Monday, March 16, 2015

Words Go Round by NAC Singapore Writers Festival

The past few weeks have been exciting for us. We were part of the National Arts Council's Words Go Round 2015, which is an off-shoot event under the banner of the Singapore Writers Festival.

Schools can book authors for talks or workshops and we were booked for three sessions:

The first was a creative writing workshop at CHIJ Kellock (Primary). According to the teacher, the workshop was very popular and the girls had to ballot for places. Wah! We hope they had fun.

When we conduct these workshops, we often find that the kids start out hesitant at first, unable to think beyond the usual composition style and structure. But eventually, they loosen up and you can almost see the moment when the creative switch gets turned on "ding!" Once they realise they can be as wildly imaginative as possible, that's when the ideas start to flow and we get some really great stories.

The second session was a talk for p4-6s at Bukit View Primary. This talk was lots of fun. The kids were super interactive and when it came to Q&A, so many hands shot up we couldn't get to everyone in time! Love it when we meet so many students enthusiastic about reading and writing.

Finally, we conducted a school talk at for the Riverside Primary p3 kids. What a wonderfully vibrant sea of shades! Also a wonderful audience with many questions. I wish we had time to do Q&A for our other school talks. Kids often ask very intriguing questions. One boy asked why we called the character Danger Dan when he was supposed to save Singapore!

It's sometimes a scheduling nightmare to conduct these talks (in between Lesley-Anne's lessons where she has to dash out of school after class, go for a talk and return for another class). Nevertheless, we're very grateful to NAC for the warm support they've shown us. It really goes a long way when the national body for the arts sends the message to schools that they support local writers.

Meanwhile, we were also featured in NAC's Once in a Garden City brochure, which showcases new releases in local literature for children and young adults.

Also thanks to Singapore Motherhood for featuring us in this article on what local authors and celebrities read when they were young (in Lesley-Anne's case, younger).

Now that Words Go Round is over, Lesley-Anne has to study for block tests, which started the day after the Riverside Primary talk. I told her, never mind, you can rest after your A levels...maybe!

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