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20: Daughter of Xanadu, early copy

Daughter of Xanadu: In my hands at last!Daughter of Xanadu, in my hand

Today, December 22, the day after Winter Solstice, a package arrived at my front door with three precious copies of the final version of Daughter of Xanadu, the version that will go on sale January 11.  As you can see, once I got my hand on it, I could not let go!

It feels terrific to finally see this book, which I have worked on for so long. Just in time for Christmas.

Welcome to this world, Emmajin Beki!

- December 22, 2010 -

31: Three enthusiastic reviews, one month to go

Find out about the blog tour

Wow. Daughter of Xanadu's publication date is only a month away! I can't even add up all the years I spent on this novel, the number of versions I wrote, the number of people who reviewed various chapters. To say nothing of the number of books I read as research, the number of miles I traveled to visit locations where the story took place, or the number of friends who asked "How's the book coming along?"

Now I have a terrific agent, Michael Bourret of Dystel Goderich Literary Management, and the ideal editor, Michelle Poploff of Random House/Delacorte Press. Emmajin is finally ready to appear on the public stage.

Just this week, Daughter of Xanadu received three enthusiastic reviews from online blog reviewers. Check December 31 blogpost on this page for details. 

I am now contacting blog reviewers for a blog tour Jan. 10 - 21.  That means that each of those days, one online reviewer will feature an author interview with me about this book. Any bloggers who want to join the tour, please click on "contact" above to send me a message and let me know of your interest!

- December 11, 2010 -

49: Snow and another new book in 2011

NEWS: Another new book in 2011

What’s new?  Snow! And ice!  Traffic tie-ups! Abandoned cars! “La Nina’s First Punch,” The Seattle Times headline reads. Snow in Seattle

Publication of Daughter of Xanadu is less than 50 days away now. My weekly to-do list of promotion/publicity actions has gradually ebbed to a manageable size. Two review copies are making the rounds with online blog reviewers, and I’ve submitted to Random House the names of many teachers, professors, librarians, and other influential book lovers, so they’ll get early copies of the book, perhaps before Christmas.

In the meantime, I’ve switched my focus to my “Work in Progress,” which is tentatively titled Chinese-Americans in Seattle: The Second Wave.  For this book, I interviewed

Read more: 49: Snow and another new book in 2011

37: What was Marco Polo like?

What was Marco Polo like?

We have only a few clues about Marco Polo’s real personality.

From what Marco wrote in the prologue of his book, we know that he was great at learning languages, including Mongolian and several others. His mom died when he was very young. His dad was absent for most of his childhood, then turned up when Marco was fifteen and insisted Marco go on the next long journey with him.

Arriving in China at the age of 21, Marco Polo impressed Khubilai Khan, the most powerful ruler in the world. He claims that the Khan sent him on several imperial missions and asked him to  “give an account in a pleasant and intelligent manner of all the novelties and strange things that he had seen and heard.” Marco pleased the Khan so much that

Read more: 37: What was Marco Polo like?

55: Now on Wikipedia and Huffington Post

NEWS: Now on wikipedia and Huffington Post

I just received news that wikDori portrait 3577ipedia has a page about me, Dori Jones Yang. I've been told that wikipedia is very strict about posting pages about living people, so it's a big honor. Getting on wikipedia is increasingly difficult these days, because wikipedia's (unpaid) keepers are sensitive about charges that the information on wikipedia is sometimes inaccurate or self-serving. So now the doorkeepers are only letting in a few. For reasons I don't fully understand, they did not mention Daughter of Xanadu, since it is not yet published. Still, it's nice to be in the door!

This week also marked another first for me: Huffington Post published an opinion piece I wrote. It's advice to parents, recommending that they

Read more: 55: Now on Wikipedia and Huffington Post

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