Sarah J. Carlson

Contemporary Young Adult Author

Category Archives: Uncategorized

Portaits of Southeast Asia: More Cambodia


More photos from my first adventures in photographing people.

Caught this little boy floating.

Caught this little boy floating.

Riding past a village set up near a tourist destination.

Riding past a village set up near a tourist destination.

Kids selling wooden flutes to tourists.

Kids selling wooden flutes to tourists.

Also, just for fun, a portrait of a temple dog!

Temple dog outside Ta Prohm.

Temple dog outside Ta Prohm.


English writing on the wall (in Viet Nam)


English writing on the wall (in Viet Nam)

I took this today after getting of a boat on a tour of the Mekong Delta in Southern Viet Nam, about 3 hours outside Ho Chi Minh City (aka Saigon). This was written on a wall inside the somewhat sketchy building we docked at. Can you find the faded face painted in the corner?

Opening that email from your editor….




Okay, so it’s not actually 123985 changes… Just 2100 on a 180 page single-spaced document. Eek! Heart palpitations! Actually, that’s part of why I’m writing my third post in 24 hours. I’m having a hard time looking at more than a page at a time. So overwhelming and scary! Especially since one suggestion was to consider cutting one of the two POV characters and having only one POV!

I sent this away three weeks ago and got it back today. This was specifically “development editing” which means it’s meant to look more at overall structural things and I was specifically looking for cultural and linguistic feedback. I’ve kind of skimmed through it a bit and it appears she’s also made quite a few punctuation suggestions. Bonus.

Anyway, that’s what I paid her for, right? So….

ImageOkay, let’s do this!

Have you ever used a professional editor? What was your experience like?

Happy Memorial Day, American friends!


ImageTo all my American followers, and really I guess anyone else who wants to remember those who died in wars, happy Memorial Day! And happy official start to summer 🙂  I’ll celebrate vicariously through you as A) its not Memorial Day in Singapore and B) there really aren’t any discernible seasons here.

What are you up to today?


On being the token Yank, an introduction



Image from though apparently the website got hacked.

(Holy crap that eagle is scary. Don’t mess with America or he’ll eat your soul! Seriously though, I’m a nice American, not a scary one)

My Husband: So I just got offered a position in Singapore. What do you think?

Me: Um…is that by China somewhere?

No, no it is not. Well, I mean kind of it is, I guess. Relatively speaking….

Anyway, many steps later, we’re living in the tiny island nation of Singapore (see map below). A few quick boring demographic notes about Singapore: 74% Chinese, 13% Malay, 9% Indian. There is also a sizable population of Westerners here as well, mostly brought in by companies to do specific jobs, and a large number of foreign domestic workers and foreign workers here to do construction jobs. Most people speak English (mostly the British variety, but mixed with American vocab) or Singlish (a mix of a variety of dialects including English, Hokkien, Tamil, Malay, and Cantonese).


Over here in Singapore I just don’t know many Americans, even though I’m sure there are plenty. I hang out mostly with English, Scottish, Australians and a few locals who also speak the British variety of English. Weird, right? Travel to the other side of the world to hang out with people from a different side of the world. It’s amazing how similar we seem when surrounded by Asians haha.

Anyway, being surrounded by people who are NOT Americans has taught me quite a lot about the United States. I was over here during the government shutdown. Try explaining that fiasco! Um, no actually President Obama can’t just restart the government…  It’s also helped with my writing tremendously. Stay tuned for all my random musings and observations on the topic.!

Next post topic: Things my British friends say that I wish I could

Have you ever experienced being the token______? What were some of the things that really struck you?