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10 A CLEAR DAWN like Aiwa Pooamorn, Gemishka Chetty, Manisha Anjali and Natasha Lay. Some of the poets here are very young, like E Wen Wong – winner of the 2020 National Schools Poetry Award – or Han Mai Nguyen, a university student, publishing here for the first time. Fiction includes novel excerpts from published work – Sharon Lam’s debut novel Lonely Asian Woman , longlisted for the 2020 Ockham NZ Book Awards, and Mo Zhi Hong’s The Year of the Shanghai Shark – as well as from novels-in-progress by Cybonn Ang, Angelique Kasmara, Mustaq Missouri, Sze Ning Ooi and Sherry Xu. Short story writers also range from the authors of collections, including Nod Ghosh, Rupa Maitra and Latika Vasil, to university students like Russell Boey, emerging via the secondary school division of the Sunday Star-Times Short Story Award, and Emma Sidnam, a rising star on Instagram. Some of the longest pieces here are creative nonfiction.These include an excerpt from Rose Lu’s acclaimed 2019 essay collection All Who Live on Islands , and pieces by Luo Hui and Serena Chen, publishing their own creative work in print for the first time. Amy Weng is featured here as a writer, but she is also the founder of contemporary Asian culture site Hainamana ; in 2017 she organised the inaugural Asian Aotearoa Arts Hui. Like Angelique Kasmara, Anuja Mitra, Kiri Piahana-Wong, Nina Mingya Powles, Rosabel Tan, Chris Tse, Janna Tay and Sherry Zhang, who all appear in this anthology, Weng is one of the new mavens of New Zealand’s writing scene, creating opportunities for other writers, and working to re-invent the cultural spaces in which new voices and diverse points of view can be seen, heard and read. Other places to find new work include zines Mellow Yellow Aotearoa and Migrant Zine Collective ; online journals such as Oscen ; small poetry press Bitter Melon 苦瓜 ; and the vibrant Asian arts, performance and theatre scenes which include Agaram Productions, Creative Creatures, Hand Pulled Collective, Indian InkTheatre Company, Prayas Theatre and Proudly AsianTheatre. In A Clear Dawn we embrace the word ‘Asian’, however general and imprecise it may seem. In a world challenged by existential threats, nationalism, prejudice and conflict, including among Asian nations and cultures themselves, this anthology of NewZealanders living in Aotearoa and scattered around the Earth celebrates our diversity and shared humanity. ‘Each leaf sings an opera’ ( 每片叶子上都有一台歌剧 ), Chinese millennial poet Cao Seng ( 曹僧 ) writes in his poem ‘Back Garden’ ( 后花园 ), translated by our own Luo Hui. Here we have seventy-five voices, each performing their own opera. The two of us, this book’s editors, call our welcome to the writers gathered here. Our karanga opens the way.Then our voices fade, drifting in the air.The speakers step forward. A new conversation begins. —Paula Morris and AlisonWong

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