Always an honor to be invited to the Singapore Writers Festival, and this year I'll be doing a Pop Song Pract Crit alongside Karisa Poedjirahardjo on Tue 9 Nov from 9-10pm. Looking forward to deconstructing the sociolinguistics and prosody of the satirical paean, 这个那个 (aka "The Cai Fan Song") by Annette Lee and Benjamin Kheng.
This is probably my first pract crit since my A-levels so it's likely going to be a shitshow. Check it out with a Festival Pass!
I should really be promoting some of the new books I've published, but I do want to mention that I've finally set up a proper Instagram account at @joshuaipwriter where I will actually be talking about my books and such, with like uh pictures and things. and my older @joshuaipman IG has been privated and reserved for a flood of baby pictures.
I went on a massive purging spree and reduced 1k+ followers to 200ish over the weekend, so um if you were unceremoniously purged, um, please follow @joshuaipwriter instead, you may not have access to my flood of baby pictures, but are only entitled to my flood of poetry spam.
posting about a trifecta of thingies that launched over the weekend, all helpfully archived on Facebook Live eternally for your consumption!
- Launch of "A Luxury", the compendium reprint of A Luxury We Cannot Afford (an anthology about The Man, published in 2014, just before his death) and A Luxury We Must Afford (an anthology about life after The Man, published in 2015, with the open call period between SG50 celebrations and the elections). ALWCA has been out of print for a while after a few reprints and ALWMA just finished its first run, so its great to see this extremely value-for-money collection hitting the streets very soon.
- Launch of HK-SG Travel Bubble, this year's poetry.sg digital feature that popped up after a random facebook conversation with Eddie Tay. 8 pairs of writers swopped words and pictures about each of their favorite places in HK and SG - have a look at the site itself and indulge a little piece of digital travel!
- Launch of Call and Response 2, a Singapore migrant anthology - where 36 pairs of writers with at least a fleeting affiliation with migration and Singaporeanity exchange words across the page - in microfiction, short stories, poetry and more. the editors talked at length about their hopes, not just for the collection, but for migrant writing in Singapore - this was probably the deepest-digging panel of them all. you can get the book here from BooksActually's online store as always.
check them out slowly on your own time!
perhaps this blog should just be a series of links to my facebook feed, lol.
but here is one i do want to sit on, and come back to for a while - a list of the good people who have interned for me, and the good work they have done.
i really don't post here as much as i should. so this happened around 6 months ago - i redeveloped some of the scattered lines written for farquhar: the musical (in hiatus, renaming to 'found: the musical', reorienting topic to nonio / sophia, and waiting for bicentennial fatigue to recede... long story) into a short ebook, which ethos released for free thanks to the generosity of <redacted redacted>.
you can get your (free!) copy here alongside several other free ebooks by sing lit writers on adjacent topics, including overlapping takes on 1819 by neil humphreys and colin goh.
some news snippets:
"...check out Joshua Ip's Farquhar, a snarkily contemporary free verse retelling his life in various voices"
Straits Times, different article, not entirely accurate...
"...It aims to give Singapore's first British Resident the Hamilton treatment, after Lin-Manuel Miranda's smash Broadway hit about American founding father Alexander Hamilton."
I can't believe we are 6 manuscript bootcamps in - 3 for prose, 3 for poetry. I kind of veered off the last few - I definitely didn't read anything from the previous prose camp, and I only barely skimmed the last two poetry camps - but this time I found space to read the prose submissions cover to cover, and enjoyed myself thoroughly. My ability in prose is highly dubious so I'm happy here just to be a fly on the wall and listen to Bernice and Inez take the new batch through - fly-on-the-wall fringe benefits.
Three years ago, shit got real. Poets took wrestling classes and wrestlers got their poems on, as Sing Lit Station and Grapple Max kicked off the world's first professional wrestling - performance poetry hybrid performance. Literary and literal violence merged as wrestlers became the avatars of spoken word poets as we saw metaphysical battle after battle go down: Raffles vs Farquhar; page poetry vs stage poetry; English vs Singlish.
