In contrast to using network contacts to create opportunities to publicize my books as described in the three previous posts, I occasionally receive out-of-the-blue contacts related to my books. The past month provided a bonanza of new publicity and opportunities. For example, a few weeks ago, a friend who I had not seen for many years, Penny Brown, called to ask if I would come to a book club discussion of my memoir, Southern Fried Rice, at a chapter of the American Association of University Women on May 9. Fortunately, I would be just returning the day before from Portland where I was giving two talks so I was happy to ne able to accept this different type of format and audience.
My Portland talk started out on the wrong note; the auditorium kept its computer locked in a cabinet, and it took about 10 mins. to find the proper key to unlock it so I could present my slides. So, I dodged a bullet there, (and this was not the first time I’ve had such near death experiences). I did not know that the Portland Chinese Times covered my May talk on Chinese laundry history until I saw the article below. Even though I can’t read Chinese, I am confident that some people who can will find it of interest.
The next evening I addressed the Portland Chinese high school graduating seniors at a Chinese banquet, and while there was no press coverage of my talk, I was pleased that the audience of 90 grads and their parents which exceeded 200, my largest audience ever, found my message of value!
A few days before my Portland talk about Chinese Laundries, I received a timely ‘fan mail’ from a writer-journalist in New Delhi, Solveig Bang, who wrote:
“I was thrilled to come across your website during a search for “Chinese laundries,” and read many of your entries with great interest. I have now ordered your books Chinese Laundries and Sweet and Sour and am looking forward to their arrival. I am a South African but lived in Hong Kong for almost a decade where I worked as a journalist on the South China Morning Post.”
And, she was nice enough to send me visual evidence that the books arrived this week!
Then, last week, Emma Wang, a writer for a national Chinese newspaper, World Journal, e-mailed me to request an interview about my books. We met the following day for an hour to talk about what my books were about. Then the following day, she published an overview of our discussion (in Chinese, of course).
Even though I don’t read Chinese, I did figure out that in the last line of the article, she did include a plug for my upcoming talk at the Rosemead, CA. library on May 23, from 6:30 to 7:45.