The participants loved the
workshops. These were
some sample comments:
“Thank you so much for
this lovely workshop.
Looking forward to similar
opportunities … This
was a much needed
distraction during a
dicult time. Thank you
for this interesting
Making a Positive Impact on
The success of GIAG encouraged us to run
Sunday Sentence, a translation game open to all,
on our website. Every Sunday for eight weeks,
we posted a short passage from a Chinese story
on the site, inviting visitors to attempt their own
Give-it-a-Go (GIAG) Translation Workshops
In line with our mission to help translators
(especially those starting out in their career)
produce better translations, we partnered with
Leeds Centre for New Chinese Writing and
oered an essay by Deng Anqing as a piece for
first-time translators of all backgrounds. We were
delighted with the response. Within a ten-day
deadline we had a total of 124 submissions from
twenty countries and five continents. The Paper
Republic team ran four lively online workshops
over one weekend. Our short video about the
process can be viewed here.
The resulting collaborative translation, Forty
Days in Quarantine: How a month in isolation
brought me closer to my parents became number
five in the Read Paper Republic: Epidemic series.
In 2019 to 2020, we ran two series of free-to-
view non-fiction pieces.
In Read Paper Republic: Dispatches2 (March-
October 2019), we chose eight essays by excellent
Chinese authors, commissioned translations and
editors, and published them in partnership with
One-Way Street Magazine (单读) and the Los
Angeles Review of Books’ China Channel. The
topics ranged from stories of fortune-tellers, to
corpse preservers and children’s home orphans.
In March and April 2020, we ran Read Paper
Republic: Epidemic, in which we chose some of
the most interesting writing by Chinese writers
emerging from Covid19 lockdown: the six pieces
were by turns angry, thoughtful and very personal
responses to the crisis, and varied in format from
diary entries to reportage to poems.
In December 2019, we posted our annual rollcall
of Chinese fiction and poetry translated into
English. In addition to keeping our database of
Chinese literature up-to-date, we collate and
publish a year-end rollcall of all the translations
published in the previous year. This is an
opportunity to draw media and reader attention to
new books, as well as to add our own commentary
on recent trends.
Field Guide to Contemporary Chinese
The Field Guide provides an overview and limited
index to contemporary Chinese literature. Begun
with an initial grant by the British Council, it is
being completely re-written from an earlier
unpublished draft. The new Field Guide will be
geared towards a general audience who know little
or nothing about Chinese writing. The goal is to
publish an online version by the end of 2020, and
a print version shortly after.
2019 2020
Our mission at Paper Republic is to identify
the very best new Chinese writing – and
promote it to English-language readers.
We commission, edit and publish short fiction
and essays online.
We host an extensive database that provides
bibliographic information on Chinese writers
and their English translators
We get people talking about Chinese literature
– online, and in events.
We help translators produce higher-quality
translations – by providing education,
information and resources. We also organize
translation competitions, mentoring, and
residencies for emerging translators.
We are run by a team of seven volunteers.
“Paper Republic fills an
important gap, creating a
one stop shop for people
who want to know about
contemporary Chinese
Rose Fenton, Chair of Judges,
Literary Translation
Initiative Award
London Book Fair, 2016.
views of our Give-it-a-Go
translation promotional
video on Facebook.
visits to the Read Paper
Republic: Dispatches essay
emerging translators from
all over the world who
participated in the Give-it-
a-Go translation workshop.
people who Facebook-
clicked on Hide, Hide,
Hide! By Yan Geling, in the
Read Paper.
Number Crunching
“On Searching for Bodies by
Ma Jinyu, one reader
wrote, “Absolutely
delightful, hadn't realized it
is written by a young
woman... so now want to
know more about her.
Deliciously cruel. We really
want more of that kind of
One reader commented:
“So many people around
the world are experiencing
such isolation, if not always
in such cramped quarters.
For them to see this side of
the Chinese experience…
the word ‘heartening’
comes to mind.”
Making a Positive Impact on
One participant said:
“Sunday Sentence is such a
fun way to get people
interested and involved in
literary translation. Keep
up the good work!”
Translator residencies and training in China
We are currently laying the groundwork for
further online mentoring and workshops,
including translator residencies in China, to be
followed by a full-scale translation summer
Thank you to all our supporters and
volunteers who are helping us to raise the
quantity, quality and visibility of Chinese
literature in English translation. We couldn’t
do it without your support.
