This August, my Wind&Bones collaborator, Hannah Stevens and I will be relocating to Taiwan. Our plane tickets are now all booked, and we’ll be heading off on the 9th August. We’ll be leaving our little Dundee apartment (and a large number of house-plants) in the care of a musician friend we know from Bulgaria, and heading to Tainan.
We were last in Taiwan about four years ago to give a lecture at Hualien University, and to catch up with some old friends. Ever since then, we’ve been planning to head back longer-term. But then came Covid-19, and after that we moved to Scotland… and things pretty much ran away with us. Earlier this year, however, we thought the time was right, so we put in applications for Taiwan Employment Gold Cards, and our applications were successful. The Employment Gold Cards will allow us to freelance in Taiwan, and to run all kinds of fun projects relating to writing and philosophy.
We’ll be based in Tainan, because it’s less rainy than Taipei, the cost of living is a little lower, and we loved the city’s feel. I’m very much looking forward to being in an environment where I can work further on my Chinese. And, as we’ll be in Tainan — where Taiwanese is spoken so widely — I’ve been working on this as well (you can see how I’m progressing here). I’ve also got another book in the works. The proposal is currently with my brilliant agent, and it’s very early stages. But Taiwan… well, without giving too much away, Taiwan will be the ideal place to work on the research for this.
Between now and our departure, there’s a lot to do. Meanwhile, I’m busy renewing old connections in Taiwan, making new connections, and working on those pesky Taiwanese tone changes.
Image: Taiwan railways brochure from the 1930s. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.