Wow, I did my country a disservice. On Monday, I’d sent off a message to the Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture, asking what sort of government aid / activities they had in support of writers and literature. I did this expecting to get a reply within a week, if I was lucky.
I got a response the next day.
Excited, I read the reply, which was in Malay even though my enquiry was in English. No problem. My grasp of the language wasn’t that terrible. I already knew I shouldn’t expect massive government grants, literature clubs and book festivals as I’d been enjoying here (erm, the festivals that is, not the grants). Still, this was an encouraging sign…
Dear So and So (my translation).
Thank you for your enquiry. Please (my addition) be informed that the Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture helps practitioners and non-governmental organisations in the fields of authorship and literature which is one of the categories under creative industry development. The help we have available are loans with low interest rates, and one-off cultural grants. For further information, please call us at–
I am feeling distinctly motivated to return to my country now.
I think it’s time I started talking to local writers back home.