Educator, writer and documentarian based out of central China. Catch the full story at www.findthefabulist.com.
Investigating Chinese Bar Culture
One of my past employers had a lounge area in their offices that, once in a while, they turned into a nightspot. It was a strange thing, finding a bar twenty stories up in an office building, but curiosities like this are far from unusual in China. It also had a certain amount of utility for an agency that, among other things, hired out foreign entertainers - such facilities were a chance to showcase the talent for prospective clients.
Xiaolongxia: On Chinese Crayfish
If you've lived or traveled anywhere close to the American South, you're likely familiar with crayfish, the tiny crustaceans that creep around the bottoms of freshwater lakes in the American interior. Cheaper and easier to find than lobsters, their bigger cousins, they are a signature element of Cajun cuisine. Stroll through New Orleans on a summer night and you'll see pots full of steamed crayfish served with potatoes and cornbread.
An Introduction to Chinese Breakfast
Of the many adjustments Americans must make when living abroad, one of the biggest is getting used to a very different diet, and the biggest differences in diet often come at breakfast. The first morning meal served to a weary traveler may come as a shock for a few reasons. We're used to having a fairly strict divide between "breakfast foods" and "non-breakfast foods," a distinction which doesn't exist in most cultures outside of the Mediterranean. Add to that the heavy foods served in many breakfast traditions, and that first repast can be a bit of a hurdle.
Understanding Your International Chinese Students
As a teacher at any level and subject, one of the biggest challenges is dealing with students from very different cultural backgrounds. Expectations, norms and priorities can all vary across countries, and the nature of classes is going to be different wherever you go.
Five Steps to Create Your Own Hypertext Fiction
For the more experimentally-minded writer, hypertext fiction - a form of nonlinear interactive fiction using electronic documents - is a form with a lot of potential. However, creating hypertext fiction requires a set of technical skills that many writers don't possess.
Photographing the Elusive Ground Squirrel
Squirrels are, without question, one of my favorite photo subjects. The advantages are many: Squirrels are extraordinarily common in North America, they are often relatively accustomed to human presence and cuteness potential is very high.
What is Realistic Fiction? Characteristics and Style
I was born to write speculative fiction, but spec editors don't seem to share my readings of fate. After five years of trying to climb SFF mountain - short stories, novels, even nonfiction articles - I accepted my failures and moved on.
The Queen of Night
Yes, yes, I remember the song, every beast that scavenges knows the song by heart: Scurry home, ere moonrise comes; The Queen of Night, her world becomes. Scurry home, to hole and haunt; Her knives can find you in the dark, Her knives will claim the flesh she wants.
The Ocean Unseen
The inhabitants of Detriti had always held a certain romantic fixation with the gloomy shell of dense ice that defined the upper limits of their world. Ahine was not unusual in this regard, except perhaps for the depths of her obsession. As a child, she joined with many others in their gleeful attempts to break through the barrier, digging at the dark surface with broken harpoon points, old hand drills and jagged shards of flint. It was a ritual of sorts, a tradition going back a hundred generations to the earliest Detritan explorers and mythmakers. There was something primeval about it, a connection to the planetary heritage that drew Ahine back even after she deduced that the effort was futile. And when she finally set aside those childish implements for good, she did not turn her thoughts back inward as most of the others did. Rather, her own fascination only became more intellectual.