As a Chinese immigrant to Canada, I am always aware of the cultural differences between new immigrants and local residents, and of the cultural shocks to both Canadians and Chinese in various situations. Working as a cultural ambassador, I travel and teach in universities both in China and Canada . . .
As an emerging writer, I am very grateful to have this opportunity to receive editorial feedback and professional advice. I am particularly excited to be working with Sonnet L’Abbé. Sonnet’s approach to ethics and poetics has been a foundational influence for me, so her insights and guidance will be invaluable.
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With my mentor’s guidance, I’m confident that I’ll emerge from this program with an extraordinary work of fiction. Beyond this, I hope to gain techniques and establish writing rituals that will enable to me to continue to improve as a writer long after the mentorship ends . . .
Back in 2012, I wrote a non-fiction essay about why so many people from the diasporic Vietnamese community made their living as nail salon workers. As the daughter of nail salon entrepreneurs, I was curious to know the answers myself.
I hope this mentorship helps me bring my manuscript to the best of its potential, and that I learn a lot from my mentor about editing poems and structuring a collection. Having come from prose writing into poetry, I have often been told my writing was too expository, so I hope to find a balance between keeping my voice and rhythm and paring down the verbiage . . .
I hope this mentorship will provide me with some much-needed perspective on my work and help elevate the novel to a point where it’s ready for publication and will have real impact for women who read it . . .
A mentor is a combination of patient teacher and great psychologist. They don’t just say, “Good, keep going”, they tell you what needs work, they answer craft questions, and they pay attention to your neuroses. I expect being mentored will feel like giving my work its strongest ally . . .
I’ve been working on this novel for over five years in what has largely been a solitary pursuit so to have the opportunity to work one-on-one with my mentor, Melanie, is a very welcome development! I am certain that Melanie’s expertise and the support of Diaspora Dialogues will have a tremendous benefit on my understanding of both the craft and business of writing . . .
With the guidance of my mentor, Sharon Bala, I plan to work through the process of revising my novel manuscript. I hope to tighten the manuscript so that it aligns more closely with my vision for the work, and to deepen my exploration of its themes and questions . . .
At this point, I am at a juncture where I can’t decide how to proceed with my manuscript. I hope I will come out of the mentorship as a more skilled, experienced and confident writer.
My manuscript arose from a voice in my head repeating a phrase over and over again . . .
Tekkin’ Back Tongue, is a self-directed writing residency cum poetry manuscript born of churchgoers routinely pleading the Accra sky until 4:30 am, in a palpable residuum of colonization, slave dungeons and a turbulent Gulf of Guinea . . .