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Coramendel screen Ashmolean Museum Photo credit: Karen Kao

Shanghai Noir

The Dancing Girl and the Turtle: publication date 01.04.2017

I took this photo at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. It's a great example of that surprisingly vertiginous perspective used in Chinese art to represent depth.

This has been a week of surprises for me. It started on Sunday with a radical edition of VERSO/. The concept behind VERSO/ is to transform a literary magazine into a live performance. But even so. How often does a literary reading open with a gorgeous song or close with an explosive dance performance?

On Monday, my essay for The Shanghai Literary Review went live. You can now read Memory Palace here, though I'd urge you to take a look at the entire issue no. 2.

Yesterday, my guest blog post for also went live. Notes on a Palm-of-the-Hand Story is a riff on short short fiction and the term Yasunari Kawabata coined for his own. But the truly crazy thing about this guest blog is how it came into being. Canadian editor Geoffrey Miller read my short story Moon Cakes in the Hong Kong literary journal Cha and contacted me in Amsterdam to write a piece for Nunum. Around in the world in 60 hours?

Today's blog post stays with the topic of craft, in this case point of view. POV is one of those writing decisions that will determine how a reader experiences the fictional world. Up close and personal or with some degree of emotional distance. Yet, oddly enough, POV doesn't seem to make a difference if you're a writer who happens to be female or a person of color.

And since I've got craft on the brain, here is my review of May We Be Forgiven by AM Homes. It's a fun book and a craft class rolled in one, as you can no doubt tell from the title of my book review: Gormless in Gotham (or How to Write a Micro-Scene).

But if you're tired of hearing about the nuts and bolts of writing and just want to be entertained, I've got something for you. On February 25, you can hear me read Memory Palace live at an Afternoon of Readings in the Pages Bookstore Cafe Amsterdam. And I won't be alone. My co-host Dipika Mukherjee and I have a great lineup of local writers which we'll be revealing over the course of the next 10 days. Watch this space!

Migrant Writing
Late Bloomers
Model Minority
Socialism Is Great!

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