Happy New Year 2021 Update

Happy New Year, Friends!

I realize as I write this that it’s already FEBRUARY!!!

So here we are. Corona virus is still wreaking havoc and we’re still being asked to do our part by avoiding large gatherings, especially indoors, practicing social distancing, and wearing masks. In the midst of this pandemic and all other unsavory goings on (e.g. attempts to overthrow the government and continued spewing of hate by racist and white supremacists), I’m feeling hopeful now that the vaccine is here and the Biden-Harris administration is in place. (Yey, Kamala! Speak!)

First, a quick look back for some book and press related highlights in November, December, and January.

In November, I was asked by Prof. Padilla of the University of Texas, Austin to speak about Jack & Agyu and social justice in children’s books and publishing. It was a nice change of pace. I love reading for kids (and their parents) and talking about the writing and publishing journey with them. But discussing with college students who are taking a course on literature and social justice is a whole different (not higher, mind you) level. I’m feeling grateful for that engagement…and for being asked to return to the spring class this April!

In December, we once again joined the Bay Area’s Social Justice Books Fair. I missed being around and getting to converse with readers looking for locally created social justice related books. However, hats off to the organizers who did a good job of substituting the fair with a virtual reading hosted by the inquisitive Mr. Limata. As of this writing, I can’t find the link to the actual interview with him so, for now, I’ll link to the FB event and flyer.

In late December, International Examiner, the oldest and largest nonprofit, pan-Asian Pacific American publication in the Northwest, positively reviewed Jack & Agyu. Antonia Dorn, the reviewer, wrote, “This book says from cover to cover that our culture and history matter, providing the reader with ways to continue the research and conversation with our youth.”

Officially, for us at Sawaga River Press, not much happened in January 2021 as we quietly celebrated the coming of the new year and dealt with the news of the turmoil of the dissidence in the Capitol. However, our gears are in motion and we are finalizing plans for our next project. We are also starting to reach out to the community for potential collaborators. If you know an illustrator who might be interested in working with us, do let us know!

Until next update! Be safe and well.

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