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Good news comes in twos apparently! My short story “Saving Sourdi” will appear in another anthology this fall, LITERATURE TO GO, and I’ve received good news about my novel, Dragon Chica, which is about the family in “Saving Sourdi.”

So what’s the Dragon Chica news? Updates mostly, but the good kind. I now know a little bit about the cover design and I received advance book catalog copy from GemmaMedia, the publisher.

My editor, Trish O’Hare, liked the photo that I shot of a friend of mine posing as Nea, the protagonist of Dragon Chica (as well as the narrator of “Saving Sourdi”) and so we’re going to use the photo on the cover!!! I sent it to the designer,  and I’ll be very excited to see what the final design looks like! (I’ll definitely post it when I know!)

In the meantime, here’s the photo:

Nea from my novel, Dragon Chica

Also, here’s the advanced book catalog copy. This is meant to be a very short summary of the novel’s plot that will appear in the publisher’s catalog to let buyers (bookstores and libraries, for example) get a quick sense of the story.

[Headline] A funny, bittersweet love story about a refugee teenager coming of age in the American Midwest

[plot summary]

Nea Chhim, a Chinese-Cambodian teenager, flees to Texas as a refugee from the Khmer Rouge regime when a miracle occurs.* Although her family has been struggling to support itself, they now discover that a wealthy aunt and uncle have managed to make it to America as well. Nea and her family rush to join their relatives to help run a Chinese restaurant in Nebraska. But soon Nea discovers their miracle is not what she had expected. Family fights erupt. Then a forbidden love** threatens to tear them all apart.

Dragon Chica follows Nea, an indomitable character in the tradition of Holden Caulfield, Scout Finch and Jo March, as she fights to save her family and herself.

[*Note to readers: Although it doesn’t say so in the catalog copy right now, there’s actually more than one miracle. First of all, there’s an apparition of the Virgin Mary in the permafrost of a freezer case in a QuikMart near Nea’s home in East Dallas. That leads to the discovery of the second miracle: living family members! And not just an aunt and uncle, but a RICH aunt and uncle with a palace! Okay, the palace is actually a business, a Chinese restaurant  named The Silver Palace, and it’s located in a small town in Nebraska, but a palace is a palace is a palace. And miracles are miracles.]

[**Another note to readers: Since there’s more than one miracle, you can bet that there’s going to be more than one case of forbidden love, too. That’s the only hint I’ll give you for now. 😉 ]

As for my other good news, the new anthology, LITERATURE TO GO, will be published by Bedford/St. Martin’s this fall around September or October. I’m very happy that people like the story “Saving Sourdi” so much. I hope that people will enjoy reading about Nea and Sourdi’s adventures in Dragon Chica–there’s really a lot more to tell about this family, believe me!

For updates and info, follow @Dragon_Chica on Twitter

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