The story of how Falling from Grace (originally titled East Broadway) ended up on the screen in Des Moines, Iowa, is, itself, a film-worthy tale. 10 years ago, while making the transition from working as a stage actress in shows like Miss Saigon to work in film and television, Fay found herself disappointed by the roles available to Asian American women. "I didn't see the point to continue acting if I was only ever going to be offered the cleaning lady, the nurse, the lawyer who speaks Chinese." So, she decided to write her own script. She took a screenplay writing class and developed a romantic comedy ("I am totally a Chick Flick kind of girl") inspired by several random meetings she had with John F. Kennedy Jr. over the course of a few weeks. "I saw him on the street, in a restaurant, at the bank, he rode past me on his bike. I just saw him everywhere. It's not odd to see a celebrity on the street in New York. But I saw him A LOT in a short amount of time. I thought, is he stalking me? Am I stalking him? And when I started writing the script I wondered if someone like that--"American Royalty"--would ever date a working class girl from Chinatown."
As a final question, I asked Fay if there was some advice that the person she is today would give to the person she was before this whole journey began.
When singer-songwriter Martha Berner saw my interview with artist Paul Moschell, she told me I should to check out the work of Joe Sorrren. The minute I clicked on his website, I immediately sent off a note to Martha, thanking her for the introduction.
Finding Tiffanie DeBartolo's GOD-SHAPED HOLE will probably always be one of my favorite literary finds. That may a bit grandiose to say but it's how I honestly feel about the stories and characters that came to life in this funny, lyrical, tragic, romantic, lyrical, honest, heart-breaking and magical book. What seems to be a simple "girl meets boy" story left me feeling both devastated and hungry to fully embrace life in all its insanity, humor and grace.
Can you tell me about a bit about your upbringing and background?
As the music industry continues to evolve, independent musicians found a true champion in Derek Sivers, founder of CD Baby. Since it's inception in 1997, this online record store has paid over $80 million directly to independent musicians all over the world, with $6-$10 from each sale going to the artist, compared to $1-$2 from standard record deals with major labels.
Books mentioned in our discussion.
The E-Myth Revisted by Michael E. Gerber walks you through the steps in the life of a business -- from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective -- and works to dispel the myths about starting and growing a new business.
A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink is a guide to surviving in the fast-paced, upside-down world we live in today, proposing that the future of global business belongs to the right-brainers.
The Long Tail by Chris Anderson argues that the future belongs to those that serve the millions of untapped niche markets as well as they serve the masses. Read his manifesto to find out how unlimited shelf space and personalization can revolutionize business.
Kim and I both love to be in the kitchen and cooked a lot while living together in New York. While making daydream lists of where the Once Upon A City collection could go, we started talking about creating colorful cakes decorated with the artwork and the stories. This lead to some research on what other people were doing when cake was used as the palette and the paints were food coloring. Through this, I discovered the cookbook The Whimsical Bakehouse: Fun-to-Make Cakes That Taste as Good as They Look on Amazon.com a couple years ago and was totally blown away. What these women were doing with cake seemed like a Dr. Seuss daydream.
WHAT HAVE BEEN THE CHALLENGES AND THE ASSETS OF BEING A MOTHER/DAUGHTER TEAM?
Denver-based artist Paul Moschell is one of my favorite discoveries from the weird world of MySpace. His watercolor paintings are a delightful combination of pathos and humor and the eyes of his creations seem to hold the kind of stories you're both intrigued and nervous to hear.
Paulette the Poo Poo Face Puppet Girl would like to hear your whole life story in under 20 words.
Loud Mouth Latoya had a different question from each of her mouths so it was a bit hard to understand her at times. However, several of the mouths asked the same question: how and when did the matchbox series start?
Simple Seleena sat in quiet judgment of me for several minutes before scribbling on a scrap of paper with a quill pen. She then waded up the paper and threw it at me, walking away on an uncertain mission. In the penmanship of a serial killer, she simply wrote: why watercolor?
Suki Suki Sue smashed a fortune cookie against my forehead and let the fortune fall in my soup. I fished it out with the single chopstick she had given me and let it dry a bit before trying to read it. “When the paintbrushes are resting, what do you do to fill the time?”
Lil' Pablo quietly wanted to know what artists inspire you with their music, paintings, films, writing, food or ability to braid barbed wired without injury.
Lil Bleu Smokin Devil Boy said “vegetarians rock” and then put out his cigarette in the piece of angel food cake I was eating and walked away. Somehow he believed he had offered up her question for you. Let's just assume he'd like know how you were first inspired to become a vegetarian and how that evolution has changed your perception of the world around you.
The Lima Bean Queen insisted I ask how fatherhood changed, challenged or altered your life as an artist and as a man.
Penolope the Poodle Girl, of course, wants to know about Sybil. I think she feels a bit threatened.
Saint Sylvester laughed really, really, REALLY hard when I asked if he had a question for you. “Ask about the tattoos, man,” was all he said as he flew away. So, I'll ask. Which tattoo did you get first and how many do you currently have?
Fish Food Freida thinks you should tell us all, in a very loud and clear voice, why art is important.
The title is a lovely sentiment but, frankly, I don't know that I even believe that it's true.
When I made the decision to do a series of interviews of people that have inspired me creatively and otherwise, there were some very obvious first choices. I'm thrilled to say that in the coming weeks you will be introduced to all of them as they have all said yes to my request.
First up is Eric Himan, an extraordinary singer-songwriter I discovered by chance a few years ago. I don't know how exactly I ended up on his page on CD Baby but I immediately fell in love with his music and promptly ordered everything. As fate would have it, I was at WineFest here in Des Moines a couple weeks later and there he was, singing from the stage. I met him briefly that night and found his grace and charm to equal the passion and power of his music.
WISH YOU WOULD
UNTIL THE ROAD UNWINDS
I have iGoogle set as my homepage so everyday when I log in there's a a barrage of fun facts, games, news, etc. One of the sections is a "How to of the Day." I've never clicked on one before because sually they say things like "How to Raise Mosquito Larvae for Fish Food" or "How to Cook a Snake." ... These are not skills my current life requires.
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Begin, be bold and venture to be wise. -HoraceIf you're shy, hesitant, or passive, you run the risk of leading a boring life marked by routine and unfulfilled goals. Most progress, however, has been led by people who were bold--scientists, political leaders, artists, and others who didn't wait for opportunities; they created opportunities. So if you want to be bold and unstoppable, here are some ways to kick start your momentum.
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I am a huge fan of music, especially female singer-songwriters. As I begin to roll out the interviews with the people that inspire me creatively, I'll just warn you right now that a lot of them are girls with guitars. I make no apologies for that.
MusePaper is the place where we will discuss our journey in bringing this project to life.