Following enthusiastic responses from the Cha Reading Series
, we’re starting up the Cha Writing Workshop Series
, run by Tammy Ho and Eddie Tay, with the support of the English Departments at The Chinese University of Hong Kong 香港中文大學
and Hong Kong Baptist University 香港浸會大學
. The series will feature workshops conducted by writers, translators and educators affiliated with Cha
. These writers, translators and educators may also give talks on literature, language, writing, craft, and more.
A small payment would be charged, which would be mainly used to remunerate the workshop facilitators. It would also subsidise free future workshops for participants from economically disadvantaged groups we hope to cater to.
We are starting modestly, with plans for 1 or 2 workshops to be held at the end of every month, beginning from 2018. If there is demand for this, we plan to expand and take this directly to local schools, and to venues in various parts of Hong Kong.
We are starting small, but we are nonetheless dreaming big. We are poets, and the contributors and editors at Cha
do dream a lot. We start the Cha Writing Workshop Series because we want to make a difference. We’re interested in building a platform where readers and writers can gather, and where the love of literary and creative arts can find safe haven.
If you would like to suggest an idea, contact our mentors, or simply to talk to us about the Cha Writing Workshop Series
, please write to Eddie Tay (firstname.lastname@example.org) and/or Tammy Ho (email@example.com).
Stay tuned for more news on this initiative.
Tammy Ho Lai-Ming is the founding co-editor of Cha, a vice president of PEN Hong Kong and an assistant professor at Hong Kong Baptist University with books forthcoming from Delere Press, Math Paper Press, Palgrave and Springer. She is also an editor of the academic journals Victorian Network and Hong Kong Studies and has edited or co-edited eight volumes of poetry, fiction and essays, including Desde Hong Kong (2014), Quixotica: Poems East of La Mancha (2016), We, Now, Here, There, Together (2017), and Twin Cities (2017). In 2015-2016, she co-directed the Hong Kong Budding Poets Award Programme (in collaboration with the Education Bureau and the Academy of Gifted Education). Tammy’s translations have been published in World Literature Today, Chinese Literature Today, Drunken Boat and Pathlight and from the Chinese University Press. She is the winner of the 2015 Young Artist Award in Literary Arts, presented by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council, and her first poetry collection is Hula Hooping (2015). Visit her website for more information. (Photograph by Sha’ianne Molas Lawas)
Tammy: At Hong Kong Baptist University, I teach drama, poetics, and fiction. I have run poetry workshops for college-level students in Hong Kong and younger students in Macau. I am interested in leading poetry and/or translation workshops for all age groups, and particularly for learners who are often overlooked by other projects or programmes.
Henrik Hoeg is a Danish poet living in Hong Kong. He has published his poetry in numerous places including Cha, Magma, TimeOut and more. His first book, Irreverent Poems for Pretentious People was an awardee of the Proverse Prize 2015, and published the following year. He has taught poetry workshops at several international schools as well as the Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education. He also runs and emcees Peel Street Poetry, Hong Kong’s largest poetry open mic.
Henrik: I’m happy to teach any age, but will probably resonate most with older kids.
Antony Huen has published poems, book reviews, and essays in Cha, The Shanghai Literary Review, Eborakon, and elsewhere. He is one of Eyewear Publishing’s The Best New British and Irish Poets in 2017, and represented the anthology at the Cúirt International Festival of Literature. As a PhD researcher at the University of York, he investigates contemporary autobiographical and biographical poetry in relation to visual art. He has six years of teaching experience, and has taught creative writing, modern and contemporary literature, and academic research skills to secondary school and university students in both Hong Kong and the UK.
Antony: I have years of experience in designing courses, teaching, and running workshops. Teaching at the Chinese University of Hong Kong for three years, I designed and taught a creative writing course, and taught a wide range of academic writing courses. Now studying at the University of York, I teach a modern literature module, serve as a senior tutor at the Writing Centre, and run academic research workshops for prospective university students. Given my experience, I would be interested in teaching secondary school and college students in Hong Kong. Having taught IELTS preparation courses to adults for a year, I am also confident in teaching members of the public as well.
Collier Nogues‘ poetry collections are The Ground I Stand On Is Not My Ground (Drunken Boat, 2015) and On the Other Side, Blue (Four Way, 2011). Her work has been supported by fellowships and grants from the MacDowell Colony, the Ucross Foundation, Vermont Studio Center, and Lingnan University. She teaches creative writing in the Chinese University of Hong Kong’s MA Programme in Literary Studies, and is a PhD Fellow at the University of Hong Kong. Collier has designed and led Education Bureau workshops for Hong Kong English teachers, and has led creative writing workshops for Hong Kong primary and secondary students and for adults in the United States. She also edits poetry for Juked and curates Ragged Claws, Hong Kong’s English-medium poetry craft talk series.
Collier: Often, schools treat creative writing in English as something that only students who are already fluent in the language can or should do. On the contrary, I’ve found that creative writing, particularly poetry and storytelling, can help students develop a sense of ownership of English that they don’t always gain from their grammar and reading lessons. I enjoy working with all ages, from primary students to adults, and I am particularly glad to work with students in Band 2 and 3 schools and other people who are infrequently served by Education Bureau programming and other initiatives.
