Authors

Famous Authors from Singapore

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List of the most popular authors from Singapore, listed alphabetically with photos when available. For centuries authors have been among the world's most important people, helping chronicle history and keep us entertained with one of the earliest forms of storytelling. Whether they're known for fiction, non-fiction, poetry or even technical writing, the famous Singaporean authors on this list have kept that tradition alive by writing renowned works that have been praised around the world. You can find useful information below about these notable Singaporean writers, such as when they were born and where their place of birth was.

Authors here include everything from Cyril Wong to David Leo.

This list answers the questions, "Which famous authors are from Singapore?" and "Who are the best Singaporean authors?"

For further information on these historic Singaporean authors, click on their names. If you're a bookworm then use this list of celebrated Singaporean authors to discover some new books that you will enjoy reading.
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1
Pao Kun Kuo is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Kuo Pao Kun was a playwright, theatre director, and arts activist in Singapore who wrote and directed both Mandarin and English plays. He founded three arts and drama centres in Singapore, ...more
2
Haresh Sharma is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Haresh Sharma is a Singaporean playwright. To date, he has written more than 100 plays that have been staged all over the world, including Singapore, Melbourne, Glasgow, Birmingham, Cairo and ...more
3
Leslie Charteris is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Señor Saint, Knight Templar, Thieves' Picnic
Leslie Charteris, born Leslie Charles Bowyer-Yin, was a British-American author of adventure fiction, as well as a screenwriter. He was best known for his many books chronicling the adventures ...more
4
Newton N. Minow is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Inside the Presidential Debates, Presidential television, How vast the wasteland now?
Newton Norman Minow is an American attorney and former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. His speech referring to television as a "vast wasteland" is cited even as the ...more
5
Glen Goei is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Glen Goei is an actor, film producer, film and theatre director.
6
Lee Kuan Yew is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
From Third World to First: The Singapore Story: 1965-2000, Singapore and the Asian Economic Boom, The Singapore story
Lee Kuan Yew, GCMG, CH, informally known by his initials LKY, was the first Prime Minister of Singapore, governing for more than three decades from 1959 to 1990, including through Singapore's ...more
7
Catherine Lim is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The Bondmaid, The serpent's tooth, The teardrop story woman
Catherine Lim Poh Imm is a Singaporean fiction author known for writing about Singapore society and of themes of traditional Chinese culture. Hailed as the "doyenne of Singapore ...more
8
Michael Chiang is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Army Daze
Michael Chiang is a prolific playwright and screenwriter in Singapore. He is known as "Singapore’s most famous and successful playwright". From 1990 to 2009, Chiang was the editorial ...more
9
James Lee is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The Mystery of the Man Who Had to Die, The Mystery of the Unlucky Undertaker, The Mystery of the Missing Movie
James Lee is a Singaporean author.
10
Sinnathamby Rajaratnam is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The Prophetic & the Political: Selected Speeches & Writings of S. Rajaratnam, S. Rajaratnam, 2002-2003 MAT
Sinnathamby Rajaratnam, better known as "S. Rajaratnam", was a Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore from 1980–85, a long-serving Minister and member of the Cabinet from 1959–88 and a ...more
11
Goh Sin Tub is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Ghosts of Singapore!, One Singapore, 30 stories
Goh Sin Tub was a well-known pioneer of Singaporean literature. He was a prolific writer of numerous book titles, which includes bestsellers like the The Nan-Mei-Su Girls of Emerald Hill, The ...more
12
Arthur Yap is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
A brief critical survey of prose writings in Singapore and Malaysia, Thematic Structure in Poetic Discourse, Man
Arthur Yap Chioh Hiong was a Singaporean poet, writer and painter.
13
Chay Yew is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The hyphenated American, Porcelain, Red
Chay Yew is a playwright and stage director who was born in Singapore. As of 2007 he lives in New York City. In July 2011, he became Artistic Director of Victory Gardens Theater, Chicago.
14
Rani Moorthy is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Rani Moorthy is a Malaysian-born playwright, actress, and artistic director of Rasa Productions. Following the race riots of 1969 her family tried to emigrate to Singapore, but were unsuccessful ...more
15
Chua Lam is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Chua Lam is a columnist, food critic and occasional television host in Hong Kong and Japan. He was also a movie producer for the Hong Kong movie studio Golden Harvest.
16
Rex Shelley is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Culture Shock! Japan, Sounds and sins of Singlish, and other nonsense
Rex Anthony Shelley was a Eurasian Singaporean author. A graduate of the University of Malaya in Singapore and Cambridge trained in engineering and economics, Shelley managed his own business ...more
17
Kelvin Tan Wei Lian is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
All Broken Up and Dancing
Kelvin Tan Wei Lian is a blind Singaporean Mandopop singer who earned a living as a busker before he won the first edition of Project SuperStar in 2005. He has released three albums, All I Want ...more
18
Tommy Koh is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The United States and East Asia, Asia and Europe, Tan jiu shi jie zhi xu
Tommy Koh, DUNU, is an international lawyer, professor, and a diplomat from Singapore. He was also the former ambassador to the United Nations.
19
Han Lao Da is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Han Lao Da is a Singaporean playwright, as well as founder and principal of Han Language Centre. Han received the Cultural Medallion for his contributions in the Singaporean drama scene, and is ...more
20
Philip Jeyaretnam is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Raffles place ragtime, Abraham's promise, Tigers in paradise
Philip Antony Jeyaretnam is a Singaporean lawyer and novelist. He is a Senior Counsel and a former President of the Law Society of Singapore. He is the son of J.B. Jeyaretnam, who was a ...more
21
Chee Soon Juan is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Dare to change
Chee Soon Juan is a Singaporean politician. He is currently the leader of the Singapore Democratic Party. A figure in Singapore's political opposition, Chee has been arrested and jailed several ...more
22
Goh Poh Seng is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
The Immolation, If We Dream Too Long
Goh Poh Seng, Singaporean dramatist, novelist, doctor and poet, was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaya in 1936. He was educated at Victoria Institution in Kuala Lumpur, received his medical degree ...more
23
Gopal Baratham is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
Figments of Experience, A candle or the sun, The city of forgetting
Gopal Baratham was a Singaporean author and neurosurgeon. He was known for his frank style and his ability to write about topics that were often considered controversial in the conservative ...more
24
Russell Lee is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
True Singapore Ghost Stories Book 3, True Singapore Ghost Stories Book 6, True Singapore Ghost Stories Book 7
Russell Lee is a Singaporean author best known as the creator of True Singapore Ghost Stories, a series of books that has been among the most popular source of ghost stories in Singapore, ...more
25
Ng Yi-Sheng is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Authors from Singapore
SQ21
Ng Yi-Sheng is a Singaporean gay writer. He has published a collection of his poems entitled last boy, which won the Singapore Literature Prize, and a documentary book on gay, lesbian and ...more