Yong Siak Street Party: 2 Lit 2 Miss | #BuySingLit

Yong Siak Street Party: 2 Lit 2 Miss

SingLit takes over Yong Siak Street once again to celebrate Singapore’s flourishing literary scene! Join us for an exciting lineup of programmes, discover new worlds through book launches, performances, discussions, and more. This is one party full of local flavour that is too lit to miss!

Date & Time
7 March, 10am - 6.30pm
8 March, 11am – 5.30pm

9 Yong Siak Street
Singapore 168645


Schedule: Saturday, 7 March

Photowalk with Samantha Ann Francis

The photographer’s mission: To focus on finding beauty. To discover what each photograph, your unique visual perspective on the world, reveals about yourself. In this photowalk, author and photographer of Shibuya Is Calling, Samantha Ann Francis, guides you through the intimate process of looking through the lens of a film camera at the world, and through that, yourself. Disposable film cameras will be provided.

Note: This session is full.

10.30am - 5.30pm
Singapore Biennale 2019 x #BuySingLit: LitBus

Featuring: Daryl Qilin Yam, Gwee Li Sui, Daryl Lim, O Thiam Chin, and Yeoh Jo-Ann

Hop on the Singapore Biennale bus for an exclusive programme in collaboration with the Singapore Art Museum! For one day only, the Singapore Biennale shuttle bus will transform into a literary presentation space as local authors read their works and answer your questions for a bus ride unlike any other.

This bus ride takes you from National Gallery Singapore to a stopover peek into the galleries at Gillman Barracks and finally drops you off at #BuySingLit at BooksActually.

Reserve your spot here: 10:30AM12:00PM1:30PM3:00PM4:30PM

11am - 12pm
Book Launch: A Tree To Take Us Up To Heaven by Jordan Melic

Kueny isn’t much of a worrier, except maybe when it comes to her father, the Custodian of a Thousand Generations, whose soul is hanging by a thread. But when her brother, Ah Ti, inherits the throne and smashes the Watercress Elixir that preserves her family’s heavenly reign, her worries take on a whole new dimension.

Left with no choice, the siblings set out in search of a new home, embarking on a perilous journey that takes them through 14th century Majapahit and 19th century Malaya, where they encounter a dreamy prince who promises them the world, and end up in a sparkling city that will consume everything they know.

A mix of mythology, history and adventure—think Journey to the West meets Huckleberry Finn—Ah Ti and Kueny’s story is about growing up and finding a place for oneself in the world. It is also a story of Singapore, different from the one commonly told—an attempt to capture a sense of the fullness of time contained in the land and its people.

12pm - 3pm
Confucius Says, I Want A Loud Poem: Poems for a Plague Season

Poetry Reading by Ng Yi-Sheng

You’ll hear him before you see him. Poet Ng Yi-Sheng will perform classic Singaporean poems. You’ll witness such gold as: “The doctor’s words were a needle weaving its thread of fear in and out of my mind.” and “The body grows in strength as it learns not to fight your mistakes.” Perfect for a plague season.

1pm - 2pm
Verses Of Love Across Generations

Panelists: Maarof Salleh, Khairool Haque, Noor Aisya Buang
Moderator: Nurul Arini Junaidi

I love you. But I wish I had a better, more interesting way to say it. It’s the eternal dilemma: How can I say what I mean when words fail? In this discussion, Panellists Maarof Salleh, Khairool Haque and Noor Aisya Buang turn to Malay poets from history to the present, to examine how their words do justice to the experience and wonder of love.

1pm - 4pm
#PrintSingLit with Monster Gallery

It’s simple, really: Print your favourite SingLit quote on a tote bag. Shout to the world that your favourite writer is just this incredible.

14:30 - 15:00
Performance by Mohd Khair Mohd Yasin

How can poems and songs about love inform and expand upon each other? Poet Mohd Khair Mohd Yasin will trace the history of love in a performance interspersing love poems and songs from the 1950s to today.

3pm - 4pm
Today, Let's Think Of Rainbows

Panelists: Charmaine Chan, Christine Chia, David Wong
Moderator: Theophilus Kwek

Can you write about grief but avoid becoming defined by it? Charmaine Chan, Christine Chia and David Wong discuss the complexities of public responses to memoirs of grief.

4pm - 5pm
Dreaming Of Stranger Futures

Panelists: Lu Hui Yi, Nicholas Yong, Victor Ocampo
Moderator: Ian Chung

What’s the worst thing that could happen to your home? What about the best thing? And what can our answers to these questions tell us about our deepest desires and values? Three writers of fantasy, speculative fiction, and science fiction discuss the potential in their genres for articulating our politics, and new visions of the future.

