Thursday, July 29, 2010


I had a good discussion with my agent. He gave me feedback on the first 50 pages of my new novel. In a word to describe the first 50 pages: useless. Well, maybe I'm being too harsh, but he didn't think those first 50 pages should start the novel. He said it was all exposition. Start with action, action, action!

The funny thing is I know this. This was the same note I got with my last novel. These are "throat-clearing" pages. Now, that it's clear, maybe I could start anew. Here is the first paragraph that I wrote this morning.

Chapter One

"It was never my intention to be a father, let alone be a father to a sick child. My wife wanted a baby and I’d do anything for her. Through my ups and downs as a writer, she’d stuck by me. Now, she wanted this. She wanted to be a mother. We adopted because we can’t have any of our own. If I’d known our son would be sick, I wouldn’t have done it. Frankly, I wanted to give him back."

Friday, July 23, 2010

Kind Rejection

I got my first rejection for my short story collection this week. It was truly the kindest rejection I'd ever gotten. The editor said he was familiar with my work and he enjoyed my last book, but he chose to pass on this project.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Libraries in the News!

(Writer Naomi Hirahara speaking her mind)

I hosted a press conference on the library cuts in Los Angeles. The LA Weekly covered it. Read here.

It also made the news. Here's the video (with me getting a little ticked).

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Un-Slam The Doors-Keep Our Library Open: A Protest Rally at Central Library

Where: Central Library Fifth Street Entrance When: Monday, July 19th at 9:30 AM

On Monday, July 19, for the first time in our library's history, the Los Angeles Public Library is ordered to shut its doors on Mondays to our patrons, including our city's children. Because of the Mayor's budget cuts and layoffs, a two year hiring freeze, and retirements, our library is now reduced to five days a week service (Tuesday thru Saturday).

This Monday closure is a historical, unprecedented cut to the library and is the first sign of the Mayor and City Council's sweeping blow to the rest of our city services.

In protest, city workers and library supporters of all ages are staging a rally, demonstration and program at Central Library on the first closed Monday of the budget cuts. Distinguished speakers and local slam poets will be featured. We are united in our call to city leaders: Restore our library's hours! Restore our library's services! Restore our library's programs!

I'm hosting this baby! I'll be there with D'Lo, Imani Tolliver, Naomi Hirahara and more!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It Begins...

My agent started sending out my manuscript to publishers. Breathe in...out.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


I had the pleasure of visiting Linda Smith's studio. Her work is colorful, overwhelming, loud. It is both a ballad and a scream. "Breathtaking" is on overused descriptor, but I finally understood the meaning of that word when I saw her art. I walked through her studio, a place that held canvasses from the 1980's, and felt a sense of awe.

It is always a pleasure hearing how an aritst creates and why. The above video is only a glimpse of the two hours that we shared eating, talking and laughing.

Check out her website here.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Look at what I found...

This hobby is really making me happy...and broke. Seriously, I'm really seeing all of the beautiful things in the world and how people just give them up. Or get tired of them.

I found one lovely painting and on the back read, "For my honey, Happy Birthday, I Love you!!!"

Perhaps there was a break-up and this source of beauty became a source of pain. It was discarded, and now I have it. I have their moment, when times were good. I framed it.

I have another painting that reads: "To: My 'Precious' friend Vicky. Love Always Holden." It's dated 1920. Decades later, I wonder about Holden and how he still loves Vicky. Always, he wrote. That's a very long time.