Memoir

Returning to Sardinia

This October I will return to Sardinia.   According to legend, the island was founded by Sardus, a son of Heracles. But who is Grazia Deledda? That is what I’d rather know more about as I read her 1913 novel, Reeds in the Wind.   Just beginning her novel, I am struck by its beauty–not(…)

Subversions into the Green Hills of Songpan

As a young boy, I only had two ambitions. The first was of being a cowboy in the Wild West, riding lonely mountain trails, eating peyote, consulting Navajo shamans, and pilfering forgotten ghost towns. The other was to go to China like Marco Polo exploring its wilds and cities along the Silk Road in search of the real General Tso, the great Qing Dynasty soldier-statesman made famous by Chinese takeout menus the world over. But never in my wildest, childish hallucinations could I have imagined that I would discover an amalgam of these in reality, as if a chapter in the story of my life became a chimerical tale of the Far West.

Will reading the book Wired for Story really make you a better storyteller?

In my 36th year as a would-be and penniless writer, I found myself exiled to a dark rough and tumble city in the Far West, guns blazing as a steely-eyed wordslinger for hire.  But then one day I stumbled upon Lisa Cron’s Wired for Story. The book’s first pages caught my attention.  But alas, the(…)

It’s All About Image

I don’t remember ever planning on just being, much less being in Chengdu or even being a writer.  Yet here I am.  As an American in China I have hard time reconciling the fact that I had to come all the way to China in order to find freedom and success in the way H.D.(…)