Tag Archives: Asian Canadian Writers Festival

Are You Ready? literASIAN is Back! October 9-12, 2014


The Vancouver Asian Writers’ Workshop (ACWW) is pleased to announce the countdown to its much anticipated celebration of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian writing set for October 9th to 12th, 2014 in Vancouver, BC. As a non-profit organization with a mandate to promote awareness of Asian Canadian literature, history, and culture, ACWW provide a supportive and culturally sensitive environment for members from a common Pacific Rim Asian Canadian heritage. ACWW also is the publisher of Ricepaper Magazine.

The main venue for the festival is the UBC Learning Exchange situated in the middle of Vancouver’s historical Chinatown at 612 Main Street. The UBC Learning Exchange is a community engagement initiative that brings together a wide variety of people, and facilitates connections in the Downtown Eastside between local residents, organizations and the UBC Community.

LiterASIAN 2014: A Festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian Writing begins Oct. 9 – 12 and will feature authors, Fred Wah, Louise Bak, Tom Cho, Corinna Chong, Doretta Lau,Edwin Lee, Serena Leung, Kim Fu, Souvankham Thammavongsa, Yasuko Nguyen Thanh, Elsie Sze and Lily Chow. There will be author readings, book launches and book signings, a special poetry reading evening with open mike, Book fair, outreach event at Richmond Library and Cultural Centre and our second annual celebration dinner fundraiser at the Pink Pearl Restaurant.

LiterASIAN: a Festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian Writing is a community-building initiative by the Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop and Ricepaper Magazine.

Interviews and photo opportunities are available.

For media inquiries contact Festival Director, Jim Wong-Chu -604-355-579 5
Website: www.asiancanadianwriters.ca | www.ricepapermagazine.ca/literASIAN

Denise Chong Comes to Vancouver for literASIAN 2013 – Book Launch of ‘Lives of the Family’

Long time Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop (ACWW) member and supporter Denise Chong will be launching her latest book Lives of the Family at literASIAN 2013.  As the international bestselling author of The Concubine’s Children, Denise Chong returns to the subject of her most beloved book, the lives and times of Canada’s early Chinese families.

In 2011, Denise Chong set out to collect the history of the earliest Chinese settlers in and around Ottawa, who made their homes far from any major Chinatown. Many would open cafes, establishments that once dotted the landscape across the country and were a monument to small-town Canada. This generation of Chinese immigrants lived at the intersection of the Exclusion Act in Canada, which divided families between here and China, and 2 momentous upheavals in China: the Japanese invasion and war-time occupation; and the victory of the Communists, which ultimately led these settlers to sever ties with China. This book of overlapping stories explores the trajectory of a universal immigrant experience, one of looking in the rear view mirror while at the same time, travelling toward an uncertain future. Intimate, haunting and powerful, Lives of the Family reveals the immigrant’s tenacity in adapting to a new world.

Information about the book: http://livesofthefamily.com/

Canadian-born Chinese writers on tour to promote translated works in China

jadeThere are over 40 million overseas Chinese scattered abroad in every corner of the world and at least a million or more in Canada alone. With many regularly returning to China to visit their ancestral home and the recent relaxation of visa requirement with the Approved Destination Status agreement between China and Canada multiplying the number of Chinese citizens visiting Canada, this continuing trend has created a renewed curiosity of North American Chinese history and experiences.

This interest has taken a bold step forward with the Chinese language translation and publication of the most celebrated and important works by award-winning Canadian-born Chinese writers. These translated works include Denise Chong’s Concubine’s Children, Judy Fong Bates’ at the Dragon Café, Wayson Choy’s Jade Peony, SKY Lee’s Disappearing Moon Café and Paul Yee’s Ghost Train and The Curses of Third Uncle. These popular works have been used as part of curriculum and teaching texts by a wide range of high school and university level educational institutions and considered canonized literature.

For the first time, the Chinese public in China can purchase and enjoy the unique and wonderful stories depicting the struggles and survival of generations of Canadian Chinese pioneers.

Denise Chong’s Concubine’s Children, published by Chongqing Publishing House has been in circulation since the beginning of January and has already garnered much praise and attention from popular book club for readers sites such as douban.com.

The remaining four Chinese Canadian writers are published by Nankai University Press. Based in Tianjin, China, Nankai University is the alma mater of former Chinese Premier and key historical figure Zhou Enlai and is regarded as one of the top class universities in China.

From the Canadian Embassy in China is sponsoring a four city book tour to promote these newly translated works by Canadian-born Chinese writers. The tour will begin in Guangzhou and will travel to Shanghai, Tianjin and Beijing.

Three of the five translated writers, Denise Chong, SKY Lee and Judy Fong Bates will be featured authors and will be giving readings and answering question about their works to the public. They are accompanied by poet, Jim Wong-Chu, a founder of the Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop.

SKY Lee says, “I am so excited that Chinese readers in China shall be exposed to our unique Chinese Canadian history. It’s a very rich heritage that can only be told by storytellers who were the direct descendants of a very old and proud community of overseas Chinese. Our original stories give immense emotional depth to the lone sojourner struggling to survive in the wilderness of the Gold Mountains.”

Three among the five writers, Wayson Choy, SKY Lee and Paul Yee are currently embroiled in a legal dispute with book publisher, Penguin Canada Books Inc. with allegations of plagiarism over its publication of Zhang Ling’s Gold Mountain Blues.

Toronto-based legal firm, Fasken Martineau’s May M. Cheng, the lawyer for the plaintiffs, claims that the case is making its way through the court system and no resolution is anticipated until 2015. She states that contrary to rumours, the Chinese Canadian writers are resolute in seeking a fair and just settlement to their case.