Selja Ahava (Finland)
Selja Ahava (1974) is a fiction author and scriptwriter from Finland. Her debut novel, The Day the Whale Swam through London was awarded the Laila Hirvisaari Prize in 2010. Her second book, Things that Fall from the Sky explores the unexpected and inexplicable nature of reality. Winner of the European Union Prize for Literature in 2016, its translation rights have been sold to eighteen territories and the English version was published by Oneworld in April 2019 in translation by Emily and Fleur Jeremiah. Ahava’s autobiographical novel Before my Husband Disappears came out in 2017. She is currently working on her fourth novel that examines metamorphoses, both in insect life and the lives of fictional characters.Courses conducted:
Shelly Bryant divides her year between Shanghai and Singapore, working as a poet, writer, and translator. She is a published author and has translated work from the Chinese for Penguin Books, Epigram Publishing, the National Library Board in Singapore, Giramondo Books, HSRC, and Rinchen Books, and edited poetry anthologies for Alban Lake and Celestial Books. Her translation of Sheng Keyi’s Northern Girls was long-listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize in 2012, and her translation of You Jin's In Time, Out of Place was shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize in 2016.
- Introduction to Literary Translation (2019)
- Becoming a Successful Literary Translator (2018)
- Introduction to Literary Translation (2018)
Harkaitz Cano (Basque Country / Spain)
The prominent Basque author Harkaitz Cano (1975) has published over thirty books of poetry, short stories, novels and comics, as well as books for children. His work has been translated into a dozen languages, including Spanish, German, Polish and Russian. His novels A Blade of Light and Twist were published in English translation by Archipelago in 2010 and 2018 respectively, both translated by Amaia Gabantxo. A Blade of Light explores the hypothetical possibility of an encounter between Hitler and Charlie Chaplin, whose film The Great Dictator is a thorn in Hitler’s side. Twist is set in the politically charged climate of the 1980s in the Basque Country, providing a multi-vocal account of the conscience of a society in turmoil. He is also scriptwriter and translator, and has translated into Basque work s by Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton and Allen Ginsberg, among others. He collaborates with artists, musicians and theatre people producing works for stage and performing his poetry.Courses conducted:
- Writing For Children And Young People: Coincidences And Realities Of Crossing Borders (2019)
- Translation in the Language of Europe (2019)
Felix Cheong, completed his Master of Philosophy in Creative Writing at the University of Queensland in 2002 and is currently an adjunct lecturer with Murdoch University, University of Newcastle, University of Western Australia, Temasek Polytechnic and LASALLE College of the Arts.
Author of nine books, including four collections of poetry, two teen detective novels, The Call from Crying House (2006), and the sequel, Woman in the Last Carriage (2007), and Vanishing Point, which was long-listed for the prestigious Frank O’Connor last year. His latest book is Singapore Siu Dai, a collection of humorous flash fiction. The sequel, Singapore Siu Dai 2, will be launched in September.
He received the National Arts Council’s Young Artist of the Year for Literature Award in 2000 and was nominated for the Singapore Literature Prize in 2004.Courses conducted:
- Flash fiction writing (2014)
- Building your students’ strengths in narrative writing (2014)
- Build Your Student’s Strengths in Narrative Writing (2013)
- Freelancing as a Features Writer (2013)
- Strategies for Teaching Narrative Writing (2012)
- Freelancing As A Writer & Features Writing (2011)
- How to Freelance & Article Writing (2009)
- Features Writing (2008)
- Writing Reviews (2007)
Melina brings with her more than thirty years of experience in Advertising and Marketing Communication. From an award-winning background in copywriting, she has held significant senior creative and management positions in international advertising agencies as well as founding a local one.
Her teaching experience includes lecturing at the Nanyang Technological University on Communication subjects such as Creative Strategy, Advertising and Writing for Media; and teaching Creative Concepts, Art of Story and History of the Arts at the Republic Poly.
Melina holds an MSocSc (Counselling) and a BA in Sociology and English.
