January 16, 2015

Submit Your Writing to Banana Writers!

Use your individuality to produce writing that will resonate into the hearts and minds of readers. We want your writing to be fresh, exciting, thoughtful and valuable.
What type of writers are Banana Writers looking for?

Banana Writers is a platform for new East Asian / South East Asian (EA / SEA) writers to share their work. This includes people who are Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Singaporean, Malaysian, Thai and anyone with a background from an EA / SEA background. It does not matter to us whether you were born in Asia or the West or have never published anything before. What matters to us is entertaining writing that comes from the heart.

If you are not from an EA / SEA background and are interested in contributing, we are happy to review your work as long as it is relevant to EAs / SEAs.

Becoming a Banana Writer

Banana Writers is passionate about supporting EA / SEA writers from all mediums. We publish articles, short stories, novels, poems, songs, interviews, scripts and book reviews. We know how nerve-wrecking it can be to 'Put yourself out there,' so everything we receive is carefully read and considered. We will contact you if we would like to publish your work on the website. We receive submissions from all over the world so thank you very much for your patience. We aim to reply to everyone within 4 weeks. Books and scripts should receive a reply within 8 weeks. Through our website you are given the chance to share your writing with the world.

Send your pieces to: info@bananawriters.com

Apart from songs, scripts and full novels all work must be in a Word document.  It only edits articles.

December 27, 2014

"Suffering, Struggle, and Overcoming"



Julian Friedmann is a film, TV and literary agent and co-owner of the Blake Friedmann Literary Agency.  He's in the business of rejection.  In this thought-provoking talk, he reveals some storytelling secrets that captures and audience's attention.

How we tell stories seems to be a mysterious process that millions around the world want to be able to do, but 99.9% effectively fail. Why is it so hard for storyteller and audience to be one? What we communicate can change the lives of the writer and the audience. However, why stories matter and how to tell them better may not be as mysterious as it seems. Julian Friedmann has worked with writers for over 40 years; he believes understanding that storytelling is more about the audience than the writer will result in better storytelling.

Friedman puts it succinctly,  "(Beethoven’s) preference for ‘happy endings’ is not by any means a tendency towards kitsch, but rather a musical style akin to Schiller’s philosophy of suffering, struggle and overcoming.’
Beginning, pity, suffering
Middle, fear, struggle
End, catharsis, overcoming
You can see the pattern. This works because it is about the audience’s experiences, not the characters’ or – god forbid – the writer’s."

November 24, 2014

Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop Emerging Writer Award 2015

Press Release

ASIAN CANADIAN WRITERS’ WORKSHIP EMERGING WRITER AWARD GUIDELINES

2015—Fiction

The ACWW Emerging Writer Award (EWA) was established in 1999 to help authors of Pacific Rim Asian heritage be published with an established publishing house. The winner of the first award was poet, Rita Wong (Monkeypuzzle, published by Press Gang.) Madeleine Thien won the second award in 2001 for her short story collection, Simple Recipes. This manuscript impressed McClelland & Stewart so much that they offered Madeleine a two-book deal. Simple Recipes went on to win the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, the City of Vancouver Book Prize, and was a finalist in the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book.

The Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop is the publisher of Ricepaper Magazine and literASIAN: A Festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian Writing Festival. Formed in 1995, it was created out of a need to develop and nurture Pacific Rim Asian Canadian writers. Its primary purpose is to foster a community of writers and build a literature. In 2015, ACWW will celebrate its twentieth anniversary.

The ACWW Emerging Writer Award is a community building initiative of the Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop to encourage the development of quality manuscripts and finished works by new writers in our community.

The 2015 competition is for a book-length manuscript of fiction by a Asian-Canadian writer of Pacific Rim Asian heritage who has not previously published a book-length work of fiction in traditional or digital form.

The Author
The author must be a Canadian of Pacific Rim Asian heritage (e.g. East Asian or Southeast Asian descent) and not previously self-published or traditionally published a book-length work of fiction. After a manuscript is submitted to the EWA competition, the author agrees not to submit the work to any publishers until after the manuscript has been released from the EWA competition in October 2015. Receipt and release of the manuscript will be acknowledged in a timely fashion.

The Jury
This year’s jury members are Carellin Brooks, Glenn Deer, and Karen Shigeno. If there is no work of sufficiently high quality, the jury may decide that there is no winner.

The Publisher
Publishers will be offered the winning manuscript for consideration. If a publisher wishes to offer a contract to the winning author, a detailed letter of intent will be submitted to the ACWW.   The letter should include the following:

1) intended publication date (season and year)
2) proposed advance against royalties
3) description of proposed editorial commitment/vision
4) description of proposed promotional plans
5) sample contract and a copy of the publisher’s most recent catalogue

The publisher will include acknowledgement of the Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop Emerging Writer Award in the finished book as well as on press releases and advertisements. Should a successful contract be concluded, the ACWW will help promote the book.

