November 24, 2014

Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop Emerging Writer Award 2015

Press Release



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The 2015 competition is for a book-length manuscript of fiction by a previously unpublished Asian-Canadian writer of Pacific Rim Asian heritage.

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

The Jury
The jury will consist of three people drawn from writers, editors, academics, booksellers, teachers, and librarians. The jury members may or may not be of Asian descent. 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.

Please include four hard copies of your manuscript in your application package along with a cover letter and CV.  Deadline for manuscripts: must be postmarked by July 31, 2015.

Send manuscripts to:
ACWW Emerging Writing Award Fiction 2015
P.O. Box 74174
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 @ 604.355.5795

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!

October 22, 2014

Doretta Lau's Presentation "Don't Let Your Stories Languish! How To Submit to Literary Magazines" at literASIAN Festival 2014

Click here to download a PDF of Doretta Lau's presentation, Don't Let Your Stories Languish: How to Submit to Literary Magazines.  Doretta breaks the process down step by step and gave examples.   She also even shares her own personal manuscript submission spreadsheet; you can get a glimpse of all the failure she suffered along the way before she landed her book deal. As well, she offers quick tips and direct links to publishing resources in Canada.  This is a must-view presentation.

October 13, 2014

literASIAN 2014 - That's A Wrap, Folks!

(Left to Right - Todd Wong, Yasuko Thanh, Chris Wong, Louise Bak, Elaine Woo, Kim Fu, Ed Koo, Doretta Lau, Elliot Chan, Souvankham Thammavongsa, Corinna Chong, Sharon Miki, Elsie Sze, Lily Chow, Tom Cho, Jim Wong-Chu, Edwin Lee)