The Blessing of Restlessness

Panel Discussions


3 Nov, Sat 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM


The Arts House (TAH), Blue Room
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This session is in English


Wesley Leon Aroozoo


The Singaporean speakers in this panel have sought inspiration or refuge elsewhere.  San Francisco-based Singaporean Kirstin Chen sets her latest novel in Mao-era China; novelist-musician Kelvin Tan is inspired by poets and philosophers in his literary and musical output; and Desmond Kon creates works across genres and mediums, from poetry to fiction to interdisciplinary art. What motivates them, and what fuels their peripatetic hunger for new experiences?


Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé is the author of a novel, four hybrid works, and nine poetry collections. As chief editor of Squircle Line Press, he has edited more than 20 books and co-produced three audiobooks. The former journalist is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award, the Independent Publisher Book Award, the National Indie Excellence Award and the 2014 Poetry World Cup.

Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé is featured in the following SWF event(s):
Kirstin Chen

Singapore - US

Kirstin Chen’s new novel, Bury What We Cannot Take, has been named a “most anticipated upcoming book” by Electric Literature, Harper’s Bazaar and InStyle, among others. She is also the author of Soy Sauce for Beginners. An NTU-NAC National Writer-in-Residence in Singapore in 2017, she has received awards from the Steinbeck Fellows Program, Sewanee, Hedgebrook, and the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference.

Kirstin Chen is featured in the following SWF event(s):
Kelvin Tan


Kelvin Tan is a musician and writer. He is the lead guitarist for seminal homegrown rock 'n' roll band, The Oddfellows, and has released 143 solo albums. He is also the author of All Broken Up and Dancing, The Nethe(r);R, as well as a few plays, including the script for Flights Through Darkness, a film directed by Wong Kwang Han. 

Kelvin Tan is featured in the following SWF event(s):