Author Chen Qiufan on cyberpunk, realism and Chinese sci-fi
Ever since he published his first story at the age of sixteen, Chen Qiufan, a.k.a. Stanley Chan, has been widely hailed as one of the leading figures of today's generation of China's young science fiction writers.
Translated into multiple lanagues, 'The Waste Tide' is Chen's award-winning dystopian novel that raises some serious questions such as wealth gap and environmental pollution. [Cover: Courtesy of Chen Qiufan]
From 'Record of the Cave of Ningchuan,' a whimsical tale about a multidimensional universe written in classical Chinese, to his multi-award winning debut novel, 'The Waste Tide,' Chen has a knack for combining metaphysical ideas, self-alienation, and high tech in many of his works, while at the same time, without losing touch with real life issues and problems.
Currently the President of the World Chinese Science Fiction Association, Chen Qiufan has been actively voicing his opinion on technology, speculative fiction, as well as the future of human race.
In his first ever English-language anthology of contemporary Chinese SF, Invisible Planet, Hugo-award winning American author and translator Ken Liu introduces and translates three pieces of stories written by Chen Qiufan. [Cover: Courtesy of Ken Liu]
Therefore in today's episode, our reporter Shiyu sits down with this rising sci-fi star to discuss his works and inspirations, how science fiction has fast become the greatest realism today, and also why Chinese science fiction is yet to enter its golden era.
On November 6, 2016, in a panel discussion organized by CITIC Press Group, Chen Qiufan (right) is joined by a number of tech experts and business insiders to discuss the future of artificial intelligence and the digitalization of business industry. [Photo: IC]
Their conversation will touch on (but will not be limited to) the following subjects:
How he has gotten hooked on science fiction since kintergarden;
Whether 'China's William's Gibson' is a fitting title;
His concern over the rapid development of technology;
What differentiates him and his peers from the older generation of sci-fi writers;
The overall landscape of Chinese speculative fictions;
And much, much more!
If you want to hear their complete conversation, you can download the podcast from iTunes, by searching the key words: Ink&Quill. In this extended version, you will hear Chen Qiufan talk about how to attract non-Chinese readers and his future writing plan.