Friday, February 28, 2014

fortune cookie friday

"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage."
- Lao Tzu

Thursday, February 27, 2014

it's official!

There is going to be a fourth Ling and Ting book! As announced in PW:
Alvina Ling at Little, Brown has bought the fourth book in Grace Lin's Ling & Ting early reader series starring identical Asian-American twins. Together in All Weather will be published in spring 2016; Rebecca Sherman at Writers House brokered the deal for North American rights.
Yay! This is pretty great! The third book, Ling and Ting: Twice as Silly (which I think is the best one so far)  comes out in November so having this fourth book under contract is great encouragement. Now can it be called a series?

Monday, February 24, 2014

on my desk monday

Even though the Starry River of the Sky paperback book came out a couple of weeks ago, I just received my copy!

It looks even better than I thought it would! And I completely forgot that in the back of the book, they gave a "sketchbook peek," reproducing some of the sketches I did for the book:

As well as a little excerpt of  Where the Mountain Meets the Moon.

If I'm lucky and the book stays in print, maybe someday it will have a little excerpt of the novel I'm working on now!

Friday, February 21, 2014

fortune cookie friday

"Defeat is never a bitter brew until one agrees to swallow it."
— Chinese Proverb

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon hits the stage in the Bay Area!

If you are in the Bay Area, go see Where the Mountain Meets the Moon onstage! I found this video clip with a sneak preview and I really wish I could go!! It opens THIS SAT!!

Min Kahng, the playwright and composer of this production, has also been tweeting images like this:

Oh my gosh, doesn't that look awesome? Did I mention how much I wish I could go?

I will, however, be going to see Boston's Wheelock production in April (I plan to be there for the April 11th and the April 12th shows, there might be a booksigning or something, stay tuned) and I am also going all the way to Hopkins, MN to see the Starry River of the Sky production there (the plan is to be there for the May 3rd show, I think there might also be a booksigning--will let you know!). I am SO, SO thrilled that I will get to see these shows, at least! 

But, if you can, please see the Bay Area production and tell me what I am missing!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

What We're Reading Wednesday

I Say, You Say Animal Sounds!
By Tad Carpenter
(LB Kids, Board Book, 9780316200738, 18pp.)

Indiebound Description:
I say, "Reading!" You say, "Fun!" Explore the noisy barnyard with 8 lift-the flaps. These colorful, playful books encourage interactive learning through prediction and repetition; but most importantly, they look really fun. --Dr. Robert Needlman, co-founder of Reach Out and Read and author of Dr. Spock's Baby Basics

My Thoughts: 
Huge hit here at home! I began reading this to Rain Dragon before she was making any kind of recognizable words or noises. The first day she picked up the cue and "woofed" at the right time, I think I might have burst with motherly pride!

Monday, February 17, 2014

on my desk monday

On my desk is a brand new usb drive, a gift from the Sasquatch:

This is actually a very, very thoughtful gift as every time I start a new novel, I usually buy a new usb drive for backing it up.  For the last few novels, I've been buying "themed" drives to help me remember which files are on which drive.  So, what this really means is that I've finally begun a new novel! And the turtle shape is very appropriate, but you'll have to wait to find out why!

Can you guess which novels were on these drives?

Friday, February 14, 2014

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Big head

Recently, I did a couple of fun Skype visits:

Taking a group photo via skype was a first for me!

One of the schools even made a lovely video about the event:

4th Grade Skype with Grace Lin from Rodeph Sholom School on Vimeo.

Isn't that lovely?  Right now I only do free ten minute Q&A sessions, but these were so fun that I'm thinking of offering longer programs--especially with the weather being so horrible, it's nice to connect with readers without having to leave the house and wearing pajama bottoms! Hmm, maybe I can let kids choose which pajamas I wear as part of the program....

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

What We're reading Wednesday

Everything Goes Blue Bus, Red Balloon: A Book of Colors 
By Brian Biggs
(Board Book, 9780061958144, 22pp.

