We're entering Year 3 of the global pandemic, Russia invaded Ukraine, publishing is going through editorial burnout, and almost everyone I know is in a state of stress, either at a high- or low- level. It's hard to dig into our creative wells and find the mental space to write or make art at a time like this. (It's also why my bimonthly newsletter has turned into a once-every-few-months one). So how do we do it? How do we press on?
I don't have any deeply insightful advice, other than give yourself a break. Don't beat yourself up if you need a short or long pause from creative work; if you need to veg in front of the TV; or if it takes over two years (ahem) to write your latest manuscript. Take deep breaths or long walks. Here's a quote I like from my daughter's daily Zen calendar that I like:
I'm curious: what are your best de-stressors? what are some good shows you've watched lately? Recently, I've enjoyed Bridgerton season 2, Abbott Elementary, Mr. Robot, and now I'm watching The Silent Sea (a Korean sci-fi).
Cool Book News: My Dad's Memoir is Out!
An exciting thing happened in late January. I helped my dad, Bernard Liu, publish his memoir, The House Arrest of Zhang Xueliang: A Memoir of Growing Up with China's Most Famous Political Prisoner (at the age of 88!). He had published this memoir with a Chinese publisher in 2018, but we had kept the English rights. Here's the cover (design by Robin Locke Monda):
Here's the back jacket that describes his extraordinary story:
Working on this book, I learned a lot about self publishing (from buying ISBNs to registering copyrights to hiring copyeditors and designers). Maybe one of the coolest things was being able to hit "publish" and having the book available online within hours. Instant gratification!
Here are the buy links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Hana Hsu Updates (on sale June 21)
3. Pre-Order Swag
My pre-order campaign will include a signed book (if ordered from Prince Books, a signed bookplate if bought elsewhere), a bookmark, and some other flat goodies. I'll announce the campaign formally in early May, but if you want to get a jump-start on pre-ordering, here's the link to the book through my indie bookstore, Prince Books. Keep a copy of your receipt to send in when the official campaign starts. Here's a sneak peak at the bookmark:
You can also hit this button to pre-order:
And if you haven't done so, please add Hana Hsu to your Goodreads "want to read" list. This helps my publisher see the interest in the book. Thanks so much!
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