4pm - 6pm
Photowrite: Tiong Bahru with Marc Nair

Join Marc Nair on a walk through the backlanes and corners of Tiong Bahru Estate. On dreamy, sun-kissed evenings, time seems to stand still as the shadow of Art Deco blocks fall on streets that have remained unchanged over the past eighty years. Participants will capture images of the neighbourhood and pair them with stories in the shape of poems or flash fiction.

Note: This session is full.

5.30pm - 6.30pm
I Scared Sia: Murder and the Mythical in Singapore's Imagination

Panelists: Daren Goh, Suffian Hakim
Moderator: Ian Chung

Singaporeans love ghost stories, and stories of home-grown serial killers — anything grisly, and we’ll lap it up. In this panel, writers Daren Goh and Sufian Hakim discuss why the freaky dominates our collective imagination, and how they’ve harnessed this to tell genre-bending stories that ultimately explore themes of ostracisation, community and the Singaporean condition.

Schedule: Sunday, 8 March

11am - 12pm
The Write Way To Save The World

Panelists: Felicia Low, Meihan Boey, Wayne Ree

Behold, Singapore’s first superhero: an ass-biting, wok-wielding ah beng. Or: affordable healthcare. Or: a poet. It’s your pick — what do you yearn to be saved from? To choose a superhero is, really, another way of asking: What kind of miracle do we, as a country, need? In this panel, Meihan Boey, Felicia Low and Wayne Rée ruminate on their work as speculative fiction writers, to discuss how fantasies of the future help us decipher our anxieties, most improbable hopes, and deepest fears.

12pm - 1pm
Book Launch: Satori Blues by Cyril Wong

Moderator: Daryl Qilin Yam

Cyril Wong’s longest and only Zen-inspired poem to date, Satori Blues is a response to writings by teachers of Buddhism and post-Buddhist philosophies. Composed as a stream of thought—at times epigrammatic, philosophical, fragmented, even exclamatory—the poem has been described by The Oxford Companion to Modern Poetry in English as ‘a sustained meditation that recalls turn-of-the-century Geoffrey Hill in its intricately patterned probing.’

2pm - 3pm
Past, Places, Personal

Panelists: Charmaine Leung, Jennifer Anne Champion
Moderator: Daryl Qilin Yam

How do writers use language to commit a place, in a moment of time that has long past, to memory? To evoke its rhythm of life? Charmaine Leung and Jennifer Anne Champion discuss the art of writing memoirs rooted in setting, and the richness of the concept of place.

3pm - 4pm
Issit SingLit Going Online Now

Panelists: Charlene Shepherdson, Harini V, Natalie Wang, Jedidiah Huang, Hidhir Razak

SingLit is typing. SingLit is taking very long to reply. SingLit is trying to figure out: How are online communities like SingPoWriMo shaping writers’ work, and the local literary scene? In this panel, members of the online writing community come together to ask of SingLit: What’s on your mind?

3pm - 4.30pm
Photowalk with Ivan Kuek

Photography doesn’t happen in isolation. We are always shaped by the images and people around us — their ways of seeing. Ivan knows this best: He founded SGIG, Singapore’s largest monthly Instagram meetup, where photographers come together to share their work and exchange ideas. In this photowalk, he takes you through the beauty and nuances of collective photography, to discover its inherent potential for building new communities.

Note: This session is full.

4pm - 6pm
Speak Or Die! with Stephanie Chan, Joshua Ip, Marylyn Tan

In this reading, some of Singapore’s foremost poets pose the question: If you had to write a poem to save your life, to speak or to die, what would you say? What feels most urgent, that only poetry can say? In this way, the reading becomes a metaphor for our modern times, when stories and poems are one of our last sources of hope and sustenance.

4.30pm - 5.30pm
Book Launch: La Kopi by Alvin Mark Tan
at Forty Hands (78 Yong Siak Street, Singapore 163078)

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in Singapore. But how many of us know what it takes to brew a cuppa? Full-time artist Alvin Mark Tan returns to Singapore and rediscovers the coffee culture here through oils, inks, watercolours and videos. In his first sketchbook brew dedicated to his hometown, he plunges into the coffee scene to see how it has percolated throughout the island.

Organised by BooksActually

BooksActually is an independent bookstore specialising in literature, including obscure and critical works. Its Tiong Bahru shop is also popular with customers seeking literary trinkets and other lovely tchotchkes. BooksActually publishes and distributes books under the imprint Math Paper Press, and produces hand-stitched notebooks and other stationery under Birds & Co.