Who am I, where am I, what day is it?


Saturday, Aug. 20 (yesterday) was my birthday. The kids gave me a coffee cup that said: HOW THE &$#! DID I TURN 50? I have always sworn, Tijuana po' boy that I am, that I would have a home of my own before I turned fifty. Well, we got the furniture into our new house on Thursday. I made it just under the wire. We're here in our big house unpacking boxes and wandering in our yard. I didn't think we'd be settling in Illinois--I thought I was heading for Colorado. But life has its many amazing turnarounds, and this is one of them.

I have been deeply touched by all the many people who have written to me about Teresita and THE HUMMINGBIRD'S DAUGHTER. It is a good birthday gift, by the way, to have it pop up this week on the Denver vest seller list for the third time. I have gotten fan mail before, and presents, and even weird mailings, but I have never had people thank me for writing a book. Cinderella and I have sent out a few hundred Teresita post cards to date, and I have been trying to answer everybody who writes. But it is deeply touching to hear from you all, and I thank you.

THE DEVIL'S HIGHWAY is set to appear in paperback in September. As far as I know, I'm going on tour again. I'm starting to feel like Molly Hatchet, on tour all year 'round! I just finished the HUMMINGBIRD tour. It was wonderful, and lively. I was amazed at the number of people who came out to visit. I guess I'll get to see many of you again. Also, if you check the schedule on the opening page of the site, you can see where I'm going when not on tour. Here's the thing--when I'm not on tour, I seem to be traveling. I know I'm going to Santa Fe next week, and to Salt Lake City and Austin and Boston and D.C. after that. Those of you who knew me in San Diego know that I thought I would never go anywhere.

Other news: DEVIL'S H, the movie, is set to start filming in October. Or so I see in Variety. It stars my boy, the handsomest man in Hollywood, Nicholas Gonzalez. Movie folks are also still poking around HUMMINGBIRD--I hope to have some news for you soon. But I must keep that under wraps for now. One great bit of news about HUMMINGBIRD is that my cousin, the venerable Mexican ambassador and former consul, Enrique Hubbard Urrea, is doing the Mexican-Spanish translation of the book. I urged him to do it sinde the book is written (in my mind, anyway) in his Sinaloan argot. So he'll whack at it, then send it to me, and I'll noodle with it. There are also editions coming from France, Germany, Israel, and Turkey. I believe Spain is also looking into an edition...which will be in vastly different Spanish than the manic Sinaloan Spanish.

Okay, so I'm a suburban dad now. Some asshole is out back cutting down my forsythia bushes with a lil' electric suburban chainsaw. What the hell! Don't he know you don't do shit like that to a Logan Heights homey? Orale, vato--que onda con mis pinches forsythias? Oh well, I'm fifty now. I'm too old to worry about the neighbors. I have a giant screen Sony tv, damn it. I just watch Steve McQueen movies all day. I don't even write. Just do the car chase from BULLITT over and over, making believe my easy chair is a bad Mustang.

Keep writing.
Love, Luis


jupitergirl00@y... (not verified)

i just finished The Hummingbird's Daughter and i can't stop saying, "i can't believe this guy was my teacher!" i LOVED it! you are awesome. hope you are well.

~donna (of blo pop fame)

mimi_mike@yahoo.com (not verified)

Luis, I am from the EAST coast and am a migrant tutor/teacher all year round. I've fallen in love a hundred times with these kids that I teach (age 3 to 21). I read your recent editorial, "Who Will Tell The Story of our Newest Immigrants?" that appeared in our local paper, THE ATLANTIC CITY PRESS, and I felt that I had to communicate with you. We are trying to document - through photography and prose - the lives of these young pilgrims or refugees, as you so accurately call them.. I have written and illustrated a children's book called, "MOVING AGAIN - the true story of a migrant child in America." It is unpublished - or shall I say, "Self-published". I wrote it to explain to the students that I teach in my full-time job what it is like to be a migrant child. I have an associate who recently made a set of note cards with all profit going to Harvest of Hope. All pictures on the cards are of our "kids" that visit NJ every summer during blueberry season and become apart of our 6 weeks school experience. It is a federal program - a model program that was documented by the AP this year. THe article about our "model' school appear on www.CNN.com in mid to late July under EDUCATION - migrant. I would gladly send you a sample of my children's book and a sample of the note cards.
I was inspired by author/illustrator Carmen Lomas-GArza to write my story for children - to help them understand their new schoolmates. Many of our Mexican students return each year and MANY stay - legally and otherwise. We don't ask too many questions. We just try to give them a chance to reach their potential in this great land of ours. I also wrote a song called. "Around tha Flagpole' - that my choir sings about the many diverse cultures in the freedom land called America. I am much older that you - born in 1944. I am a grandmother of 7 chldren. I feel that the plight of the MExican people is a mission for me. I am trying to "get out the word" to the best of my ability. Thank you for all that you are doing. MAry K. Guerrieri (mimi_mike@yahoo.com). Don't let the name fool you, I'm Irish and German, but I have 5 Italian children thanks to my husband of 38 years. My last child is getting married in a year and I am currently working 3 jobs and writing/drawing in my free time. But now I have to treat myself to a new book. I'm looking forward to reading Hummingbird's Daughter.
Sincerely, mary Guerrieri

david winner (not verified)

I just found your website, so let me be the latest to wish you a happy birthday. Some weeks ago I saw a NY Times Sunday review of The Hummingbird's Daughter and, for whatever reason, that led me to read The Devil's Highway which I've been recommending to everyone I know who believes in books. I've told several people that it reads like a movie so I was pleased to see here that the movie is in the works. I've also now read 3 other non-fiction books by you, and I just finished The Hummingbird's Daughter, and I thought that was wonderful. I hope your next tour will bring you to New York City.

Add new comment

Book club members have been some of my most enthusiastic and careful readers. I’m thrilled to share my work with you, answer your questions and tell you some of the stories behind the stories. This is our spot, just for us. Here, we can chat:  If I’m nearby, I’ll come and visit your club. Otherwise, we can Skype, talk over the phone or email. Sometimes, I’ll send surprises or hold contests.

Tell us all about your book club!
Type the characters you see in this picture. (verify using audio)
Type the characters you see in the picture above; if you can't read them, submit the form and a new image will be generated. Not case sensitive.