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Jan 7, 2022


Critically-acclaimed debut author, Jean Chen Ho, spoke to me about the art of nonlinear storytelling, the shifting POVs in her novel Fiona and Jane, and the value of a strong writing community.

Jean was born in Taiwan and grew up in Southern California. She is a doctoral candidate in creative writing and literature at the University of Southern California – where she is a Dornsife Fellow in fiction – and has an MFA from UNLV.

Her much-anticipated debut novel is a collection of linked stories titled Fiona and Jane. Booklist called it "tender and timeless," a book that "...explores the intimate facets of female friendship, Asian American immigrant experiences in Los Angeles and New York, and the debilitating power of family traumas.”

Bestselling author Alexander Chee wrote, “Fiona and Jane is a high wire act. . . .Jean Chen Ho’s brilliant debut is as assured as what must surely follow.” And Pulitzer Prize-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen, called it, “A knockout of a book.”

Jean's writing has also been published in The Georgia Review, GQ, Harper's Bazaar, Guernica, The Rumpus, Apogee, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, and others.

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In this file Jean Chen Ho and I discussed:

  • Why writers shouldn't pick up their phones until noon
  • The rigors and routines of editing
  • How going to Happy Hour and talking about writing ... counts as writing!
  • The loneliness of being a writer
  • Deadlines, accountability, the importance of writing groups
  • And a lot more!

Show Notes: