In 1984, I moved to China to teach at Xiamen University. As a child and young adult, I’d done four one-year stays in Europe, but Asia was so foreign it completely blew my mind. I started interviewing fellow-travelers for a book about our experiences and two or three years later handed a fat manuscript over to a literary agent. After maybe six months she returned it. No market. One mainstream publisher said they’d love to do my book, but they had just done three books on Asia from a western perspective and they were all financial disasters. The agent was moving from New York to Hollywood in order to work with screenwriters.
So okay, I could see my editing job hadn’t been thorough enough. I revised and added chapters on South Korea, where I was teaching at the time. A bit later I reused the Korea stories as cross-cultural subject matter for a textbook for Korean students of English. It’s posted on the site for free download.
In 2009, I had a developer in Oregon set up a website for me, and I started posting recent interviews from Korea and a lot of the old China material. All this was new to me, but I soldiered bravely on, mostly without anyone to offer advice or guidance, until about three years ago when I found another developer who’s ben a big help.
There are now over 250 posts on the site, mostly from interviews on personal experience of living in Asia. The idea is to give readers a sense of what life might be like for them if they found themselves in similar circumstances.
Now I feel I need a break, maybe for two or three months. I’m suffering from some health problems—not life-threatening—and I need to use what little energy I have to work on finding a publisher for my novel. Hopefully, I’ll see you all soon. In the meantime, if you have any suggestions about future posts, please write via the website.
All the best, Carol