Creative Writing Competition 2014

Dear friends,

Submissions for the Creative Writing Competition are now open. Do note that the closing date for soft-copy entries is 31st December 2013, 2359 hrs, while the deadline for hard-copy submissions is 5th January 2014.

This year, there are three categories for submissions – poetry, prose and plays. We are pleased to announce that the judges for the three categories are Felix Cheong, Su-Chen Christine Lim and Verena Tay respectively.

Felix Cheong is a poet and a recipient of the National Arts Council (NAC) Young Artist Award for Literature in 2000. An active promoter of the Singapore literary arts scene, he currently works as a freelance writer and is also the chief editor for art-e, an ezine by the LaSalle-SIA College of the Arts.

Su-Chen Christine Lim is one of Singapore’s leading novelists. In 2012, she received the Southeast Asia Write Award for her body of work. Her new novel, The River’s Song, will be launched during the Singapore Writers’ Festival 2013, and in London 2014.

Verena Tay has spent 25 years acting, directing and writing for local English-language theatre in Singapore. She created various solo and collaborative performances, often based on original, self-written material, while as an Associate Artist with The Substation (2002‒09).

Do read the submission guidelines thoroughly when submitting your work(s). The entry form can be downloaded here:


Upcoming Activities in Semester 1!

It’s the start of the new semester again, and we have a slew of activities and updates for you!

First off,


Pretty much what it says on the poster. If you’ve any interest in the literary arts at all (or better yet, already plan to take a course in English Literature, Linguistics, or Theatre Studies), we would like to get to know you. Come on down and meet like-minded people whom you’ll come to call friends in the years to come.

And secondly,


Like to talk about books? Come and join us for our book club sessions. This semester, we talk about contemporary classics and bestsellers – five of them in five separate sessions!

For the first session on The Handmaid’s Tale, the details are as follows:

Date: 16 Aug 2013

Time: 4.30pm – 6pm

Venue: NUS Literary Society Room, AS5/0302

*The Handmaid’s Tale is one of the texts in the module EN4241 Utopias and Dystopias. Kill two birds with one stone by coming down for the session!

We’re not done yet!


Once again, the poster says it all! Aspiring poets can do much worse than to come and pick the brains of our established poet, Jerrold Yam. If you’re coming, do buy a drink from Starbucks as thanks for lending us the lovely venue.

And finally,


If you don’t know already, this is the design for this year’s NUS ELL student t-shirt! It’s $12 each. Proceeds from the sale of the shirts will go into funding the activities we’ll be running for you throughout the year ahead! If you’re interested, you can order yours at this link:
The size chart is as follows:


Photos of the sample is available on our Facebook page:

And that’s what we have planned for the first half of the semester. If there’s anything else you would like to see implemented, do drop us a note at or better yet, come down to the Welcome Tea and tell us in person.

Have a wonderful semester ahead!

The Booktique Short Fiction Challenge 2013

The Booktique Short Fiction Challenge 2013

Booktique is organizing a short fiction challenge to promote creative writing to aspiring writers! Using the prompt (a photograph), write a story of about 2000 words and submit it to them by 15 July. There’s a total of 5 Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 tablets to be won by the top entries in two categories.

For more information on the rules of the competition, do check out the link. Good luck!

Book Club Sessions in AY2013-2014 Semester 1!


Hi all,

We’ll be hosting a series of book club sessions in the first few weeks of the new semester in AY2013-2014!

If you haven’t read those books (see poster) before,  do so over the holidays and join us for the sessions when the semester begins! It’ll be an opportunity to discuss these wonderful books and also meet other literary-minded individuals (especially all the starry-eyed freshmen).

More details will be provided closer to the start of the semester, but you should probably start on those books now*. We’ll see you when school starts!

*Hint: Kinokuniya is having a 20% store-wide discount for all customers this weekend! 

Announcing The Winners of CWC 2012!

Presenting to you the winners for the recently concluded Creative Writing Competition 2012!

Congratulations to all winners and a great big thank you to all who bravely tried their hand at writing! So come on down to EPM 2013, this 1st of March to catch these budding writers in action.

First Prize : Samuel Lee, Self Portrait after Francis Bacon
Second Prize: Prasatt Arumugam, Masking Smells
Third Prize: Al Hafiz bin Sanusi, If the World Doesn’t End in 2012…
Honourable Mention: Srinath Nalluri, The Girl on The Train

First Prize : Chan Yuk Chi, Bon Anniversaire
Second Prize: Chin Jian Xiong, Mayfly in Love
Third Prize: Hajeong Kim, Decisions
Honourable Mention: Jyotsna Subramaniam, Midnight Mouse

First Prize : Goh Koon Hui, On The Curry Question
Second Prize: Gan Kar Liang, For Reign Country
Third Prize: Luke Vijay Somasundram, The Untitled Funeral Play

An Evening of Poetry and Music 2013


Dear friends,

The Evening of Poetry and Music will be held on the first of March this year!

As part of our long-standing tradition, we will be inviting the winners of the Creative Writing Competition 2012 to read excerpts from their winning entry. We have also invited local music artists For This Cycle and Jonathan Meur to perform during the evening. NUS Improv will also be performing an item as well.

Entry for the event is free-of-charge. However, we will be implementing a pay-as-you-please system at the end of the event.. Do come down and join us for a wonderful evening!

P.S. Due to their busy schedules, our judges are still reading your CWC entries. We will post the results here when it’s all in, so watch this space. Our apologies for the delay!



Competition Guidelines
This competition is open ONLY to NUS undergraduates
Participants can only send ONE work for each genre (i.e. they are encouraged to send in their best work)
Poetry: No longer than one page
Prose: No more than 2000 words
All works submitted should be original and have not been published anywhere else (this includes personal blogs).
All works are to be sent as an email attachment to in a .doc file.
Strictly NO PDFs
Kindly order the e-mail’s title as follows: ‘Musings Submission: < title of piece>’.
Your email should contain your name, faculty and matriculation number.
The top 3 pieces and 2 honourable mentions will be selected to be published in Symbal Magazine.
Symbal will have first publishing rights. All rights revert to the author upon publication.
We would appreciate if you could mention that your work was first published in Symbal magazine should you send it to other journals for consideration after the competition.
Submissions that fail to abide by the guidelines will be disregarded.