Monday, September 25, 2006

The Song of the Wandering Aengus

For some odd (but entirely welcome!) reason, I've been asked by my publisher Enoch to read at the following:

Inaugural English Literature Conference:

Division of English, NTU, Singapore, 28-30 September 2006
18.30 Culture Ireland Evening,
Friday, 29 September, 2006

I know, I'm confused too. I'm often irresponsible, but I'm not Irish. Of course, the main point is that they want a representative of local poetry to perform (although I prefer to think that I'm about as representative of Singapore poetry as Pop Rocks are of carbohydrates).

Will probably be reading my RJC remix, but may insert some cheemer pieces since it's going to be an audience to PhDs (oo-er).

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Video killed the poetry star

I had lunch with Brian today at Seah St Deli. Brian Gothong Tan is a contemporary artist, just my age, exhibiting now with the Singapore Biennale. Above are stills from his promotional video for "Mobile", a play by The Necessary Stage that went on in June this year. You can watch the whole trailer here.

This all relevant to the career blog because Brian (who also designed my cover), has agreed to make about 3 short films based on some of my poems - I'm hoping we can use them for the "last boy" launch. Otherwise I'll just thrive on the narcissistic pleasure of having had a piece of me portrayed in an artwork.

Also in the deli was the writer who currently goes by name of Kerbing Lee (due to various reasons, I'm now quite cautious about naming queer people on blogs), who's got a rather good article on two gay Singapore Biennale artists on (formerly I'm covering the same field for Fridae, but fortunately Kerbing interviewed the Singaporeans and I interviewed the Filipinos and the Australian. Since I'm sure it's unprofessional to link to your competitors in an article itself, I'm posting the link here. Click above.


Sunday, September 10, 2006

Buy my book!

last boy will be on the shelves of Kinokuniya, Borders, etc. from Monday onwards. It's my first personal poetry collection, dealing mainly with my years of sexual and cultural development in New York. It's $15 + whatever else they slap on it; in any case I get 10% of selling price, so don't feel pressured to bring along your Kino card. ;)

Urgh, seriously, my bank account is trickling down. No-one pays freelancers on time.

Anyway, the launch was great - I got to meet Boey Kim Cheng, I saw my army friend Ng Teng Kuan again, spoke in Mandarin at length with Charis the graphic designer who worked on my cover (and guess what? the cover actually looks good!), and my parents had the good grace not to use their Blackberries during more than half of the readings. :-D Cyril Wong recited his stuff by heart, and Yeow Kai Chai prompted for me when I forgot my lines, and Eleanor Wong indirectly reassured me in her speech that she wasn't mad that I reviewed JBJ and concluded that her act one sucked.

Also saw Qian Xi, Rizal, Heng Siok Tian, Jason Wee, Clarence and a little boy who stabbed me in the neck with a black Pilot pen nib; ouch!!!!.

Very few of my non-writing friends came. I'm gonna wait till my personal launch to make them come... and trust me, it'll be a worthwhile event. :)

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Saturday, 9 September 2006, Life!
Forgot to upload this before. (From 1 Nov 2006, but adjusting the posting date)

Friday, September 08, 2006

The ugliest promotional jpeg ever.

Seriously. It should be used as an emetic. They even spelt "Firstfruits" wrong. *Retch*.

How the hell can I get this blog to have titles in its entries again???

Firstfruits Book Launch

It's a pure and transparent affair at Singapore Art Museum's Glass
Hall, as Firstfruits Publications launches new titles from a bevy of
authors: Earlier (Eleanor Wong), After the Fire (Boey Kim Cheng),
Pretend I'm not Here (Yeow Kai Chai), Like a Seed with its Singular
Purpose (Cyril Wong), First Meeting of Hands (Paul Tan) and Last Boy
(Ng Yi-Sheng). As a bonus, expect the usual witticism from guest of
honour, Dr K K Seet.

Date: Saturday, September 9
Time: 7pm - 9pm
Venue: Glass Hall, Singapore Art Museum, 71 Bras Basah Road
Admission: Free
For more info: Email

I guess it's no longer a secret... I'm writing a play on the infamous Grace Quek (whom I think is our next greatest woman performance artist after Amanda Heng).


THEATRE company Toy Factory Theatre Ensemble plans to heat up the arts scene next April with a provocative play based on the life of former porn actress Annabel Chong.

The Singaporean, whose real name is Grace Quek, set a record in 1995 by having sex with 251 men in 10 hours. In a reference to this infamous claim to fame, the play will be titled 251.

Director Loretta Tan, however, is quick to stress that 251 will not be 'a sordid expose'.

'I want the play to have a quirky but intellectual sensibility, and it will try to talk about issues like the public complicity in the porn industry, and what the benchmark of a national icon is,' she says.

Tasked with accomplishing this literary feat is writer Ng Yi-Sheng, 25. He took over the project last week from writer and Institute of Policy Studies senior research fellow Tan Tarn How.

Tan could not accommodate the scriptwriting into his schedule, and had also wanted to talk to Quek before starting on the script.

However, Toy Factory has not been able to get in touch with Quek, 34. She is believed to be working as a web designer in Los Angeles. Numerous phone calls and e-mail to her over the past six months have remained unanswered.

The director is hoping that once they e-mail her a copy of the completed script, Quek will be more receptive to their advances.

'I really want to get her blessing for the project,' she says.

· Do you know how Toy Factory can find Annabel Chong? E-mail us at, and we will pass on the message.