Our past festivals and initiatives – the programmes below have either ceased or assimilated into newer programmes.


In association with the National Book Development Council of Singapore and Yale-NUS, the Asia Pacific Writers & Translators Association held its 7th annual conference in Singapore, from 17-20 July 2014, at The Arts House. The focus was on Creative Writing and Literary Translation in the Asian Century. It was a gathering of authors, literary translators, publishers and others interested in networking and exploring ways to expand their readerships across cultures. Programmes include keynotes, panels, workshops, cultural events and free public readings.

This event is co-organised by  APWriters, NBDCS and The Arts House.

It was a multifaceted event that included:


Asian Expressions (AEX) celebrated writing in Asian languages in 2012 and 2013. In 2012, its theme was "Crossing Language Barriers in Literary Arts — Translation". AEX promoted the translation of notable works in the Asian languages first into English and later into Chinese, Malay and Tamil. On the first day, the programme concentrated on writings and writers in Chinese, Malay and Tamil. There was also a forum for writers in these languages to discuss trends, and to network. Over the next three days, the focus was on translations.

AEX was a unique and significant event because it was the only programme to focus on writings in Asian languages. AEX aims to encourage and promote reading, writing and publishing in Chinese, Malay and Tamil. It supports Singapore's bilingual policy and helps to promote more publications in the 3 languages besides English.

AEX was jointly organised by the National Book Development Council of Singapore, Singapore Association of Writers, Angkatan Sastrawan '50 and the Association of Singapore Tamil Writers.

Asian Children’s Writers & Illustrators Conference (ACWIC)

The Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference (ACWIC) was an event that celebrates children’s books, provides access to children’s literature with Asian content and promotes the writing and publication of Asian children’s books. This conference actively promoted and fostered the exchange of ideas on the global market. ACWIC presented great networking opportunities for established players and budding newcomers alike.
ACWIC is now known as Asian Festival of Children’s Content.

Asian Digital Storytelling Congress

Combining traditional storytelling techniques and multimedia tools, digital storytelling is increasingly being used in corporations and institutions. Contrary to popular belief, digital storytelling is not just the latest technical fad. It builds on the rich, ancient tradition of oral storytelling by combining the narrative story with a palette of technical tools (sound, visuals and voices).

Business Narrative

The rise of narrative methods has been recognised in Europe and the USA through a multitude of story-related conferences and event such as Golden Fleece International Organizational Storytelling Conference (Washington DC), Innovation Factory's Collaborative Innovation Summit based in storytelling, the Spoken Word conference, and The Copenhagen Golden Fleece Conference. Despite the rich tradition of storytelling in Asia Pacific countries, we are only just starting to develop our capabilities in organisational storytelling and narrative work.

Book Clubs

The Book Council organised numerous book clubs to create opportunities for writers, illustrators and publishers to meet and mingle with their readers and to introduce new works to the public. All Singapore-based authors, illustrators and publishers were welcomed to take up a book club slot. Book clubs from 2006 – 2014.

Read to Lead

This book club discussed the works of self-improvement authors, management gurus and successful entrepreneurs and managers. Meeting once every two months at the Jurong Regional Library, Read to Lead was co-organised by the Book Council and the National Library Board. It was a journey of knowledge, imagination, aspiration and discovery as we plumped the insights of motivational speakers and noted business leaders.


Another joint initiative by the Book Council and the National Library Board, this book club used to meet at the library@orchard and the discussions centered on Asian works. This book club has since stopped meeting with the closure of the library@orchard. Take a look at the books discussed during the past sessions.

Young Writers Club

With an aim to develop Singapore as a regional centre for writers, the Young Writers Club was set up by the Book Council for young writers between the ages of 12 to 25. The Young Writers Club acts as a platform to train and nurture young Singaporeans who have an interest and talent in writing by holding workshops conducted by established writers.
The club has been assimilated into All In! Young Writers Media Festival.

Publishers Writers Network

Publishers Writers Network was a gathering of professionals and amateurs in the writing and publishing world. Participants were updated on current and developing trends in the publishing field through sharing sessions with acclaimed authors, and talks given by representatives from publishing companies.

Talks & Forums
Awards, Competitions & Initiatives
First-Time Writers & Illustrators Publishing Initiative (FTWIPI)

The First-Time Writers & Illustrators Publishing Initiative wass an Initiative by the Media Development Authority (MDA) and the National Book Development Council of Singapore (NBDCS) to nurture talents in the publishing industry. The Initiative was targeted at assisting the publication of new works by unpublished local writers and/or illustrators.

Articles on FTWIPI's recipients:

Storytelling Competitions

The competitions are still ongoing as part of the annual Singapore International Storytelling Festival.


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