AP Writers and Translation Annual conference was held between 17th to 20th July at the Arts House (Old Parliament House), Singapore. There were more than 100 writers came from many different parts of the world to learn, to read, to inspire, and to proudly launch their books/poems.
It was a really heartfelt opportunity and an excellent chance to meet inspiring writers. It was such a wonderful event which I noticed that we were coming from a big close-knit family.
There were different programs which some had to happen simultaneously with another program. There were key note addresses, panel discussions, creative writing workshops, literary walk, and book launching.
Attending a panel called “What women in Asia write about?” was a rare privilege for me. Along side me, there were 4 other women writers from Pakistan, India, and Melbourne, Australia. I bet they are not only writers but also feminists, to me. It was an amazing time to sit on the table to talk with attentive audiences who are already well-known writers in their region.
We were inspired from all the key notes address. Suchen Christine Lim, a well-known Singaporean author led participants to stand up against and expressed our disappointment on the National Library Board’s recent decision to remove various children books. Merlinda Bobis, an Australian-Filipino writer moved us through a theme address on “Border Lover in Uncertain Times: Story-Making Across Cultures, Languages, and Literary Forms”.
Book launch was a great opportunity for writers to introduce and read their published books to audience. It was when people can buy their books directly and with their signature and compliments.
Next year, the same conference will be hosted at the Philippines. I wish Cambodia will have more than one writer to attend.
The conference was successful due to the big effort of Jane Camens, executive director of the AP Writers and Translations and many others, and wonderful local volunteers.