Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I’m a first generation Asian American currently living in Chiang Rai, Thailand. I have been living overseas since 2009 and I’ve lived in not only Thailand, but Ecuador and Cambodia. During this time, I’ve been teaching English, exploring SE Asia, and avidly blogging and writing at Life, the Universe, and Lani.
I self-published my first book, the missing teacher in 2015, which retells my conflicting experience in the world of Waldorf education and how I recovered from it. The audiobook is available on Soundcloud and Gumroad.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book is called Misfortune Cookie: an Asian American journey. It’s the book I’ve always wanted to write, and I finally got around to doing it!
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
No, I don’t think so. What’s unusual?
What authors, or books have influenced you?
I’m a bit “all over the place”, so this is a challenging question to answer. And what I mean is, I read everything – I don’t read within a genre or two.
That being said, I have loved Agatha Christie ever since high school. I also grew up reading YA romance books, fantasy and popular fiction. But back to Agatha, I liked how much she revealed through characters. She’s not overly descriptive either. Sidney Sheldon did this as well, so I think as a result, I’m a pretty straightforward writer.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on finding my second memoir a home. So I’m in the middle of researching, querying, and waiting. It’s a strange time between finished writing (and editing – but is it ever done?), and publishing. There is so much to do, and yet, there’s nothing to do.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I’ve been too scared to self-promote so I’m new to trying different avenues. But so far, my blogs have been my most effective way to reach readers.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write because you have to, because you love it! And be okay with “the story is never finished” – this applies not only to letting go of your manuscripts, but also to your writing journey.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
I’ve read so much writing advice I don’t think I can chose just one. I think the right advice shows up at the right time during the whole process.
What are you reading now?
Right now I’m obsessed with Piers Anthony’s Xanth series. I’ve been reading the books one right after the other which is kind of crazy because I’ve never done this before!
What’s next for you as a writer?
Fame, fortune, you know, the deal.
Actually, I have some new ideas percolating – always.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
What a horrible question. I can’t choose. I can’t bring my Kindle because I’d run out of battery, so that’s out.
I guess the Island of the Blue Dolphins because that was my first book love – and it seems wildly appropriate.
Secondly, I have The World of Jeeves by PG Wodehouse by my bed which I’m borrowing from a friend. It’s a collection of his Jeeves stories, so I think that would be entertaining and they are funny – funny’s good when you are stranded.
Or maybe I’d take the Lord of the Rings trilogy – nice fat reads, good escapism.
Really, down right horrible question.
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