My bookish life… Elaine Chiew

We’re delighted to begin My Bookish Life, a new series which will feature on our weekly newsletter, with writer and visual arts researcher Elaine Chiew, whose debut collection of short stories, The Heartsick Diaspora, came out in January.

How have your days changed?
As with many around the world, our routines got up-ended with my partner now working from home, and the kiddos being home for the short-term (Singapore just announced school closures). In daily life, we are doing some things different: (1) we no longer do our food-shopping on weekends, for two reasons – we are buying less each time, so as not to hoard, and we go during weekdays when the shops are emptier; we are also trying to support local businesses so we buy all our fruit now from our local fruit vendor around the corner; (2) we don’t allow talk about the pandemic at the dinner table and instead chat about what we did that day – a sharing of something learned, something experienced, something felt (or, sometimes, we do Jimmy Carr’s trivia quizzes while eating – it’s a good laugh); and (3) although we didn’t eat out a lot to begin with, now we don’t eat out at all, so this has meant a lot more of my time spent planning meals and being creative about them (which also rejuvenates the spirit). My son and I also do home-learning together (Coursera is great, and we are taking a course on Ancient Greek Civilisation together).

Read our full interview with Elaine here, and make sure to sign up to our newsletter to catch all our news and special offers. (Link at the bottom of our homepage.)