In addition to teaching and training based on her professional communication specialty, she conducts workshops on soft skills development and personal growth and fulfillment. She is passionate about how the application of communication skills and expertise can be harnessed for individuals to achieve life goals.Courses conducted:
- Journaling - Reflective Writing for Self-Discovery (2018)
- Effective Writing and Editing for In-house Publications and Corporate Communications Materials (2018)
Simon Clews has been involved in all things literary for close to three decades now. For fourteen years he directed the world famous Melbourne Writers Festival and for the past decade he has headed up Melbourne University's prestigious Writing Centre for Scholars and Researchers, recently renamed the Melbourne Engagement Lab. He has organised thousands of literary events, written for newspapers and magazines and is currently wrestling with a small digital publishing start-up that seems to have a life of its own. He teaches writers and academics all around the world how to get the best out of the only tool they have in their trade ... words.Courses conducted:
- The New Self-Publishing – How the entrepreneurial writer can challenge publishing’s status quo (2018)
- Good, Clean Copy – How good editing can make you a great writer (2018)
- The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth…exploring the world of creative non-fiction (2017)
- For writers: Good, Clean Copy - How editing can make good writing great (2017)
- Walk & Write Workshops (2015)
- Communication skills for writers (2015)
- Preparing for publication (2015)
- Self-publishing - From idea to hardback, paperback or ebook (2014)
- Writing for Newspapers, Magazines and Beyond - Transforming an idea into an opinion piece or feature (2014)
Xavier Comas is a Fine Arts graduate of the University of Barcelona and Spanish graphic designer, photographer and author with more than 25 year-experience in book cover design. He is the founder of Opalworks, one of the foremost book cover studios in Spain and the CEO of Cover Kitchen, an award-winning book cover design studio based in Bangkok working for international publishers such as Penguin-RandomHouse, Planeta and Tuttle. His cover design for the European bestseller “Viajo Sola”, was selected by leading art directors in the publishing industry as one of the best cover designs in Spain of 2014. Xavier’s first book, both as a photographer and author, titled “The House of the Raja”, was published in 2014 by River Books.Courses conducted:
- Book Cover Design: The Birth of Ideas (2020)
- Conversation with a Book Cover Designer (2020)
- Creating a winning book cover (2016)
- The process to a winning book cover (2015)
- Judge by the Cover (2014)
Shalini Damodaran is a writer, writing coach and teacher educator. She is an experienced Master Teacher specialized in the training of teacher leaders and teachers in the teaching of writing. She was trainer and writing coach at the English Language Institute of Singapore and the Singapore Writing Project affiliated to the National Writing Project in the US. She has designed and facilitated three-week writing retreats for English language teacher leaders. As a writer, she writes to discover more about herself, her beliefs and her relationship with others.Courses conducted:
Writer, traveller, and photographer; Shivaji Das is the author of Angels by the Murky River: Travels Off the Beaten Track, Yoda Press (2017), Journeys with the caterpillar: Travelling through the islands of Flores and Sumba, Indonesia (2013), and Sacred Love: Erotic art in the temples of Nepal, Mandala Publications/ Aadarsh Books (2018).
Shivaji has also been published in magazines such as TIME, Asian Geographic, Venture Mag, Jakarta Post, Conscious Magazine, PanaJournal and Freethinker. His interviews have been featured on BBC, CNBC, Channel News Asia, Travel Radio Australia, Around the World TV, Radio Roaming, and Singapore Discovery Centre’s IFD exhibition. Shivaji has conducted workshops on travel writing in several literary festivals in Singapore and the region. He is also the conceptualiser and organiser for the Migrant Poetry Contests in Singapore and Malaysia.Courses conducted:
- Travel Writing in the Digital Age (2019)
- Love Travelling and Writing? Be a Travel Writer! (2-day workshop) (2018)
Debasmita Dasgupta is a widely published freelance illustrator and creative entrepreneur, specialising in drawing for children of all ages. Working with publishers across Asia, Europe and the United States, she has illustrated 11 picture books so far. Her work has been exhibited in Italy, Singapore, Thailand, Denmark & more than 30 international media outlets have featured it. As an art-for-change advocate, Debasmita has created an online movement "My Father illustrations" to promote girl child rights.Courses conducted:
Melissa De Silva
Melissa De Silva is the author of "Others is Not a Race", about Eurasians in Singapore. It was awarded the 2018 Singapore Literature Prize in the creative non-fiction category. Her fiction has been published in Best New Singaporean Short Stories: Volume Three, Quarterly Literary Review Singapore and LONTAR: The Journal of Southeast Asian Speculative Fiction.
