Wednesday, April 15, 2009

BC About the Author: Jamie Ford

Jamie Ford is the great-grandson of Nevada mining pioneer Min Chung, who emigrated from Kaiping, China, to San Francisco in 1865, where he adopted the Western name “Ford,” thus confusing countless generations. Having grown up near Seattle’s Chinatown, he now lives in Montana with his wife and children, two boys and two girls (where he’s on a never-ending quest to find decent dim sum).

Ford went to art school in Seattle to become an illustrator, and ended up an art director/copywriter. He won the 2006 Clarity of Night Short Fiction Contest, was First Runner-Up in the 2006 Midnight Road Reader's Choice Awards, and was a Top-25 finalist in Glimmer Train's Fall 2006 Short Story Award For New Writers. Ford’s been published in The Picolata Review, and his fiction is online at Flashing in the Gutters and Fictional Musings. +/-
He’s also an alumnus of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and a survivor of Orson Scott Card's Literary Bootcamp.

His debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet was this year in January. In Ford’s words, he describes the inspiration for his book:

“It really started with the ‘I Am Chinese’ button, [which was] this thing my father mentioned wearing as a kid. There was a bit of an identity crisis in the International District in the wake of Pearl Harbor. Many Chinese families feared for their safety, especially as the FBI was rounding up prominent members of the Japanese community. It piqued my curiosity and really led me to research the whole period. . . .

I lived in Ashland, Oregon, until I was twelve, and one of my best friend’s fathers had been uprooted as a child and sent to a camp in Arkansas. I never knew that until I was doing my research and saw that he’d written a book of poetry about his camp experiences (five actually). His name is Lawson Inada --- he’s now Oregon’s Poet Laureate, by the way. We were able to reconnect and he was kind enough to read an early version of my manuscript.”
Visit his offical website here.

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