10/24/15: Princeton Public Library’s Local Author Day

This Saturday, I’ll be at Princeton Public Library for Local Author Day.  I’ll hold a workshop at 10:45am and then give a short reading at 3:20pm.  Parts of Love Love take place in Princeton, so I’m very much looking forward to participating in this excellent community event!  The flyer below can also be downloaded in PDF format.

DATE/TIME: Oct 24 2015 – 10:45am – 11:45am

Finishing Your Novel: A Four-Pronged Attack

Author Sung J. Woo offers advice and insight on the writing process and discusses the four practical techniques that helped him complete both his novels.

LAD

Something Good in Goodreads

I came across a review of Love Love in Goodreads…and it’s very kind and thoughtful.  The writer is a guy named Larry who not only read my novel but was inspired enough to write something about it.  He’s got a blog and has reviewed many other books and movies (his review of Inside Out is so closely aligned with my own view that I almost feel like I wrote it!), so check it out.

Larry’s review in Goodreads | Blog

sou

Love Love Book Tour, October 2015

The tour continues this month, where I return to my alma mater, fly to Austin for the Texas Book Festival, spend an evening in the Big Apple, and conduct a workshop in Princeton (where parts of the book are set!).  Note: I was going to wrap in the Wells College reading into my Cornell visit, but that’s been rescheduled for the spring.  So the tour will extend into 2016!

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 Love Love Book Tour, October 2015

(see the itinerary in Google Maps)

Thursday, October 8 5pm
Buffalo Street Books
The Dewitt Mall
215 N Cayuga Street
Ithaca, NY 14850

Saturday, October 17
Texas Book Festival
Austin, TX
12:45-1:30pm – On Motivation with Jami Attenberg and Sloane Crosley
9:30-10:15pm – Exquisite Corpse presented by Slice Literary & PEN America

Thursday, October 22 7pm
ADOPTING AN IDENTITY
with Lee Herrick, Tracy O’Neill, and Matthew Salesses
Asian American Writers’ Workshop
110-112 West 27 Street, Ste. 600,
New York, NY 10001

Saturday, October 24
Princeton Public Library
10:45am – Finishing Your Novel: A Four-Pronged Attack
1pm – Local Author Day

9/27/15 7pm: The Eagle and the Wren @ BookCourt, Brooklyn, NY

The first leg of my book tour comes to a close at the gorgeous BookCourt, by way of The Eagle and the Wren Reading Series.  Huge thanks to Adrienne Brock and David McLoghlin for inviting me.

Sunday, September 27 7pm
BookCourt
The Eagle and the Wren Reading Series
163 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201

ew

9/24/15 7pm: The Book Cellar @ Chicago, IL

The plane-assisted portion of the September book tour ends here in Chicago, which I’d visited a year ago for Skokie and Nile Township’s Coming Together event.  Can’t mention Chicago without mentioning Mike Dikta, can I (or anyone)?  Please come on by, all you fine people of Chicago.  Go Bears, go Cubs!

Thursday, September 24 7pm
The Book Cellar
4736 N. Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60625

95.9 FM, the Fish, Driving Through Beverly Hills

bh

I’m driving a rental in L.A.  It’s a Ford Focus, the cheapest thing I could find.  Still has way more power than my Prius, so I still feel like I’m redlining every time I press the gas pedal.  This Focus has Microsoft SYNC, which is supposed to make connections to smartphones via Bluetooth bulletproof, except my phone, for whatever reason, will not connect.

So I’ve been relegated to listening to the radio.  After clicking through the channels, the one I found I liked the best was 95.9 FM, the Fish.  I found myself liking just about every song from this station.  It might be because many of them have these soaring melodies, almost Jim Steinmanian (that’s the guy who wrote those Meatloaf sagas, plus Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” etc.).  And then the DJ came on, Delilah, and she was talking about such deep, meaningful things, about the difficulties of life, the elusiveness of salvation, how we can find ourselves in this confusing universe of ours.  Wow, was this a cool station or what?  So very different.  Must be an L.A. thing.

And then came on a commercial about a movie I’d never heard before, War Room.

On the outside, Tony and Elizabeth Jordan seem to have it all—great jobs, a beautiful daughter and their dream home. But their appearances are deceiving: Tony relishes in his professional success and flirts with temptation, while Elizabeth resigns herself to increasing bitterness. Their marriage is on the verge of crumbling until their lives take an unexpected turn. When Elizabeth meets Miss Clara, she challenges Elizabeth to create a battle plan of prayer for her family by establishing a “war room.” This new film from the Kendrick brothers is a vivid reminder that prayer is powerful weapon.

The next song that came on was Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus Take the Wheel,” and then I finally realized I’ve been listening to a Christian Rock station.

One strange thing about me is that I hardly ever listen to the lyrics of any song.  If I like a song a lot, then I’ll eventually pick up on the lyrics, but even with those, it’s entirely possible I just learn the words on a pure sound level; i.e., my brain isn’t actually processing anything.

Even stranger?  I’m still listening to the Fish.  What can I say, I like the music.

L.A. Stories

There are a lot of billboards in L.A., which probably comes as no surprise to anyone, since it’s a large city with lots of people.  What I did not know until I got here is that almost all the billboards are for TV and movies.  Here’s a collection.

I guess it makes sense, since Hollywood is the town’s biggest export.  But it’s just a little strange.

Speaking of strange — I took a drive up Sunset Boulevard this afternoon and climbed up Doheny Road, which led to the Doheny Estates.  Here are some photos from that little drive.

Initially, I found them impressive.  But as I kept seeing these monoliths of wealth and power, they creeped me out.  These people have such a ridiculous amount of everything…while on the streets, I see beggars, homeless people, mentally unwell people (the usual trifecta of the severely disadvantaged).  The L.A. elite live high up, like kings and queens atop their castle, looking down at the city, at their subjects, I suppose.  I don’t know.  We all know the world isn’t fair, but wow, you really see it here in Los Angeles.

It was on this drive up that I experienced one of my quintessential L.A. moments.  Because I was following my GPS, and because the road was very snaky, I was going slightly under the 25-MPH speed limit.  Right behind me was a guy in sunglasses in an Audi who was absolutely livid, and it was hilarious.  Hands flailing, head shaking, gesticulating wildly, he was like Ari Gold of Entourage come alive (“LLOYD!”).  When I finally signaled a right, he made a “good riddance” gesture, at which point I gave him a slow, measured wave.  I’d caught him off-guard — the whole time, he’d been assuming I was such a tourist dolt to witness his little angry show.  That earned me a very firm bird flip from this very L.A. gentleman.

My final stop in the evening was Venice Beach, which was quiet and dark and lovely.  I could listen to the breaking of waves all night long.  I’d read they had a boardwalk, but it’s really more like board asphalt.  How can they call it a boardwalk if there are no boards?  Maybe I’m just being a stubborn New Jerseyian, but when I think of boardwalks, I think of Seaside Heights, Point Pleasant, Atlantic City.  Real boards, made of wood!

Let’s just call L.A. an interesting place and leave it at that for now.