Welcome to our Summer newsletter! If you’ve stayed back in the city, you’re probably keeping cool indoors away from the heat and humidity that is July in Hong Kong! Whether you’re working on your Imprint 22 submission or immersing yourself in your summer reads, we hope you’ll take a break and note the exciting events we’ve lined up for the rest of this year. From a gallery visit and poetry workshops to a yet-to-be confirmed author event and a festive gathering, there’s something for everyone!

Upcoming Event: Gallery Visit to Anselm Kiefer: Golden Age
Wednesday, 16 August 2023, 6pm
Join us for a WiPS-exclusive guided visit to this exhibition at the Villepin Gallery, Central [https://www.villepinart.com/] where world-renowned German artist Anselm Kiefer explores the utopian ideal of human civilization with works that evoke the mythology and nostalgia of the ancient “Golden Age”. Born in Germany in 1945, shortly before the end of the Second World War, Kiefer has directed his artistic focus on historical, often controversial, themes. Featuring a large-scale installation and monumental paintings created between 2020 and 2022, the “Golden Age” exhibition offers a dazzling demonstration of Kiefer’s probing creativity. This is a novel opportunity for WiPS members and guests to gather at a summer art event, followed by an optional self-pay dinner nearby.

Upcoming Event: Poetry for All
Back by popular demand, Sherryl Clark will run two new creative training classes in late September and early October. Designed for poets, would-be poets and those who enjoy reading poetry, these workshop classes will be held by Zoom at 10 am on Saturday, 23 September and Saturday, 7 October. As previously, Sherryl’s events will be recorded and available for 7 days for all who register. Sherryl is a prolific writer of poetry and an experienced teacher. She has two collections of poetry published in Australia and recently won a Prime Minister’s Literary Award for her children’s verse novel Mina and the Whole Wide World, published by University of Queensland Press. More details of class content to follow.

Upcoming Event: Winter Holiday Season Dinner at the FCC
We know it’s still only summer, but the WiPS committee is looking ahead to celebrate the year with our members. Watch out for more information on our festive dinner planned for late November!

Ongoing Event: WiPS Monthly Book Club
Running for a year and a half now, Book Club has a core group of very active members and “semi-regulars” who pop by when they can. Our July meeting is set for Thursday, 31 July at 7pm HK time, when we will discuss “The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida” by Shehan Karunatilaka. Join us (members free / non-members HK$80 per session). Register at https://www.hkwips.com/events/.

Ongoing Event: Writing Workshops
WiPS members have now been sharing their writings with each other on an unbroken monthly basis since April 2022. These 2-hour online interactive workshops have become highlights of our eager participants’ calendar. We operate a min/max 4 to 8 submissions per workshop and since inception have never had fewer than five pieces. Regular submissions (max 2,000 words) must be submitted 4 days in advance and the one (per month) long piece (max 5,000 words) 7 days in advance. Only WiPS members can submit a long piece, which is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. So, who is putting their inspired fiction or non-fiction writing hand up for 4th August?!

RECENT EVENTS

Did You Read the Small Print?
On 9 May, courtesy of leading Hong Kong law firm Oldham, Li & Nie [https://oln-law.com/], WiPS members learned what not to do when it comes to publishing contracts and copyright. Copyright to manuscripts lasts 50 years after the author’s death. Copyright to original works can be established simply and cheaply via Hongkong Post and a sealed envelope. Book titles are not exclusive to anyone but for marketing purposes it pays to be original. With literary competitions, you must remember you’ll be bound by the contest organizer’s terms and conditions, which you signed on entry. By the end of the evening, the first-time and not yet published writers amongst us understood that the publisher holds a lot of the contractual power and so we should only work with the reputable players. https://www.hkwips.com/2023/did-you-read-the-small-print/

A Rare Treat
Not quite witchcraft and wizardry, but there’s definitely some magic in old books. In June, seven WiPS members gathered at Lok Man Rare Books [http://www.lokmanbooks.com/] to learn about the entrancing world of antique volumes. If you’re looking for a unique present for that special someone or wish to treat yourself to a collector’s edition of your favourite novel, Lok Man is just the place for you. https://www.hkwips.com/2023/hidden-gem-in-a-bustling-alleyway/

AND FINALLY…

New Members
A warm welcome to our three new members who have joined since April: Daniela Alam, Do Do Chan and Jenny Chang.

Refer a Friend
Current members who successfully refer someone to join WiPS will be offered free entry to one event (up to $200). Remind your friends to let us know by emailing wipshk@gmail.com that it’s you who encouraged them to become a member.

Imprint 22
We eagerly await members’ contributions to the next issue of Imprint. The deadline for submissions is 30 September 2023 for a launch in early March 2024, so please start writing or refining your best work! We ask members kindly to respect the deadline as we cannot guarantee inclusion of late submissions. If you would like to submit work early, we will be pleased to receive it. If you wish to submit more than one poem, please send the pieces in one file only with a collective title. We can accommodate up to only 120 lines (including stanza breaks) in the section from each poet, especially if you are also submitting prose and/or artwork. Please see https://www.hkwips.com/imprint/ for other guidelines.

Valery Garrett
WiPS is sad to report the death earlier this year of Valery Garrett, a former committee member. Born in Britain in 1942, Valery lived in Hong Kong from 1973 onwards, and from her early interest in traditional dress worn in Hong Kong in the 1970s, she became an acknowledged authority on Chinese dress and accessories. Over 250 items from her collection were acquired and exhibited by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London for their permanent collection. A fashion designer turned full-time freelance writer, she specialized in Chinese culture and travel, especially of Hong Kong and Guangzhou. Valery was the author of eleven highly regarded internationally published books.

With our best wishes
Your WiPS Committee