Indiebound Description:
 Learn about all the colors of the rainbow with flying, floating, zooming vehicles

My thoughts:
Fun! Great illustrations, I really enjoy how Brian Biggs'  "Everything Goes" series is kind of a new modern update on Richard Scarry's Cars and Trucks and Things that Go! Especially love the cast of diverse characters--something that I really have to search for in board books.

Rain Dragon's reaction:
Rain Dragon likes looking for the balloon in each picture. At least I think she does. She points at it in each spread and says, "Boon up! Yah, Yah!"

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


Starry River of the Sky is available in paperback TODAY!

Even though this book didn't win any awards,  Starry River of the Sky was my best reviewed book (6 stars)!  So, I am very proud of it. In fact, I might go on record and say that I think it is the best book I've written. And the softcover has been printed with the same attention to detail as the hardcover--in full color with 10 full page illustrations!  So, if you've been waiting for the paper back, well, here it is!

Monday, February 10, 2014

on my desk monday

It's the year of the green horse! I've made these little writing/creativity paper horses to share with my friends as well as a snake...more on this later!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Thursday, February 6, 2014

New Year Gold

The other day, a surprise package came to our house. Since neither I nor the Sasquatch were expecting anything, we were quite curious. What was it?

Of course, Rain Dragon had to open it!

It was New Year gold! It was a box of fresh oranges from Paradise, what has become a traditional gift from librarian Mary Wong. And a very much prized and delighted at  yearly gift, I must add. This was Rain Dragon's first experience with the delicious oranges and she was very excited:

I had to explain that they taste better with the "wrapper" off.

As I mentioned earlier, oranges are super lucky for Chinese New Year. It's because the Chinese word for luck is a homonym for the word "wealth"--receiving oranges means we should receive wealth in the New Year!

We definitely feel richer already! Thanks, Mary!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

What We're Reading Wednesday

It's a new year! One of the things that I'm sorry I haven't been able to keep up with on this blog is my Booktalk Tuesdays--I just don't have as much time to read as I used to! Actually, I take that back. I don't have as much time to read by myself as I used to. I do a lot of reading now, but it's all with Rain Dragon and mainly board books. But some of these board books I love! Some she loves! And sometimes, every once and a while, we both love! So I've decided to try to start What We're Reading Wednesdays, where I'll feature the book(or books) that we're reading non-stop.

Today, I'm featuring two board books written by a former teacher of mine, Mary Brigid Barrett. She sent them to me as a thank you for participating in the Literary Lights event at the National Book Festival, but I should be thanking her. These books are truly superb for babies!


All Fall Down

They are some of the few books that Rain Dragon and I both adore. I love the art, especially the multicultural cast of kids and she loves acting out the words.

she's patting the potato!

and she made her blocks "all fall down!"

Pat-a-Cake, written by Mary Brigid Barrett, illustrated by Leuyen Pham
All Fall Downwritten by Mary Brigid Barrett, illustrated by Leuyen Pham
(Candlewick board books, 16 pages)

Monday, February 3, 2014

on my desk monday

Did you celebrate Lunar New Year?  Did you forget? No worries, because Lunar New Year celebrations last for 15 (yes, 15) days! So you still have 11 days left!

I say this because on my desk is a just-received-copy of the bilingual edition of  This Next New Year.
The original edition of this book recently went out of print which, in my opinion is a great travesty as I think it is a Lunar New Year classic. However, my friend Janet Wong made lemonade out of the lemons and reissued new bilingual versions of them! She made it available in Chinese/English as well Korean/English, which is super-completely awesome.

What I appreciate in this the bilingual version of This Next New Year is that it does not just Chinese characters, but it also has the pinyin. This is very important for me, considering my level of Chinese skill.  Having the pinyin in the book makes it actually useful to me and I can even share some Chinese with Rain Dragon!

So many readers ask me if my books are available in bilingual editions and I always have to disappoint them. At least now I can point them to a book that is (as well be inspired for my own books in the future)!