Amir Muhammad‘s latest book, New Malaysian Essays 1, is now available for pre-orders.
You can pre-order New Malaysian Essays 1 for RM30 each, which is RM6 less than the bookstore price. The price includes shipping anywhere within Malaysia. If you are outside Malaysia, kindly make friends with a Malaysian resident who can then post it to you.
You can send the money to my Maybank account: 014105120512. Once you have done so, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know your address. If you’d like an autograph, let me know to whom it should be addressed
Closing date is Thursday, Feb 14. The books will be posted on Feb 15.
New Malaysian Essays 1 is the first of a planned annual series concentrating on local non-fiction writing. From polemic to ode to memoir, this series invites Malaysian readers – and writers – to notice, analyse and interpret the living, throbbing, squelching vitality around them. Multi-disciplinary, multi-tasking and best appreciated on multi-vitamins, this first collection takes us from Brian Yap’s election-era critique to Amir Muhammad’s alternative lexicon by way of Burhan Baki’s elegant deconstructions, Aminuddin Mahmud’s seminar on branding and Saharil Hasnin Sanin’s knockabout ruminations on language before rounding off with Sonia Randhawa’s stirring call for national (and therefore personal) self-realisation.
Writers: Brian Yap, Aminuddin Mahmud, Burhan Baki, Saharil Hasrin Sanin, Amir Muhammad & Sonia Randhawa
Length: 256 pages.
Size: 21cm (height) and 17.9cm (width)
Language: English (80%) and Malay (20%).
Published by Matahari Books
Design & Layout by Bright Lights at Midnight
Printed by ?
Retail price: RM36
National Library Catalogue-in-Publication
Launch date: 16 February 2008 (8pm; Central Market Annexe, top floor)
This book won’t be available in most Malaysian bookstores and the print run has been reduced to 1,000. The original distributor backed out due to “the Datuk’s orders” because of ‘the vulgar words’ and being ‘politically sensitive’. Excerpts and more info are on Amir’s blog.
The “phenomenal” Rahmat Haron, one of our Malaysian contributors, is almost impossible to translate. So much of his poetry is rooted in his innovations with the Malay language. But we like to challenge ourselves. We already have a few up our sleeves. And we’re putting this up on the blog, so there’s escape now.
You can see his (more conventional?) performance of “Keranamu Malaysia” (“Because of you, Malaysia”) on Youtube.
[Above photo © Yee I-lann, 2004]
On the eve of BERSIH’s massive street demonstrations in Kuala Lumpur last Saturday, November 10, 2007, Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah declared: “Saya pantang dicabar!” (fig. “Don’t challenge me!”)
Malaysian novelist and Off The Edge fiction editor Beth Yahp takes him up and posts an open letter on The Other Malaysia.
[You can download the PDF of the letter here. Also visit these posts by Amir Muhammad, Sharon Bakar and Ronnie Liu Tian Khiew. Above image from BBC.]
Urban Odysseys: KL Stories
Call for Submissions
MPH GROUP PUBLISHING is pleased to announce an open call for submissions of short fiction and creative non-fiction for an anthology tentatively entitled Urban Odysseys: Stories About Kuala Lumpur. We aim to publish the anthology in 2008, depending on the number of submissions that we receive.
The theme of the anthology will focus on life in the city, specifically Kuala Lumpur, with writings that show images of the new juxtaposed against the old, urban living with contrasting bright lights and shadowy realities and other short fiction or creative non-fiction which best encapsulate the spirit of the national capital. This is not a travel book but an anthology of literary writings about the city.
Stories must be original, between 3,000 and 5,000 words, and must not have been previously published. We invite submissions from both emerging and established writers. Stories for children are not eligible for this compilation. Manuscripts must be edited, typed double-spaced with 12pt font and e-mailed to email@example.com. Please include your name, address, telephone number and e-mail address. You may submit as many pieces as you wish. Faxed or handwritten submissions will not be entertained and manuscripts will not be returned. We will contact you only if your piece has been selected for inclusion in the compilation. Writers whose submissions are selected will be expected to work with the editors to fine tune their stories.
Deadline: 31 January 2008
Payment: A small flat fee and two copies of the anthology
[NOTE: The editors (Janet Tay and MPH Publishing senior editor Eric Forbes) will take stories from all nationalities, but the stories have to be about Kuala Lumpur and should "encapsulate the spirit of the city."]
Malaysian Mandarin-language poet and cartoonist Sam Seen will be collaborating with Filipino writers for his next graphic novel project, tentatively titled The Other Side. Updates will be posted on this blog.
[Above image is a page from Sam's last graphic novel China X'perience (2006).]