Applications are now open for 2018 Shanghai International Writers’ programme

Applications are now open for 2018 Shanghai International Writers’ programme

New Zealand's literary exchange with China continues with the call for applications from New Zealand writers to attend the international writers’ programme run by the Shanghai Writers’ Association for eight weeks in September and October 2018.

The successful writer will receive free accommodation in an inner-city apartment, a small stipend for living expenses and return economy class air travel.

This opportunity is available through a partnership between the New Zealand China Friendship Society, the Michael King Writers’ Centre, the Shanghai Writers’ Association, and Shanghai People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries.

Since the exchange began in 2013, three Chinese writers have enjoyed a residency at the Michael King Writers’ Centre on the slopes of Takarunga Mount Victoria at Devonport in Auckland. In 2013 Huo Yan, a young writing star from Beijing, took up the first Rewi Alley Fellowship then in 2015 acclaimed novelist Xiao Bai from Shanghai was the second resident. Last year Yin Jian Ling held the two month residency. Yin is a poet, essayist, novelist, literary critic, illustrator and translator; a versatile Chinese writer of children’s literature, who has covered a wide range of subjects.

In 2014 Alison Wong was the first New Zealand writer selected to join the international writers’ programme.  Alison writes of her experience:  ‘The Shanghai International Writers’ Programme was invaluable as research for my new book, but also for stimulating fresh creativity and inquiry through exposure to a completely different environment, language and culture. The connections made, whether with Chinese or other international writers were personally and professionally rewarding. I recommend the residency to writers with a sense of adventure and curiosity’.

In 2016 Heidi North Bailey was the recipient of the exchange. Heidi said at the time: I’m having a marvellous, stimulating and productive time. The Shanghai Writers’ Programme has organised some thoughtful activities for us including visiting a writer's home, and we have participated in several stimulating cross cultural literary discussions. But I am also having plenty of time to put hands to keyboard and write. Being here is such a gift’. 

Writers are invited to take part in discussions and literary events and are required to write an article on a nominated theme before the residency starts. Apart from that obligation, the writers are able to work on a project of their choice.

Up to seven writers from all over the world are in the programme each year. Many celebrated writers have taken part over the years.

New Zealand applications close on Friday 30th March 2018 at 5pm and should be emailed to the Michael King Writers’ Centre. Application details can be found on the MKWC website:

The selection will be managed by a panel appointed by the Michael King Writers’ Centre and the NZ China Friendship Society.

For further information, please contact:

Jan McEwen, Michael King Writers’ Centre, PO Box 32-629, Devonport, Auckland 0744

Ph: (09) 445 8451

Mobile: 0274 811 567