Monday, August 16, 2010

The Americanization of Li Ming, by Hardy Jones

It’s interesting to read a short story in which the writer’s notes seem to be a part. I’m not sure who the really main character is in the . Is it Li Ming or is it the writer who is controlling her thoughts and life? Li Ming wants to be American and she is trying to figure out how best to do that without looking like she’s trying. The writer makes side notes about the verb tenses and whether Li Ming is Chinese or Vietnamese. It is as though Jones is making the story transparent, so the reader knows it is made up, but he still manages to make Li Ming seem like a real person you can relate to. It is her struggle for identity that seems real, which manifests in her conversation with her dead mother.The Americanization of Li Ming

This is another author I couldn’t find much on. I think primarily because his first novel hasn’t been published yet. is forthcoming, according to the publication I found the story in, Shelf Life and Will I read the novel? I’m not sure. The short story was nice. Even with the interesting style, I don’t know if it’s enough to make me get his book (I like interesting styles). Though the blurb at the bottom says his work has appeared in “over twenty journals” it doesn’t say which journals, which is disappointing. Overall, I did really enjoy the short story and it piqued my interest in his work. I just don’t know if it did it enough. The lack of available content on Hardy Jones as well as readily available work makes me think that he will be forgotten.Every Bitter Thing

Note: The story is currently available at . I don’t know how long it is going to be up.Shelf Life Magazine

Short Story Monday is hosted by John at The Book Mine Set.


  1. Oooh, this one sounds right up my alley. I love metafiction. I've bookmarked it to read later.

    Without having read it myself yet, and basing it on your comments, could Li Ming's Americanization come from Jones' hands rather than herself? Could it be Jones' way of saying that we really have no way of knowing what someone else really goes through?

  2. I think Jones might also be trying to explore and/or discover the reasons behind what Li Ming goes through.

  3. I just read the story. It is very interesting how Jones commentary is part of the story.

  4. Hello Loni, John, and Teddy:

    Thank you reading "The Americanization of Li Ming." I appreciate you taking time to do so and for posting your comments. Since the blurb did not specify what journals my fiction and nonfiction has appeared in, below are links to some of my work.

    “Only War Games.” Short story. The Straitjackets: Spring 2010,
    This story is actually an excerpt from my novel Every Bitter Thing.

    “The Day I Helped Mama Can.” Short story. 55 Word Stories Literary Journal: August, 2008.

    "Learning More than Spanish." Personal essay. Paradigm: Issue 13,February 13, 2010,

    "Three Near Destiny Experiences." Personal essay. Litterbox Magazine: Issue 6, January 1,2010,

    My novel Every Bitter Thing will be out in September.

    Thanks again for taking time to read my work and sharing your comments.

    All the best,
    Hardy Jones