Jamie Ford is the great-grandson of Nevada mining pioneer Min Chung, who emigrated from Kaiping, China, to San Francisco in 1865, where he adopted the Western name Ford, thus confusing countless generations. Ford is an award-winning short-story writer, an alumnus of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and a survivor of Orson Scott Cards Literary Boot Camp. Having grown up near Seattles Chinatown, he now lives in Montana with his wife and children. Visit him at jamieford.com
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In a video profile and text Q&A, Jamie Ford discusses his first book, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet
Where did the idea for Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet come from?
It really started with the "I Am Chinese" button - this thing my father mentioned wearing as a kid. There was a bit of an identity crisis in the International District in the wake of Pearl Harbor. Many Chinese families feared for their safety, especially as the FBI was rounding up prominent members of the Japanese community. It piqued my curiosity and really led me to research the whole period.
From there I wrote a sliver of a short story, really nothing more than a vignette, and I submitted it to the now-defunct Picolata Review, where it was ultimately accepted. A few weeks later I was accepted to an intensive, immersive, week-long literary boot camp run by science fiction and fantasy writer Orson Scott Card - where we literally read and wrote fifteen to seventeen hours a day. It was while attending that camp in Virginia that Scott inspired me to write what he termed "a noble romantic tragedy." That story was called "The Button," about a Chinese boy (Henry) that tried to prevent his best friend (Keiko) from being taken away. I ...
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
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