Deadline for manuscripts: must be postmarked by July 31, 2015.

1) Completed application form (download for attachment).
2) $25.00 registration fee that also entitles the entrant to a year’s subscription to Ricepaper Magazine as well as membership in ACWW.  Cheque written out to: Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop Society.
3) three print copies of the manuscript in addition to a digital copy to be sent to: director@asiancanadianwriters.ca

Please send submissions to:
ACWW Emerging Writing Award Fiction 2015
P.O. Box 74174
Vancouver, British Columbia
V5V 5C8

Announcement of Winner
The winner will be announced at during the 2015 literASIAN: A Festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian Writing Festival Oct 8 – 11, 2015.

For queries and media contact
Jim Wong-Chu: wongchu@shaw.ca or 604.355.5795

Julia Lin: contact@julialinbooks.com

November 17, 2014

The Rise of Cantonese Opera: From village art form to global phenomenon

Defined by its distinct performance style, stage practices, and regional- and dialect-based identities, Cantonese opera originated as a traditional art form performed by itinerant companies in temple courtyards and rural market fairs.

In the early 1900s, however, Cantonese opera began to capture mass audiences in the commercial theaters of Hong Kong and Guangzhou--and changed forever. Wing Chung Ng charts Cantonese opera's confrontations with state power, nationalist discourses, and its challenge to the ascendancy of Peking opera as the country's preeminent "national theatre." Mining vivid oral histories and heretofore untapped archival sources, Ng relates how Cantonese opera evolved from a fundamentally rural tradition into a form of urbanized entertainment distinguished by a reliance on capitalization and celebrity performers. He also expands his analysis to the transnational level, showing how massive waves of Chinese emigration to Southeast Asia and North America further re-shaped Cantonese opera into a vibrant part of the ethnic Chinese social life and cultural landscape in the many corners of a sprawling diaspora.

An engaging examination of a global phenomenon, The Rise of Cantonese Opera rewrites the political, artistic, and economic history of an art form and an industry.

"A comprehensive and colorful picture of the birth and growth of what we know as Cantonese opera today. I applaud his achievement."--Daphne Lei, author of Alternative Chinese Opera in the Age of Globalization: Performing Zero

"Benefits greatly from the extensive use of a rich array of previously untouched archival materials and periodicals. The extraordinary strength of its source materials makes it unique. Rich and comprehensive."--Nancy Rao, Rutgers University

"Delightfully original scholarship. By following its movements over a vast geographical expanse and delving deep into neglected aspects of its operation--such as business organization--Ng offers a fresh, new understanding of Cantonese opera. His masterly narration and analysis of the subject on the local, regional, national and transnational levels reveal, for the first time, its extraordinary complexity. This work raises the bar for future studies of Chinese opera; indeed, of other genres of the performing arts."--Elizabeth Sinn, author of Pacific Crossing: California Gold, Chinese Migration, and the Making of Hong Kong

Wing Chung Ng is an associate professor of history at the University of Texas at San Antonio and author of The Chinese in Vancouver, 1945-80: The Pursuit of Identity and Power.

October 28, 2014

Vancouver Asian Film Festival (VAFF) 2014


The Asian Canadian Writers Workshop is proud to be co-present the Vancouver Asian Film Festival (VAFF) opening night feature Man From Reno on Thursday November 6, 7.00pm at the Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinemas.

Synopsis:  In a small town south of San Francisco, Sheriff Paul Del Moral (Pepe Serna) is driving home through the fog when he accidentally strikes a pedestrian, a lone Japanese man. However, before an investigation can take place the man disappears from the hospital without a trace. At the same time, Japanese mystery author Aki Akahori (Ayako Fujitani) takes a trip to San Francisco in order to escape the press tour for her latest book–a potboiler in her world famous “Inspector Takabe” series. Feeling lonely and vulnerable, she begins a romantic affair with a mysterious Japanese traveler from Reno (Kazuki Kitamura). Her new lover is charismatic and charming but abruptly disappears from the hotel, leaving behind his suitcase and a trail of questions…
This is the18th Annual Vancouver Asian Film Festival and will take place from November 6 – 9, 2014 at Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinemas, located in Vancouver’s historic Chinatown neighbourhood.  VAFF's theme this year is “What’s Your Perspective?” – a question that calls upon our collective past and present, and how we interact with one another in society.  Please join ACWW in supporting local Asian Canadian and Asian American films!