Fabulous Review in The Japanese Garden Society’s “Shakkei”

Bonsai and Penjing, Ambassadors of Peace & Beauty Receives Rave Review!


Here’s an excerpt from the review found in the Japanese Garden Society’s quarterly newsletter, Shakkei (Winter 2016-17 issue):
“I thnk it is fair to say that all of the books I have that have been published by Tuttle are of excellent quality. However, just occasionally one finds one that is so good it ‘fair takes one’s breath away’: this book, I’m delighted to report, is one of those. . .the illustrations are excellent. That said, althought they are some of the best I have seen, they have to take second place to the text – which is superb. Throughout the book are sections headed ‘Spotlight on . . .’ covering specific individuals whose efforts have made the collection what it is today. Individuals so covered include Dr John Creech; Saburo Kato; Dr Yee-Sun Wu; John Naka; and Harry Hirao. I’d be tempted to add a ‘Spotlight’ on Ann McClellan for being the author of such a magnificent book. Do buy it – it will not disappoint!” — Shakkei, the Journal of the Japanese Garden Society.

Book Events Begin for 2017!

The Library of Congress, Washington, DC

The Library of Congress, Washington, DC


Mark your calendars! The first public bonsai book talk of 2017 with Sandra Moore and Stephen Voss will be on Tuesday, April 11th at 11:30 at the Madison Building of the Library of Congress in Washington, DC! Here’s a link to the Library’s press release: https://www.loc.gov/item/prn-17-011/library-to-host-events-in-celebration-of-national-cherry-blossom-festival-2/2017-01-27/

On Saturday, February 25th, I will be participating in the Celebration of Writers at Howard University from 11 am to 2 pm. You can meet me and other DC-area authors in the University’s Blackburn Center.

See you soon!

Last Two Bonsai Book Events of 2016!

Join Stephen Voss, Sandra Moore and me on Thursday, December 8 at 7pm at the Tenley Public Library in Washington DC for a bonsai talk or come to Roscoe’s Neapolitan Pizzeria in Takoma Park between 2:30 and 5 on Sunday, December 11 where we’ll be participating in the Takoma Park Book Fair. If you don’t catch us then, watch this space for events in 2017 — there are lots already on the books!
https://www.facebook.com/TakomaParkBookFair/

Next presentation at Tenley Public Library with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss!

Next presentation with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss!

Wonderful to see everyone who came to the National Press Club Authors’ Night where I was thrilled to share a table with Scott Farris and his book, Inga, Kennedy’s Great Love, Hitler’s Perfect Beauty and J. Edgar Hoover’s Prime Suspect. Check it out!

Next up for Bonsai and Penjing, a joint presentation with Sandy Moore and Stephen Voss at the Tenley Public Library on December 8 at 7 pm. See you there!

Bonsai -Stories, Inspiration, Art

Bonsai Authors' Panel at Japan-America Society of Washington, DC

Bonsai Authors’ Panel at Japan-America Society of Washington, DC


Sandy Moore, Stephen Voss and I presented a program called “Bonsai– Stories, Inspiration, Art,” about our respective books each reflecting a facet of the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at the Japan-America Society of Washington, DC. Looking forward to our next venue, the Tenley Public Library on December 8 at 7 pm!

Come to Our Bonsai Presentation on November 15!

The Yamaki Pine, renowned as a Hiroshima survivor, will be a focal point of the November 15th presentation at DC's Japan-America Society.

The Yamaki Pine, renowned as a Hiroshima survivor, will be a focal point of the November 15th presentation at DC’s Japan-America Society.


Join Sandy Moore, Stephen Voss and me when we discuss our bonsai experiences at DC’s Japan-America Society on Tuesday, November 15 from 4 to 5 pm at the J-AS offices, 1819 L Street, NW #1B, Washington, DC. Sandy will talk about her book, The Peace Tree from Hiroshima, and Stephen will talk about his photographs that make up his book, In Training. I will provide an overview, based on the collections at the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum and my book, Bonsai and Penjing, Ambassadors of Peace & Beauty. It’s free, though registration is requested. here’s a link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfs4gLvpyUtUVZZ5SDzDBNAFwTQ6I-xCk5HF2VNzQ706ouAgg/viewform

See you there!

Whirlwind Launch, New Venue on Saturday, 10/22!

Signing a book at Aki Matsuri!

Signing a book at Aki Matsuri!


The first-ever Aki Matsuri on October 15, 2016 at the U.S. National Arboretum was a huge success. I’m already looking forward to the next one in 2017. In the meantime, there’s a new addition to my calendar of bonsai book activities: I’ll be signing books from 2 to 4 pm on Saturday, October 22 at Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens, in conjunction with a kimono trunk show put on by Arise. See you there!

Countdown for Bonsai and Penjing Launch!

Excited about next week’s launch of Bonsai and Penjing, Ambassadors of Peace & Beauty! The book will be available for sale on October 11, and the first big day of public signings will be on Saturday, October 15 when I will be signing books from 10 to 4 at the National Arboretum’s free Aki Matsuri, then from 6 pm to 9 pm at the Japan-America Society’s ticketed Otsukimi or Moon Viewing, also at the National Arboretum.

If you miss me there, come to the free DC Author Festival on Saturday, November 5th at the Martin Luther King Library, 901 G Street, NW, 10 am to 5 pm, Table B-2!dcaflogo-2

A foray into fiction . . .

While promoting Bonsai and Penjing, Ambassadors of Peace & Beauty is claiming most of my attention right now, my fiction life continues on a parallel track.  You could even say it is in what might be called a parallel universe, because my historic novel-in-progress is set in Renaissance France.  When I’m asked about this, because it seems strange to some that I have this intense interest in things French as well as in things Japanese, I say that my non-fiction world is Japanese and my fiction world is French.

Where I am with the novel is at an awkward stage.  It’s too big!  I have about 120,000 words and need to cut it to 80,000, which will equate to about 300 pages.  So, I was thrilled to be able to go to the Historic Novel Society Conference in Oxford, England earlier this month and learn some tricks and tips from experts.  In essence, I plan to start over — fairly typical for first-time novelists, I gather. Guess what I’ll be doing this November when it’s National Novel Writing Month!  In the meantime, here’s a link about the conference from the Times Literary Supplement for you to enjoy:   http://www.the-tls.co.uk/making-history/