Fundraising underpins everything we achieve as a
charity. Last year, we received a mixture of regular
and one-o donations (see Summary of Our Year’s
Accounts: Overview, below). We are also grateful
for the support from Leeds Centre for New
Chinese Writing, the LA Review of Books’ China
Channel and One-Way Street Magazine, which
has allowed us to continue our work on the Read
Paper Republic series.
Our volunteers have donated translations for the
Read Paper Republic Epidemic series, time to
support emerging translators, and energy to help
us run our launch party.
Our priorities for next year
The Field Guide, an introduction to Chinese
writers for the general public
Residencies, for translators to spend time in
China, hosted by bookshops
Personal mentorship, translation games open to
all, and group translator-training, online and
Producing lists of the “best translated short
pieces” and “best untranslated short pieces”, and
commissioning translations of the latter
Partnering with other literary websites to
translate and publish more short, free-to-view
Where your money will go
The management team at Paper Republic work as
volunteers. All donations go towards running the
charity and funding the projects we do to deliver
our mission. By donating to Paper Republic you
are helping to:
Pay specialists who make our work possible
(including translators and editors, translation
teachers, book designers)
Subsidize participants’ travel and other expenses
in translator-training events
Pay project managers to run our larger projects
The PR Team
This year we welcomed several new members to
the Paper Republic management team, and with
great regret said goodbye to some of our founder
members: Chen Dongmei, Helen Wang and Dave
Newly arrived are: Yvette Zhu, Jack Hargreaves
and Dylan Levi King, joining Eric Abrahamsen,
Nicky Harman, Emily Jones andYao Lirong.
We all continue to work as volunteers.
Our Supporters and Partners
During the year 2019 – 2020, we worked with
Leeds Centre for New Chinese Writing and the
Stephen Spender Trust in the UK, Los Angeles
Review of Books China Channel in the USA, and
One-Way Street in China. These partnerships
have helped us to broaden our connections to
academic and translation communities, to reach
wider readerships, and to strengthen our position
as a key bridge between the literatures of the
Chinese- and English-speaking worlds.
“We wouldn’t be able to
have achieved any of what
we have done so far at
Leeds without Paper
Republic – from
translation competitions,
workshops and ideas for
events, and the database
project. And probably most
important of all, the
constant advice, support
and promotion from you
all. It never ceases to
amaze me how much
goodwill and dedication
there is and how much
time and eort is
volunteered by you all.”
Dr Frances Weightman,
Associate Professor of Chinese
Studies, Director of The
Leeds Centre for New
Summary of Projects 2019 - 2020
General outreach and fund-raising
London party night
Providing resources for readers
Read Paper Republic
Field Guide to Chinese literature [ongoing]
For Leeds Centre for New Chinese Writing:
Symposium on genre fiction in October 2019,
Nicky and Emily attended as PR representatives
For Stephen Spender Trust: sourcing Chinese
poems for Stephen Spender Trust Young
Translators Poetry Translation Prize
Mentoring, training translators
With Leeds Centre for New Chinese Writing, we
ran Give-it-a-Go Translation (GIAG)
⼀周⼀句 – Sunday Sentence
We laid the groundwork for a Residency for one
translator in China, in partnership with the
Librairie Avant-Garde (先锋书店), Chenjiapu
Summary of Our Years Accounts
In the 2019-2020 fiscal year, we have a total net income of £11,506 and total assets
of £4,585 by year end. We have no funds which are materially in deficit.
Our main source of income are individual donations (55%) and project funding
Main expenses this year went into registration legal fees and online translation:
Translation & editing fees of £4,733 for Read Paper Republic project.
Legal service fee of £1,800 for registration of the CIO.
We registered as a Charitable Incorporated Organization on 28th February
2019. Our governing document is our Constitution, available on request
Our financial year runs from 1st April 2019 - 31st March 2020. Exceptionally,
because we registered as a CIO on 28th February 2019, this report covers the
period from 28th February 2019 to 31st March 2020.
Our Trustees
Robina Pelham Burn
Vivian Wangzhen Ni
Xinna Wang
Eric Abrahamsen (Chair)
Emily Jones
Nicky Harman
UK Registered charity number 1182259
25 Park Avenue, Chelmsford, CM1 2AB
Tel: 07970514499
If you can make a
financial contribution to
these projects, and to our
work in general, please
contact us at info@paper-, or hit the
Donate button.