Wong will participate in a trio of panel discussions—How to Write Loneliness (Nov 5, The Arts House), Canon-Making and Canon-Anxiety (Nov 9, The Arts House) and Politics of the Body (Nov 13, National Gallery Singapore).
A leading supporter of Singaporean poetry, Pooja Nansi has published poetry, edited poetry anthologies, curated poetry showcases and headed a platform for emerging poets. She was also one of the recipients of the 2016 Young Artist Award.
Where to see her: Pooja Nansi will be reading at If Music be the Food of Love, Play On! (Nov 4, The Arts House) and joining two panel discussions – Inculcating Reading Habits: Lessons from Around the World (Nov 6, The Arts House) and Children Born in the 1980s: Emerging Adulthood or Extended Adolescence? (Nov 13, Asian Civilisations Museum).
The Fiction Writers
Simon Tay has a jaw-dropping CV—among other things, he’s an Associate Professor of Law at NUS, he’s served as a Nominated Member of Parliament and he’s been described as “Singapore’s answer to Haruki Murakami”. His latest work, Middle & First Stories, follows up on the characters from his 1991 short story collection, Stand Alone.
Where to see him:
Simon Tay will join the discussion at What Makes a Story Singaporean?
(Nov 5, The Arts House).
A writer who’s been published in The Straits Times and the South China Morning Post, Clara Chow is also the co-founder of literary and art journal We Are a Website. Chow’s first short story collection, Dream Storeys, was inspired by interviews with architects, while her upcoming book features retellings of Greek myths.
Where to see her: Clara Chow will be reading at Emerging Singaporean Voices I (Nov 5, The Arts House) and will also be on the panel for The City and I (Nov 7, The Arts House).
Children’s Literature and Young Adult Writers
Prolific author Adeline Foo has published 27 books, including the series The Diary of Amos Lee from 2009 to 2016. Her books can be found in countries as far afield as Slovakia and Turkey, and she’s currently adding to her screenwriting credits with a documentary and a new children’s TV series.
Where to see her: The writers behind two famed fictional characters meet at Jaqueline Harvey & Adeline Foo: When Alice-Miranda Meets Amos Lee (Nov 6, Empress Lawn) while Adeline Foo and Stephanie Wong Present Weird and Wonderful Creatures (Nov 12, Empress Lawn) promises fun for the whole family.
One half of the mother-daughter team behind the popular Danger Dan children’s book series, Lesley-Anne Tan became a published author at the age of 16. She’s currently working on a new Danger Dan and Gadget Girl series while studying at Yale-NUS.
Where to see her: Lesley-Anne Tan is part of the panel for Singapore through Their Eyes (Nov 10, The Arts House) and will offer writing tips at Write This Way: A Guide for Teens by Teens (Nov 13, Empress Lawn).
The Rising Stars
A lawyer by trade with credentials from Harvard and Cambridge, Amanda Chong does her writing during lunch breaks. Her first collection of poetry, Professions, will be launched during the festival.
Where to see her: Amanda Chong will join the panel discussion Does Singapore Need a Poet Laureate? (Nov 8, The Arts House), launch her new book at A Book of Professions (Nov 12, The Arts House) and read at Emerging Singaporean Voices II (Nov 13, The Arts House).
Imran Hashim is a Francophile who studied French at university and eventually received a postgraduate scholarship from the French government. It’s no surprise then that Paris is the setting for his debut novel, Annabelle Thong.
Where to see him: Pick up a copy of his new book at the Epigram Books Fiction Prize 2015 Longlist book launch (Nov 12, The Arts House), join him for the panel discussion Accessible Does Not Mean Easy (Nov 12, The Arts House) and hear him read his work at Emerging Singaporean Voices II (Nov 13, The Arts House).
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