My tai chi teacher once told me that you can only really know a person over time. The same is true of any organization.
Next year, 2014, Kaya Press turns 20 years old. From a bright idea dreamt up by the poet Walter Lew, funded by the Korean novelist Kim Soo Kyung, and developed and nurtured over the subsequent years by Juliana Koo and myself, Kaya Press has grown into something approaching an institution. We have survived tidal changes in technology, publishing upheaval, cross-country moves, and national disasters. While the rest of the world spins around in ever more complex patterns and realignments, Kaya Press has quietly persisted.
That’s the terror and beauty of aging – over time, the true nature of anything eventually reveals itself. What these past 20 years of activity have proved more than anything is the power of Kaya’s animating mission.
At the heart of Kaya Press is a fairly straightforward idea—that the world moves forward because of acts of imagination. And we’ve always believed, regardless of what other publishers, and even some writers, might think, that great writing—and a vast range and variety of great writing—can consistently be found throughout the Asian and Pacific Island diasporas.
But if Kaya has been able to thrive over the years, it is only because of people like you. People who read Kaya books, support our authors at readings and events, donate time or resources—and have remained excited about what Kaya was going to do next, even when it seemed that we might not last another year.
As we continue to grow in our new home of Los Angeles, it seems fitting to take advantage of this Thanksgiving week to give thanks to all of you for your support of Kaya Press over the years.
Each person who donates during this year will have their name printed in ALL of our 20th anniversary books, regardless of how much they give. It’s a small gesture, but we want to make visible the work that all of you put into keeping Kaya Press alive. That animating force, like breath on a cold day, is both motivation and sustenance.
With your continued participation and support, we look forward to 20 more years of publishing!
*Pictured above: Sunyoung Lee (left) with former publisher and current chair of the Board of Directors Juliana Koo (right) and author Sesshu Foster. Three long-time devotees of Kaya Press.