So Bronwyn and I are off to Shanghai next week to attend the 14th International Conference on the Short Story in English (July 13-16) at East China Normal University (ECNU). The title of this year's gathering is "Influence and Confluence in the Short Story: East and West." Pretty exciting, huh?
If you're at all curious (why would you be?) about the bewildering variety of workshops and panels we're supposed to be taking part in, you can check them out here. The short version, though, is that each of us is giving a reading, is taking part in one of the plenary panels, and is chairing a couple of sessions. I'm also giving an Academic paper on "Settler & Speculative Fiction in the NZ Short Story" (sounds fascinating, no?), and Bronwyn and I are both in a panel discussing Voice in the NZ short story, chaired by our good friend Tracey Slaughter.
The conference will be fun, I'm sure. The prospect of exploring Shanghai a bit is almost equally alluring, though. Pretty much all I know about the city comes from watching (and reading) J. G. Ballard's autobiographical Empire of the Sun, but I can't help feeling that it might have changed a bit since then.
Here's the location of the conference:
Peter Potrowl: East China Normal University (2010)
And here's our hotel:
Looks pretty lux, eh? Too good for the likes of us, you'll be thinking, and I guess you're right. We're going to try to make the best of it, though. It's going to be hot (temperatures in the 30s at this time of year, I'm told) ...