A Conversation with Author Larry Smith on Six Words: Fresh Off the Boat

If you only had six words, how would you describe the story of your family, or yourself? For me, it’s something like: “Mexicana from East Oakland hustling daily.” Six Words: Fresh Off the Boat solicited stories from immigrants about their experiences in the United States. A collaboration between Larry Smith, founder of the popular Six-Word Memoirs series, and Nahnatchka Khan and Melvin Mar, creators of the ABC hit-series Fresh Off the Boat, the book includes stories of the young, the old, the famous, and the never-published-before, all reflecting a version of the American Dream. Yet their stories also shed light on how each immigration experience is unique. Emeryville attorney Huong Nguyen tells of her journey from Vietnam at age 5 in emojis. While Six Words: Fresh Off the Boat was finalized prior to the presidential election, its release coincides with the current chaotic political climate against immigrants, from the Muslim ban to the ending of the DACA program. On Thursday, Smith will discuss how the collection of stories came about. There will also be a “six-word” slam at the end of the night. 

Thursday, Sept. 14, 7 p.m., free, East Bay Booksellers, 5433 College Ave., Oakland, EBBooksellers.com

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