Even though the Singapore government censors a lot of gay themes in the arts, there are still many gay writers in Singapore. (My poetry collection “last boy” has major gay themes, but it still won the Singapore Literature Prize in 2006.)
The first time we held IndigNation, our queer cultural festival in 2006, we organised a queer literary reading called ContraDiction. I was a performer then; every year since that I have been a curator and organiser.
My friends and I decided to create a collection of writing by Singapore’s LGBT writing. We decided to include writing in all our national languages. So, in “GASPP: a Gay Anthology of Singapore Poetry and Prose”, we have poems, fiction and non-fiction in English, Chinese and Malay.
The book was not banned. Instead, the government told all the major bookstores that it was investigating the book. This meant they were afraid to carry the book on their shelves, so we didn’t sell so many copies. Now, the ban seems to be lifted, and our print run has sold out.