This year, it's happening again - 29-30 Nov at Aliwal Arts Center - Sing Lit Body Slam: 2 Much 2 Soon. Early bird tickets are going for $35 until 17 Nov (tonight!!!), full price tix are $40, and student tix are $25. We're running this as a fundraiser for Sing Lit Station, which is an IPC, so if you put down your IC and personal details you get 250% tax shield off the value of the tickets. Catch it while you can!
last year for Singapore Writers Festival i laosaied my way out of multiple panels for the first time. SWF is always a terok season so this year i begged new festival director Pooja Nansi to go easy on me for scheduling, and just use me a reserve who can plug into random panels when other ppl laosai.
instead, this is what i got:
<Generation Gap: Koh Tai Ann x Joshua Ip>
Sat 9 Nov 11am-12pm, Blue Room, The Arts House (Festival Pass)
-> In which I get upbraided for 1 hour by one of the most formidable literary ladies to walk the face of Pulau NTU
<Issues in Men's Writing>
with Neil Humphreys and Darryl Whetterwriter, mod Amanda Chong
Sat 9 Nov 3pm-4pm, Chamber, The Arts House (Festival Pass)
-> In which I get upbraided for 1 hour by the even more formidable junior version of Koh Tai Ann, with two other unwitting men who are about to, alongside me, have a new arsehole torn where their scrotum currently resides
<Launch of 11 x 9: Collaborative Poetry from the Philippines and Singapore>
Sun 3 Nov 3-4pm, Gallery II, The Arts House (Free)
mod by Martin Villanueva and Joshua Ip
-> in which we get to launch a book with many other happy people who will be doing most of the talking. yay!
<Navigating the SEA>
Sun 3 Nov 730pm-830pm, Rooftop Studios 1-4, National Gallery Singapore (Festival Pass)
Martin Villanueva, Christine Chia, Pauline Fan, mod by Joshua Ip
-> in which other happy people talk about Southeast Asia while I just ask questions. yay!
find me around the house, i'll be wandering around all day looking destroyed. there is apparently a festival bar this year, which will be necessary.
stuff stuff. yes i've been busy.
on saturday i'm off to melbourne for a couple of weeks with Alvin Pang and a gaggle of young Singaporean writers for an intercultural studio with Sreedevi Iyer from RMIT Creative Writing, culminating in an event at MWF - that'll also be the launch of the 2nd WrICE anthology, The Near and the Far, which I contributed a digestif to.
but i'm most excited really about having two weeks to sit down, away from the day job, and write. much of it will be spent working on my PhD submission for Practice Research Seminars, the next of which is coming up in HCMC in September, but thankfully in PRS, "the practice is the research" or so they say.
i've been somewhat overwhelmed over the last few years, but i managed to sieve through the output of 2 SingPoWriMos and 2 SEAPoWriMos to dig up material to fire off to a few of my favorite journals, which is yay for productivity, but a sadface because along the way i realised a bunch of them have died / went dormant. alas.
perhaps i should put some poems here and make my little corner of the internet a bit more alive.
entirely too overwhelmed to provide regular updates these days. most of the stuff that happens is visible on Sing Lit Station's social media channels, so I'm not going to update on those projects. but quick round-up of my own stuff:
on the personal front, last year saw:
- the launch of my first personal poetry collection in three years, footnotes on falling. it's about love. plenty of reviews after the jump and you can buy it here.
- the launch of Call and Response, a migrant / local poetry anthology. bringing 30 "migrant" and 30 "local" poets together to write poetic calls and responses, this anthology is the first time (?) we see "local" and "migrant" singaporeans featured on the same (indeed, facing) pages. may there be many more to come. can buy here.
- the second edition of sonnets from the singlish: upsize edition debuting in all its green glory. edition 1 (blue), edition 2 (red), upsize edition (3 or 1) with double the size and an extra essay, and now upsize edition (4 or 2) is here to horrify and entertain you!
this year is extremely unlikely to see a personal creative collection, but you are likely to see:
- an e-book on Farquhar and 1819 as part of the bicentennial, written in verse
- an anthology featuring poets from Singapore literally sparring with their counterparts from the Philippines, co-edited with Martin Villeneuva, called Eleven By Nine.
other projects that are on the backburner and will likely roll into 2020 and beyond:
- a similar dueling anthology with Singapore and Indonesia with the organisers of Paviliun Puisi, Mikael Johani and Gratiagusti Charanya Rompas
- a graphic novel, Ten Stories Below (i know, this is taking forever)
- Farquhar: The Musical
a singaporean poet with an unhealthy addiction to forms.
all content copyright of joshua ip 2012