Vancouver is home to the Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop, Ricepaper magazine, and numerous Asian Canadian authors.
So it's appropriate that one of the first Asian Canadian literary festivals is being launched here in our fair city.
The Asian Canadian Writers Workshop is launching the inaugural literASIAN: A Festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian Writing on Thursday (November 21).
The four-day festival will include a grand opening at the UBC Learning Exchange (612 Main Street) featuring opening remarks by Vancouver Poet Laureate Evelyn Lau and author book signings.
Authors as varied as Terry Watada (Kuroshio: The Blood of Foxes), Denise Chong (Egg on Mao), Janie Chang (Three Souls), and Terry Woo (Banana Boys) will present workshops covering topics ranging from how writers can avoid scams, finding the emotional core of a story, and literary forms in the age of new media.
Graphic novels will be addressed in a workshop by David H.T. Wong (Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America) as well as a free panel discussion featuring Wong, Watada, filmmaker Ann Marie Fleming (The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam), and Laara Ong (Shanghai Blues).
Manga is also in the mix. Watada's manga-gatari The Sword, the Medal, and the Rosary is one of several books that will be launched at the festival. Others include Denise Chong's Lives of the Families, C.X. Cheng's Wolf Coven, and Ann Shin's The Family China.
And what would an Asian Canadian festival be without a banquet dinner? A final celebratory event will wrap things up at Pink Pearl Restaurant (1132 East Hastings) on Sunday (November 24). The evening will include an awards presentation to publisher Brian Lam and Arsenal Pulp Press; a script reading of Banana Boys directed by writer-director Rick Tae (John Apple Jack); presentations by author Madeleine Thien (Dogs at the Perimeter) and Ricepaper magazine editor Anna Ling Kaye. (Partial proceeds from the evening will go to the relaunch of the ACWW Emerging Writers Award.)
An Asian Canadian book fair will also be available for the public to browse through new and used books as well as DVDs and memorabilia.
For more information and full details, visit the literASIAN website.