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Doretta Lau

Doretta Lau is a journalist and writer who was born in Burnaby, B.C. but now lives in Hong Kong.  Her journalism covers arts and culture.  Her fiction and poetry have appeared in a number of literary magazines and she is now working on a screenplay.  Her short story “How Does a Single Blade of Grass Thank the Sun?” originally published in the magazine Event was a finalist for the Writers’ Trust of Canada / McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize for 2013.  Lau studied at the University of British Columbia and completed an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University.

How Does a Single Blade of Grass Thank the Sun book cover

Fiction (Short stories)

How Does a Single Blade of Grass Say Thanks to the Sun?

Gibsons, BC: Nightwood Editions, 2014.
PS8623 .A8165 H69 2014

Publisher’s Synopsis (from its website)

Building on the success of the Journey Prize-shortlisted title story, the stories of How Does a Single Blade of Grass Thank the Sun? present an updated and whimsical new take on what it means to be Canadian. Lau alludes to the personal and political histories of a number of young Asian Canadian characters to explain their unique perspectives of the world, artfully fusing pure delusion and abstract perception with heartbreaking reality.

Correspondingly, the book’s title refers to an interview with Chinese basketball star Yao Ming, who when asked about the Shanghai Sharks, the team that shaped his formative sporting years, responded, “How does a single blade of grass thank the sun?” Lau’s stories feature the children and grandchildren of immigrants, transnational adoptees and multiracial adults who came of age in the 1990s—all struggling to find a place in the Western world and using the only language they know to express their hopes, fears and expectations.


Doretta Lau personal website[undergoing reconstruction]

Doretta Lau Facebook page

Publisher Nightwood Editions