In conversation with Elizabeth McMahon, two of South-East Asia’s most exciting new literary talents take to the stage to discuss their captivating stories that focus on the lives of women today. Indonesian writer Intan Paramaditha’s Apple and Knife is a collection of fiction that swerves into the supernatural to explore the dangers and power of occupying a female body. Singaporean author Sharlene Teo’s atmospheric Ponti is told from the perspective of three women and examines friendship, memory and guilt.

Sharlene Teo (International)

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Sharlene Teo is the winner of the inaugural Deborah Rogers Writer’s Award for Ponti, her first novel. She is a PhD student in Creative and Critical Writing at the University of East Anglia, where she received the Booker Prize Foundation Scholarship and David T.K Wong Creative Writing award. She holds fellowships from the Elizabeth Kostova Foundation and the University of Iowa International Writing Program and was shortlisted for the 2017 Berlin Writing Prize.

Intan Paramaditha ()

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Intan Paramaditha is an Indonesian fiction writer. She received a Ph.D in Cinema Studies from New York University and is now teaching media and film studies at Macquarie University. Her short story collection, Apple and Knife, was translated by Stephen J. Epstein and published by Brow Books. She is the winner of Kompas 2013 Best Short Story Award, and her new novel, Gentayangan, was selected as Tempo Best Literary Work for Prose Fiction.

Elizabeth McMahon (Australian)

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Elizabeth McMahon is an associate professor in the School of the Arts and Media at the University of New South Wales. She researches and writes in the areas of Australian literature, women's writing, gender and sexuality, and island studies. Her recent book Islands Identity and the Literary Imagination won two major awards in 2017. She has edited several collections on Australian writing with her colleague Brigitta Olubas, the most recent on Elizabeth Harrower in 2017. Brigitta and ELizabeth are currently preparing a new collection on Antigone Kefala for publication in 2019. She has edited Southerly, Australia's oldest literary journal, since 2007.