Jason S Polley is associate professor of English at Hong Kong Baptist University. His research interests include post-WWII comics, postmodern literature, Anglo-Indian fiction, Hong Kong Studies, and creative nonfiction. He has published on women in Banville, slum ideology in District 9, race in The Greenlanders, official narratives in Watchmen, and “everyday justice” in Smiley, Franzen, and DeLillo. Aside from a handful of Hong Kong-published playful experimental poems about power, promise, and protest, he has two creative nonfiction books: a collection of India travel-narratives-in-verse titled Refrain and a Hong Kong drug-underworld-novella-in-verse titled Cemetery Miss You. He is co-editor of the forthcoming volume Cultural Conflict in Hong Kong: Angles on a Coherent Imaginary (Palgrave 2018), which contains his chapter on contemporary identity politics in Hong Kong as discursively reviewed through auteur director Wong Kar Wai’s early work.
Jason: My teaching career began almost two decades ago in primary school ESL classrooms both in Guangzhou and Hong Kong. I’d like to return to local early primary milieux. I hope to integrate the wordplay and jocoseriousness and care of verse and comics into local students’ early learning—and thinking and (self-)reflection.
In 2017, Kate Rogers’ poetry collection, Out of Place (Aeolus House–Quattro Books), has debuted in Toronto, Hong Kong and at the 2017 Singapore Writers Festival. Kate was shortlisted for the 2017 Montreal International Poetry Prize. Her poetry is forthcoming in Catherines, the Great (Oolichan) and has appeared in Twin Cities: An Anthology of Twin Cinema from Singapore and Hong Kong (Landmark Books, 2017); Juniper; OfZoos; The Guardian; Asia Literary Review; Cha; Morel; The Goose: a journal of Arts, Environment and Culture; Kyoto Journal and Asiatic: An International Journal of Asian Literatures, Cultures and Englishes. She lectures in literature and media studies at the Community College of City University.
Kate: I’ve spent eleven years developing language through literature with creative writing courses which reflect the diversity of Asian writers in English. At the Community College of City University students from many cultural backgrounds often connect with poetry for the first time through our literature courses. I would like to foster creative self-expression for youth from communities seeking a voice in Hong Kong.
Vivian Tang is a writer, daydreamer, crafter and teacher. She is currently reading Frank McCourt’s autobiographies, Ernest Cline’s Ready, Player One , John Yorke’s Into the Woods and John McPhee’s Draft No. 4. She can be found chipping away at her sci fi novel from a decade ago on the identity of work in the Hong Kong community, encouraging her fellow writers in weekly Meetups and, just for fun, binding journals. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the City University of Hong Kong and is a contributor to Cha. Vivian’s journal and shop can be found here..
Vivian: I would be happy to work with an audience from secondary school, college and public.
Eddie Tay is a poet, street photographer and literature professor at the Department of English, Chinese University of Hong Kong, where he teaches courses on reading and writing poetry, children’s literature, autoethnography, photography and social media. He is the author of four volumes of poetry. His first, remnants (2001), consists of renditions of mythic and colonial history of Malaya as well as an homage to the Tang Dynasty poets Li Bai, Du Fu and Li He. His second volume, A Lover’s Soliloquy (2005), extends his interests in Tang Dynasty poetry through renditions of the poetry of Li Shang-yin. The volume is also about the modern cities of Hong Kong and Singapore. His third, The Mental Life of Cities, is a winner of the 2012 Singapore Literature Prize. In it, he experiments with bilingual (English-Chinese) poetry. His most recent collection is Dreaming Cities (2016), featuring his street photography and poetry. He is the Reviews Editor of Cha. He has conducted photography and creative writing workshops for primary and secondary school students, and has collaborated with NGOs such as the Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education. He has also conducted workshops for teachers on behalf of the Education Bureau.
Eddie: While I could teach primary school students as well, I prefer to conduct workshops that combine street photography and creative writing elements for upper secondary students or adults.
Lian-Hee Wee is (co-)author or (co-)editor of eight books and numerous research articles. His most notable publications include the monograph Phonological Tone (Cambridge University Press, to appear) and the journal article “Tone Assignment in Hong Kong English” published in Language (2016). Lian-Hee’s work unravels patterns in Chinese languages as well as Asian varieties of English such as those spoken in Singapore and Hong Kong. He taught at the Department of Chinese Studies at the National University of Singapore and is now Professor of Linguistics at the Hong Kong Baptist University. He is the founding director of Bilingual Improv Brigade which is probably the world’s first Chinese-English bilingual Improv Comedy Group. He dabbles with music, poetry, and animal activism.
Lian-Hee: I’m interested in teaching students of all ages, but I need to be told in advance so that I can prepare.
Marco Yan is a Hong Kong-born poet, whose works recently appeared in Diode Poetry Journal, the Adroit Journal, Louisville Review and more. He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from the University of Hong Kong and a Master of Fine Arts degree in poetry from New York University. Visit Marco’s website for more information.
Marco: When it comes to leading workshops, I particularly enjoy guiding writers to generate raw materials for potential poems, understand prosody and the use of structure and form, and edit and revise their current works. I am willing to teach any age groups, but I do have more experience teaching high-school and college students.