Singapore Writers Festival 2015
UK Writers at the Singapore Writers Festival ©

Singapore Writers Festival

Date
Friday 30 October 2015 - 11:30 to Sunday 08 November 2015 - 11:30
Location
Singapore

The British Council is presenting sessions with the following UK Writers at this year’s Singapore Writers Festival: Deborah Levy, shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize; Dylan Jones, journalist and editor of UK men’s GQ magazine; Heather McGregor (aka Moneypenny) the bestselling author of ‘Careers Advice for Ambitious Women’ and Robert Fairhurst, Professor of English Literature and Fellow of Magdalen College.

31 October, 1pm

Reading STORIES FROM ISLANDS, SONGS FROM ISLANDERS II

Featuring            Deborah Levy, Mieko Kawakami, Omar Pérez, Daren Kamali, Pooja Nansi
hosted by            Danny Yeo
Translated by     Motoyuki Shibata
Duration             1 hour
Venue                 TAH, British Council Gallery

What is unique about the literatures from islands: a sense of isolation? A strong unique identity? A special affinity to the rhythms of the seas? Writers from islands come together for a bonfire of words and music.

31 October, 5.30pm

Panel FEMALE POWER, DECONSTRUCTED

Featuring           Deborah Levy, Eleanor Wong
Moderated by    Michelle Martin 
Duration            1 hour
Venue                National Gallery, Auditorium

Multi-hyphenates, Deborah Levy and Eleanor Wong, write complex, multi-faceted women characters. They will read and have a conversation with 938LIVE ‘Talking Books’ host, Michelle Martin.

1 November, 4pm

SWF Lecture WHAT DREAMS REVEAL ABOUT OUR SECRETS AND DESIRES

Featuring             Deborah Levy
Moderated by      Carolyn Camoens
Duration              1 hour
Venue                 Victoria Theatre

Each morning in every family, men, women and children, if they have nothing better to do, tell each other their dreams. We are all at the mercy of the dream and we owe it to ourselves to submit its power to the waking state. – Andre Breton, 1924.

Dreams “tell us something we don’t want to know we know,” says Booker Prize nominee, Deborah Levy. Walk the dark side as she delves into the world of dreams, exploring twin desirous obsessions of need and want. She will share compelling excerpts from her short-story collection, Black Vodka, and the Man Booker shortlisted novel, Swimming Home.

7 November, 10am

Panel LITERARY PRIZES: BANE OR BOON

Featuring             Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, Gwee Li Sui, Mark Gevisser
Duration              1 hour 
Venue                 TAH, Kumon Blue Room

Are literary prizes relevant today? Most often, the naysayers bray that either the achievement does not warrant the commendation or the individual awarded should have been someone else. Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, who was a Man Booker Prize judge, Singapore Literature Prize judge Gwee Li Sui and South African author Mark Gevisser debate the topic.

7 November, 10am

Masterclass POP LIVES

Instructed by     Dylan Jones
Duration            3 hours
Venue               TMA, Hall

How do you access the lives of pop culture personalities like David Bowie, Jim Morrison and Elvis Presley? Participants will learn how to avoid cliches, hagiography and the traditional ways of writing biographies through a close study of the genre.  This masterclass includes a Q&A session and a writing exercise.

Suitable for: Writers with works published in journals.

Materials needed: Participants to bring an example or two of biographies that they think work. 

7 November, 5pm

SWF Lecture CAN WE HAVE IT ALL? WITH MRS MONEYPENNY 

Featuring            Heather McGregor 
Moderated by     TBC
Duration             1 hour 
Venue                 Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre, Summit 2

Former Financial Times Weekend columnist Mrs Moneypenny is of the opinion that women will only be average at everything if they try to excel at everything. PepsiCo CEO Indra K Nooyi has said that women can’t have it all. Are people starting to accept that “Supermom” is a myth? Whether you are an ambitious careerist looking to smash the glass ceiling, a stay-at-home mother or a supportive husband, this session is for you.

8 November, 10am

Workshop HOW TO WRITE A WEEKLY COLUMN BY MRS MONEYPENNY 

Instructed by      Heather McGregor
Duration             3 hours
Venue                TAH, Living Room

Heather McGregor aka Mrs Moneypenny is a triple threat: entrepreneur, columnist and TV presenter. She helmed a highly successful weekly column in the Financial Times for 16 years while juggling three children, a husband and her own business. How did she do it? She will share invaluable tips on how to craft and sustain a regular column that speaks to audiences. 

Suitable for: Aspiring journalists and bloggers 
Materials needed: Pen and paper

8 November, 11.30am

ROBERT DOUGLAS-FAIRHURST AND THE ETERNAL FASCINATION WITH ALICE IN WONDERLAND

Featuring             Robert Douglas-Fairhurst
Moderated by      Wai Yin Pryke (TBC)
Duration              1 hour 
Venue                  TAH, The Japan Foundation Play Den

An award-winning biographer, critic and Oxford lecturer, Robert Douglas-Fairhurst is known for his books, Becoming Dickens (2011) and The Story of Alice (2015), a biographical account of Lewis Carroll and the girl who inspired his most famous fictional character. In this session, Robert discusses the public’s long-lasting fascination with Alice in Wonderland, and why Victorian classics and fairy tales remain so popular in the 21st century.

8 November, 4pm

Panel THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY

Featuring            Dylan Jones, Avi Sirlin
Moderated by     Huzir Sulaiman
Duration             1 hour 
Venue                 National Gallery, Auditorium 

What price fame and obsession? Come cosy up in this session with writers Dylan Jones and Avi Sirlin who deconstruct the cult of personality surrounding such icons as Elvis Presley and naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace.

All the above  events are supported by the British Council.