Friday, April 15, 2016

Global literature students get hands on history

My annual pilgrimage to a class at Warner Pacific University that's freshly read Dai Sijie's Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress again brought hundreds of years of book history to the fore using Dai's sweet story as a launchpad.

If you have not read the book, it's a pleasant short read detailing two teens' adventures of re-education far from their urban and familial underpinnings. Their story is one of many stories, and includes many stories in itself—indeed, the friends survive, evolve, and grow stronger through storytelling amid turmoil and uncertainty.

Speaking of stories, I am into the really, really weary stage of publishing my how-to bookbinding manual and adventure tale, which means it's the step toward the home stretch, and the printer. Latest quandary is whether to crank up some Kickstarter for the first print run.

In the meantime, I keep busy checking last facts and line wraps (right), all part of the glorious editing life. I also help the art director brainstorm cover concepts (below). Referencing the traditional Chinese color for scholars, the cover for China under the Covers probably has to be some shade of indigo and perhaps xian zhuang, bound in silk thread.