'Sayang' the theme for next year's Singapore Writers Festival

Speakers at the closing debate of this year's Singapore Writers Festival.
Speakers at the closing debate of this year's Singapore Writers Festival. ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

SINGAPORE - Sayang, a popular Malay term used colloquially to express endearment, will be the theme for the 2016 Singapore Writers Festival, set to run from Nov 4 to 13, 2016.

This was announced at a post-festival lunch by the festival's director Yeow Kai Chai on Thursday (Dec 3).

The word, which has multiple meanings, is used to express "effusive love and adoration, but also pity and a bittersweet sense of lost opportunities. The Festival will examine life's riches and ambivalences together", he said.

The festival's Words Go Round outreach programme for schools and the community will run from Feb 29 to March 12, 2016, and feature 57 writers and 62 programmes. Featured authors include Sarah J. Maas and Brandon Mull, the American young adult authors who are behind the Throne Of Glass and Fableheaven series respectively. Singaporean author Eliza Teoh, who writes the Ellie Belly series, is also participating.

This year's festival ran from Oct 30 to Nov 8, and was themed Island Of Dreams. It drew about 19,700 participants, who attended the 310 event programmes.