Headshot credit: William ThamCourses conducted:
Eva Wong Nava
Eva Wong Nava is an award-winning children’s book author. She is an advocate for diversity in children’s books. Her books are typically cause-based concept books and fiction that encourage young readers to be more compassionate and inclusive. She has written Open: A Boy’s Wayang Adventure (Moonbeam Award winner) , a middle-grade fiction, The Boy Who Talks in Bits and Bobs (5 - star Reader’s Favorite review), and Mina’s Magic Malong (endorsed by Associate Professor of Social & Public Policy, Yale-NUS), two picture books, championing the underdog and lesser heard. She has picture books and a children's novel forthcoming in 2020-21.Courses conducted:
Sylvia is a Senior Lecturer with the DAS Academy which provides training in the field of SpLD from the foundation to postgraduate levels. She has two decades of experience as a specialist in dyslexia, literacy and English Language teaching in various educational institutes including the Dyslexia Association of Singapore. Sylvia has a Diploma in Education (NIE) and is trained in the Orton-Gillingham (OG) and Hornsby approaches to dyslexia intervention. She enjoys designing and delivering courses that enhance best practices in educational therapy.Courses conducted:
Alison is a EduTech trainer who specialises in both training and courseware/curriculum
development n Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality. She hastaught over 40 classes ranging from pre-schoolers to elders.
- Virtual Reality (VR) Storytelling for Kids (2018)
- Augmented Reality (AR) Storytelling for Kids (2018)
Inga Gaile (Latvia)
Inga Gaile (1976) is a Latvian poet, prose writer, spoken-word performer, playwright and theatre director, and translator of poetry from Russian. Her work focuses on everyday lives of women, gender issues and social injustices. To date she has published five books of poetry, including her latest Lieldienas (Easter, 2018) and a book of poems for children Vai otrā grupa mani dzird? (Can the Back Row Hear Me? 2014). Among her prose works is the Stikli (The Glass Shards, 2016), published as part of the series of historical novels titled We. Latvia: The 20th Century, and her collection of short stories Piena ceļi (Milky ways, 2018). Mūsu Silvija debesīs (Our Sylvia, who art in Heaven) is her theatre play about Sylvia Plath. Her selected poems 30 Questions People Don’t Ask came out from Pleiades Press in 2018 in translation by Ieva Lešinska. She is active in the feminist movement in Latvia and founder of a female stand-up comedy group.Courses conducted:
Ana Sousa Gavin
Ana Sousa Gavin is an experienced storyteller and trainer, qualified in Psychology and Early Years Education. She has a great passion for storytelling and believes that anyone can be a storyteller with their own personal style.Courses conducted:
- Improvising Stories - Stories with Structure! (2018)
- Improvising Stories - Stories to Remember! (2018)
- Improvising Stories - before creation comes imagination! (2017)
- Discover the storyteller within you 3: Storytelling with unusual props (2016)
- Discover The Storyteller Within You 2: Storytelling With Pictures (2016)
- Discover The Storyteller Within You 1 (2016)
- A stone or a boat? Storytelling with unusual props (2015)
- Stories with 5 Senses + Emotions (2014)
- So you think you can’t draw? (2014)
- Structuring Stories for Picture Books (2014)
Dr George Jacobs
Dr George Jacobs has taught collaborative learning to a wide variety of teachers in Singapore, from teachers of lower primary students to teachers of adults. Furthermore, he has written many articles and books on collaborative learning, reading and related topics. George serves on the boards of the International Association for the Study of Cooperation in Education and the Extensive Reading Foundation. Currently, he teaches at James Cook University, as well as helping the Book Council.Courses conducted:
- Role of Animals in Books for Children and Youths (2018)
- Children can Write their Own Books (2018)
- Children Can Write their Own Books (2018)
- Pre-reading and post-reading activities (2016)
- Reading as a Tool for Positive Education (2016)
- Dialogic Reading (2016)
- Collaborative learning strategies for teaching reading (2015)
- Pre-reading and post reading activities (2015)
- Intensive and extensive reading (2015)
- Dialogic Reading (2014)
- Cooperative games for reading (2014)
- Dialogic Reading (2014)
- Write Your Own Picture Book (2014)
- Reading Aloud (to Children) (2012)
- Cooperative Learning and Reading Aloud by Teachers (2008)
- Cooperative Learning and Extensive Reading (2008)
- Helping Children Write Their Own Simple Books (2007)
Shelley Kenigsberg is a prominent freelance editor, writer and trainer. She runs S K Publishing (working with a range of private and publishing clients) and, since 2009, has presented Editing in Paradise masterclass programs. In 2012, Writing in Paradise began and now, both programs are fun in (as the name suggests) paradisiacal places. This year, Byron Bay, Ibiza, Myanmar and Bali. She is currently involved in training editors, mentoring writers, and editing and writing for trade, corporate, academic and educational, government and private clients.
