SINGAPORE, 17 May 2019
Over 45,000 participants – the biggest to date – spent their March weekends attending the third edition of the annual #BuySingLit, Singapore’s largest movement promoting local literature by homegrown publishers, retailers and literary arts nonprofits.
#BuySingLit 2019 saw a record high of close to 100 events being organised across the island – thanks to the combined efforts of 61 programme partners, several of which came from non-literary industries, including new partners to the #BuySingLit movement, such as Grab and Mapletree.
In a post-event survey involving 800 participants, 74% of the respondents said their interest in Singapore literature increased after attending the events. In addition, 90% of them said they were satisfied with the programmes.
“Many participants were pleasantly surprised by the diversity of programmes this year, which included innovative initiatives such as the Sing Lit Cloud printers and the mystery book redemption via GrabRewards,” said William Phuan, Executive Director of the Singapore Book Council. “The public was exposed to Singapore literature, or SingLit, through new ways. We hope all these events have whetted the appetite of Singaporeans and encouraged more of them to check out the rich offerings from our local literary scene,” Mr Phuan added.
Many of the events found new audiences as they took place in novel locations and neighbourhood spaces. These events include the Pesta Buku Melayu Singapura 2019 (Malay Book Fair 2019) at Wisma Geylang Serai; #BuySingLit Yong Siak Street Party in Tiong Bahru organised by independent bookstore BooksActually; as well as Hello SingLit! x Arts in Your Neighbourhood, a collaboration with Arts in Your Neighbourhood, organised by Woods in the Books at Toa Payoh HDB hub.
“The Pesta Buku Melayu Singapura 2019 was the first-ever event that involved several Malay publishers coming together to promote Malay literature in the heartlands,” said Syed Ali, Director of Pustaka Islamiyah, who was one of the co-organisers of the book fair. “Seeing the community rally together was like a throwback to the old kampung days, and we hope to continue nurturing the growing interest in Singapore Malay literature,” Mr Syed Ali noted.
Sheila Lim, one of the participants at the #BuySingLit Yong Siak Street Party, said: “I grew up in Tiong Bahru, so being able to immerse myself in the programmes at Yong Siak and see my old neighbourhood come to life through literature was quite special for me.”
For those hungry for more SingLit, they can look out for the popular Sing Lit Cloud printers coming to a location near them. The printers will be rotated to new locations starting this month. Further updates can be found here.
Likewise, #BuySingLit book vouchers are valid till the end of August 2019 for redemption. They can be redeemed at participating bookstores that include Books Kinokuniya, Popular, MPH, Times, BooksActually, City Book Room, Grassroots Book Room, Woods in the Books and more. The full list of participating bookstores can be found on the #BuySingLit website, buysinglit.sg/participating-bookstores/.
The #BuySingLit movement is supported by the National Arts Council, with the Singapore Book Council as secretariat, and DDB Group Singapore as the official advertising agency.
Click here to download Annex A (#BuySingLit 2019 Post-Event Press Release)