tv [untitled] December 30, 2011 1:01am-1:31am PST
outside. there was a deli. a lot of people outside and i say, gosh, did [inaudible] they are in love and i'm sitting here alone trying to keep dry from the rain. they have an umbrella. what am i going to do i'm all alone xi think. may be they are not so happy. ever think of that? [music] i think to myself --
he said, thanks. i knew better because i thought, next time he'll ask me something more interesting than the time. [laughter]. [applause]. okay. so, we have 2 more songs for you this evening. this second to last song is a beautiful song. it kind of is a folk song people know. probably when you hear it you know it if you heard yiddish songs before. it's talking about a little
so much for being a fabulous audience. i hate to say goodbye but i must. come to the jewish music festival. there are appetizers and there are amazing evening planned for you. come and be a part of it learn about yiddish. if this interested you at all come and learn more. there is so much richness no matter if you are jewish or know yiddish. there is so much to learn and enjoy. i hope you enjoyed. i want to give a thanks to john. [applause] [inaudible].
[applause] and i want to quickly say i have some cd's down dollar. one more song. one more song. thank you. so, i wanted to say really quick i have cd's if you want to purchase them. [laughter]. [laughter] wow! i never gotten so -- um -- so, thank you. anyways i have cd's if you are interested i have cards and bios and cd's please, sign up.
you guys want to -- so, there is a little song that some people know that you have seen before. a little song by a kind of food, right. and none of us like it if you had it or we tolerate it because we have to. i happen to be allergic, lucky for me! but now i sing this song because that's all i can do. put your hands together again. [music] ♪[laughter]
on the same page is our monthly actually bimonthly book club that the library sponsors. this month, march, the book of the month is the samari gardens. how many are you have read this book in >> that's fabulous and gale is blushing in front of me. it's my pleasure to introduce gale. gale was born and raised in san francisco.
her combined ancestory a chinese mother from hong kong and japanese father from hawaii gave her a unique asspect much the language of threads, dreaming water and others. please, help me welcome gale sukiama. [applause] >> so that means if you have read the book you will not be buying the book? [laughter]. i'm always feel a little embarrassed because i looked back and i kept think thanksgiving book was published in 1993 who wants to hear about it now? i feel honored that we call it those in the know or good friends of mine call at this
time energizer bunny. it's the book that somehow kept going all these yeersz. i will tell you up front it was a book i thought that may be they wouldn't publish. my very first book was women of the silk. i knew that i was writing about something that was a little bit different because i didn't know about the women of the silk until i wanted to write something telling their story much the second book is the test book for us writers you hear that a lot where the publishers are wondering if the author has a second book. everybody here i feel sitting here all of you have one book in you. whether it's a family story or your story whether it's ancestors whether it's your history you want to write about. but it's the second one that's hard. i felt that when i turnod the computer and thought, now i have to write book number 2. i had in mind that i wanted to
write something very different from women of the silk that was strictly about the feminist chinese women during the turn of the century and i wanted to write about my japanese culter. i didn't have the story or the culture unfortunately because i was born in san francisco, half chinese and half japanese but raised in the chinese culture. when it was time to write the second book and i knew i wanted to explore my japanese side it was going to be difficult in the way that i didn't know the culture. right away i had to learn a lot. it was something that was not engrained in me besides the story. i sat down and thought about the
story my mother told me about her brother being ill. he at one point went from hong kong to japan to recuperate. he was the one that wanted to be an artist and wanted to paint. i thought about that because it must have been hard growing up in hong kong to be far away from everything and have a dream and get sick at this point. i thought u is there a story here? that's the way it begins for writers. people think things jump out and we have it in our head. it's the opposite we have nothing in our head. we turn on the machine and praying for something to come. with women of the silk i researched for 6 amongs and read and read and read. in one book i found 2 lines about the woman silk workers and
knew immediately that's hai wanted to write about. it came to me like a dream that every writer prays for that you just knew you wanted to write about this. with the second book it was difficult i sat down and didn't know what i was going to write for about 6 months. which was fearful for me because of the fact i knew i didn't have the second book. steven's story, i asked myself questions. a lot of writers do that that's usually how i begin. what did he do? who did he meet when he got off the train? who was this man servant? what was his life about? it all began with the seeds and the particular questions, as simple as that. although, then, i had to answer them. what i had done is i usual low don't work with an out line. a lot of writers do they will out line what will happen and
sometimes they have to because like if you are writing a mystery you need to write out the plot. i write about characters the characters drive the story. when that hatched i sat down and said, what happens is, a, he arrived and gets off the train what's going to happen. >> i know z, he would get on the train and leave at the evented book. i didn't know the alphabet in between. i was nervous and i took one step at a time very japanese like. i began to study and read everything i could find on the japanese culture. the incredible thing was not having everything that went into it and it still became a quiet book. there is a tsunami. there's tv and lep easier and a fire. i call it my zen book i think
it's because as i was learning about the japanese culture, all of that started to go into the book. and it gave me the structure of what the book would become, which was very much taking after what a japanese garden it. early on a read about gardens. you don't know where you are going you just read. because japanese gardens are a huge aspect on the culture i started reading on gardens. i love the natural and the idea on how they use the gardens and how much it reads to them i started reading. i read a line like the silk worker line where it embraced me and i thought, that's what i would write about. you never walk from the front gate to the front door in a straight line it's always a curving path in which you discover things along the way. i said, that's it. he lands, he gets off the train
and slowly he would walk down this path and discover the story of this caretaker along the way. it began to move. but, you know, when i speak of it it seems like it's simple. it was not simple. this month of thinking about things. this is times of writing things down and thinking it doesn't work. and i'm incredibly fortunate i have a writer's group i have written with and shown my work to for the last. we are trying to figure it out on the way over. i brought some of the audience with me. this is what you do when you are a writer. you never know who will come who read a book in 1985 so you bring audience with you. when did we get together? then we thought, how old are we? we can't be that old.
we have been together pushing 20 years, is it? something like that. they have seen things from the very beginning of my career. and they have told me thing in which i could just kill them for. down the line it's like water off my back. not that i don't listen:the difference is everything they tell me i know it for my own good like a member of your family like your mother or brother would tell you or somebody who loves you a lot tells you. you may not like it but you take it. so many of the books are their books because that. even though when i'm not writing because sometimes they don't see the entire book all the way through because i'm rush to get it. but they are so there because as i'm writing and turn on the computer they are sitting on my shoulder.
i hear them say, don't do that. or, if you do that, you will be in trouble when you bring did to the group. it's the learning process and they have done that with me for every book. with women of the sill ik they were good in helping with that and samurai of the garden i thought they would say, what's she doing. >> i'm writing a quiet book about a japanese seaside village and the man has tb and the woman had leparcy. it doesn't matter. my editor doesn't get to see it until it's finished but these ladies do. even if she said put it in your drawer and take it out when you are 80, which is around the corner, it would be fine because they wouldn't say they liked it if they didn't kind
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