Emma Larkin is the pseudonym for an American writer and journalist who writes widely about Asia, and most notably Burma, from her base in Bangkok. She studied Burmese at the London School of Oriental and African Studies and has been visiting the country for close to fifteen years. Larkin's first book, the political travelogue Finding George Orwell in Burma, recounts the year she spent travelling through the police state using the work and life of Orwell as her compass. Her latest book, Everything is Broken, looks at life in Burma in the months following the disastrous Cyclone Nargis and interrogates the brutal totalitarian regime that clung to power in its aftermath and compounded the devastation of its own country.

Steven Gale is an arts and education manager based in London. He has worked at theatres in England and Scotland, and taught at universities in Ireland and the United States. He was assistant artistic director at the Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh for six years, and assistant director to the renowned Spanish theatre director Calixto Bieito on two acclaimed Edinburgh International Festival productions, Life is a Dream and Barbaric Comedies. Steven has previously chaired events at literature festivals including Edinburgh, Cheltenham, Cambridge, Brighton and Sydney.