Monday, 11 March 2013

Jittery nerves

G'day, hello, bonjour! I've always loved telling stories, but as a child, I was discouraged from pursuing a career in entertainment and in the arts. Looking back, my looks and weight meant that in all reality, I would have been typecast as Porky Pig.

The people who say that money isn't everything clearly have a safety net to fall back on, whether it's their family, friends or the State. I used to think like that, too, but as life moved on, I could see that people with money were, on the whole, better off than those without money. So for me, it was imperative that I earned a decent wage, which I did as soon as I could.

Once I realised I could stand on my own, I found myself wondering whether this was it. Was I destined to not tell stories anymore? I found myself realising that I loved the sound of my own voice too much.

Fate intervened in November 2012, when an adaptation of the celebrated ancient Chinese play Orphan of Zhao that was produced by the RSC controversially featured just three actors of East Asian descent in supporting roles. An international outcry followed, some soul searching was done, and questions were asked, the main one being, 'why are British East Asians invisible?' Thanks to the British East Asian Artists Facebook page, and thanks to a lot of comments and articles posted by my fellow Brits of East Asian heritage, I came to realise that racism against East Asians is present, but so subtle indeed. I also found that a question was getting flung back at the East Asian community from the wider community: why are there no British-born writers of East Asian descent of note? Once there's decent writing and writers around, the reasoning went, the actors would follow.

That got me thinking about the quote by Gandhi: 'You must be the change you want to see in the world.'

With all that mind, here is this blog, which will find its way. I am also in the middle of writing some novels, so watch this space!

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