The Shanghai Writer’s Association invites every year seven writers from different countries to live the Shanghai experience two months, with the only interest of cultural contribution of each author to the cultural scene in Shanghai. This writer-in-residence program does not ask the authors to conduct a writing project but to participate in a series of cultural and literary dialogues, debates, congresses and lectures with Chinese readers, writers and editors.
The Association provides the international airfare, lodging and 100RMB per day for personal expenditures. To participate in the competitive process of application and selection to this program, the author is asked to send a biography, picture and samples of work to the following address: email@example.com . All material must be sent in Chinese and/or English to be analyzed by the jury. For more information visit: http://www.zjjlb.net/channel/13417430
For the period October-November 2011, the selected international writers were:
The residence experience by this particular group is well recorded here:
During my stay of two months, I offered nearly 20 readings of my fiction and poetry, lectures and debates in the following cultural institutions: University of Fudan, Tec de Monterrey, Cervantes Institute, Mexicano consulate, Embassy of India, Swiss consulate, Café Glamour, MADNESS Circle of art conferences, Shanghai House of Writers, Hangzhou Intercultural Center, among others.
All interventions, readings, lectures and expositions should be conducted in English, with translation to Chinese. But I made a personal effort to read my fiction and poetry in Spanish with translation into Chinese, English and French, to maintain an inclusive dialogue with all authors and public, maintaining the original rhythm of my work. For lectures, debates, press conferences and so on I used English language, with translation into Chinese
In China I met poets, novelists, haiku writers, editors, diplomats, professors and cultural managers, from both China and abroad, mainly European and Asian, with whom I shared views and friendships that enriched our artistic proposals as well as personal life. Furthermore, I taught two Creative Writing workshops in the Cervantes Institute. First, we thought of a creative writing workshop in Spanish, but as people from China and other countries would join, the result was a linguistic and poetic mixture.
During this residence some fiction and autofiction texts were born, inspired by Chinese culture, history and contemporary situation. This writing is part of a wider project I will continue to work on in the several years. I also wrote a haiku poetry collection. I met some Chinese haiku writers who invited me to their home and studio. It was a magical experience to communicate in a language and literature aside from our very own. With my basic Chinese and their basic English we manage to translate their haiku into Spanish and English, for further projects and communications. I attended with these poets a music & poetry performance where they recited ancient Chinese poems and we compared it with the Japanese ancient forms, which I know well. This haiku community is not related to the Shanghai Writers’ Association, though. This activity was of my personal interest and search.
After China, I visited Japan during one week on a brief scale, where I taught a Creative Writing Workshop in Cervantes Institute.