Shelley is Head of the Macleay Diploma in Book Editing and Publishing and has delivered the course for the past 26 years. She has developed and presented courses for writers centres (Northern Rivers WC, Northern Territory WC, NSW WC, Tasmanian WC, Qld WC); Asia-Pacific Writers and Translators; Societies of Editors, Style Council, Institute of Professional Editors conferences, Distance Education for the Open Learning Conference in Australia; writers festivals in Indonesia (Ubud Writers Festival 2004–16) and language and corporate institutes overseas (Indonesia, Japan and South Africa). Shelley is a founding member of Professional Editors Association (NSW), was President of the NSW Society of Editors from 2001–03, Vice-President in 2004, Chair of the Accreditation Board and active in other national initiatives through the Institute of Professional Editors (IPEd).
Shelley is writing her own book. So she understands how to wear a few hats. The author one is, currently, the worst fitting. This will change.Courses conducted:
- Masterclass on Advanced Copy-editing and Proofreading for Fiction and Non-fiction (2018)
- Show, Don’t Tell - Know how to let your writing flourish (2018)
- Managing an editorial project (2017)
- Advanced manuscript editing (2017)
- Honing your craft: Advanced copy-editing and proof-reading (2017)
- Structural Editing Of Non-fiction : Location, Location, Location (2016)
- Honing your craft: Advanced copyediting and proofreading (2016)
- Managing an Editorial Project (2016)
- Managing an editorial project (2015)
- Advanced manuscript editing (2015)
- Writing textbooks (2015)
- Managing an editorial project (2015)
- Advanced manuscript editing (2015)
- Come to your senses!: Writing with all you’ve got (+ the Goldilocks factor) (2014)
- Structural Editing of Non-Fiction: location, location (2014)
- Honing your craft- Advanced Copyediting and Proofreading (2014)
- Structural editing of fiction—All aboard the Arc ? (2013)
- Structural editing of non-fiction—Location, location (2013)
- Honing your craft: Advanced copyediting & proofreading (2013)
- Structural Editing of Non-Fiction (2012)
Smita has been working with Jacaranda Literary Agency for over two years. Within the agency she wears many hats – those of an assistant agent, running of Write Advice, which is Jacaranda’s editorial consultancy, as well as keeping an eye out for good book ideas and the right people to write those books.Courses conducted:
Author, educator, editor and publisher (in this order!), Catherine Khoo, has been writing and publishing since 1988.
She created the Young Author Scheme in 2003, mentoring under-18s to pen their first novella.
In 2005, she set up her own boutique publishing house, Experiences & Experiments Books, to showcase the works of her young authors as the big publishing houses deem them too childish! Since then, a selection of young authors’ books are available in print, as ebooks, and collected into anthologies. http://www.catherinekhoo.sg/estore
In 2010, she launched the Young Reader Club (YRC) magazine, the host of excellent stories by 10 to 14 year olds. YRC prides itself on its reputation of presenting excellent works of art, supporting emerging writers and connecting young authors with audiences of all nationalities, across lifestyles and cultures.
In 2017, she franchised out her creative education suite, Unique English Classroom, to Malaysia, http://www.english.edu.my/ (10 centres) and Philippines http://www.uecyoungauthors.com.ph/(8 centres).
Her vision: to build the next generation of thinkers and writers while creating a library of children’s literature for the region!Courses conducted: