Keynote: Where is writing in an age of everything digital?

All In! Young Writers Festival logo.

Keynote: Where is writing in an age of everything digital?
Writing has always evolved with the medium by which it is used for–from stone and bark, to papyrus reeds, from paper and moveable type to changing the way Man tells his stories. Where is writing now, in the midst of the digital and augmented reality revolution, and where is it headed?

I presented the keynote address for the All In! Young Writers Festival 2018 on the topic “Where is writing in an age of everything digital?”

The session was moderated by Graham Gamble and took place on/at:

Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2018
Time: 10am to 11am
Venue: The TreeTop (Function Room), *SCAPE

Check out the speech here.

QLRS: Full marks for freshman effort

My review of Philip Holden’s Heaven Has Eyes is now up on Quarterly Literary Review Singapore:

Full marks for freshman effort
Philip Holden hits the bull’s-eye with Heaven Has Eyes

Code-switching, or alternating between languages or language varieties, is never an easy feat.

But Philip Holden makes the practice look effortless with Heaven Has Eyes, his debut collection of short stories that centre on or revolve around Singapore.

Each of the 12 texts demonstrates Holden’s keen understanding of both the Singaporean condition and the linguistic oddities that characterise the nation-state.

Whether it is portraying characters that converse using a mix of English and Singlish, or shifting between English and the various Chinese language varieties in telling each of the stories, Holden is equally at ease.

“Aeroplane”, for one, utilises an intelligent interplay of English, Mandarin and Hokkien, conveying, through the symbol of flying, themes of migration, abandonment and exile.

It is done masterfully.


Design and technology in the library

After quite a few years of not having visited a public library, I popped by one earlier today to borrow a book.

The process of finding the text was quite painless; the NLB catalogue told me the book was located at a certain shelf on a certain floor.

After picking out the book, I proceeded to the borrowing station.

Initially, I was quite miffed as there was only one terminal.

And it was being hogged by an aunty who wanted to borrow 2000 books, but didn’t know how to work the machine.

I sighed and resigned myself to a long wait – until I saw the sign in the picture above.

I duly downloaded the app, logged into my account and scanned the barcode on the inside cover of the book.

Voila! Book borrowed in less than a minute, and I was quickly on my way to my next destination.

Kudos to the National Library Board, Singapore, for its brilliant use of design and technology.