New Zealand’s literary exchange with China 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 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 Rewi Alley fellow. 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. Sun Wei is due to arrive for her residency in September 2019.
In 2014 Alison Wong was the first New Zealand writer selected to join the international writers’ programme. Alison writes of her experience:
‘The residency 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’