Vanessa Hua, "Just Like Us"

It's December 3. Vanessa Hua, author of Deceit and Other Possibilities, always follows the posted speed limit. 

How would you describe your story?

VANESSA HUA: A coming of age, mother-daughter road trip.

When did you write it, and how did the writing process compare to your other work?

VH: Awhile ago, after my husband and I went camping in the redwoods. A summer weekend for us, but a form of housing for others, I soon realized. The writing process didn't differ my usual process: submitting drafts to my writing group and trading it with my critique partners. Revise, revise, revise.

What kind of research went into the story?

VH: I incorporated the landscape I've seen in my travels, and I also looked into the particulars of truck campers.

What, to you, makes the short story a special form? What can it do that other kinds of writing (novels, poems) can't?

VH: The precision and economy, and how it can turn on a moment or gesture and yet still bear a narrative power.

Where can people go to learn more about you and your writing?


What's on your Christmas list this year?

VH: Time to read the great works I've picked up while on book tour, and possibly our children's first trip to Disneyland.

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What did you think of today's story? Use the hashtag #ssac2016 on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to check in with your fellow advent calendarians.

Michael Hingston