For the last few years, I’ve written annual goals, reflecting on the previous year, and it’s extremely helpful. I used the Writer’s Workbook 2019 by Annette Gendler, and also used her workbook last year. You can download her workbook for free by going to her website and signing up for her newsletter, which comes rarely and has good information in it.
In reviewing 2018 and 2017, I made note of two milestones I want to remember. They are both readings, and they were both videoed.
- In 2017, I read from one of my essays at The Library of Congress, as part of the Smithsonian Asian American Literature Festival. It was a tremendous experience, and the readings were recorded. Mine begins at around 1:18. You’ll hear a bit of poet and Executive Director of Kundiman, Cathy Linh Che, introducing me. It’s the largest audience before which I’ve read.
- In 2018, R. gave his first reading: before an audience of 700. Here’s the link. He’d never done anything like that before. He was in a show called Listen to Your Mother, and he had to write something original and audition to earn a spot in the cast. R’s piece was very moving, and I’m proud of him for venturing so far outside of his comfort zone. The reading is much shorter than mine. Feel free to comment—I’ll pass along any words to him.