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We are now well into the New Year of 2017 and heading directly towards another, the Year of the Rooster or often translated/known as the year of the Red Chicken or Red Fire Chicken. The 10th sign, the Rooster, is connected to metal and the shine of gold suggesting that riches may be born from patience - however, the sign also suggests predictability and a period of being constant, which, after the tumultuous year of 2016, may perhaps be welcomed by many.

Famous persona known to have been born in a past Year of the Rooster are Emperor Wu of China’s Western Han Dynasty (202 BC - 9 AD), Rudyard Kipling, Jennifer Aniston, Amelia Earhart and Groucho Marx - to name but a few but all Roosters are said to be "deep thinkers, capable, and talented. 

A decision had been made last year, due to a lack of external response/interest shown, to stop producing PDF copies of Bill's work but instead to concentrate fully on the print-on-demand publications and on a Kindle edition. This simplifies things for us at the sharp end; less website matters to occupy our time with Amazon doing all the hard work of printing, sending, costs, etc.

With that in mind: 2016 was a spectacular year for Bill's work (not sure that any Zodiac sign, Western or Asian, predicted this) and particularly during the months of November and December we achieved great output on the publication front. We now have seven publications up and running on Amazon worldwide as follows:

No.4 - Chinese Short Stories - Spanning 2000 Years - Kindle and Print

No.7 - Ma Chih-yüan's Complete San-ch’ü-aria Poems - Kindle and Print

No.18 - Chinese Folk Tales - Kindle and Print

No.27 - Chinese Myths - Kindle and Print

No.28 - Chinese Allusions - A Dictionary - Print Only

No.29 - Lasting-life Palace-hall (Hong Sheng) (parts 1 and 2) - Print Only

No.32 - Chinese Idioms, Proverbs and Sayings - Over 2000 Explanations - Kindle and Print

However, despite our deepest efforts and results the sales of these works do not justify the near-full time effort that has gone into the end-result. My wife and I are therefore not sure how we can continue - the work being an immense project that has not garnered any real or meaningful external interest.

Ideally we need a benefactor, an Institution, a culturally biased publisher or private literary group to take interest in my father's work but without such we do not have the funds (and therefore time) to continue at our our previous pace or indeed at all. It is therefore extremely doubtful that the Year of the Rooster will produce much. We will however continue to maintain the website and our current publications as they are: and hope that something pops our of the woodwork soon.

All the best for 2017 and for the Year of the Rooster ahead.

Ieuan Dolby and Wu Chin Ling

Whilst trawling through what amounts to over 95,000 files (admittedly some appear to be duplicates) I came across one titled 'adapthistheatre'. Now it took me some time to realise that this was indeed an edited and refurbished edition of Bill's well known 'A History of Chinese Drama.

Upon reading this file further and looking at when it was created, and indeed Bill's own notes on the matter, it transpires that this file is an edited and invigorated version dated 1997, twenty years after the original publication.

I seriously wonder if there is any demand for a reprint of this newer version? Any publisher out there who would like to republish it (?), noting that the original work of 1976 is still an enourmous authority on the subject.

I am pleased to say, after burnīng the midnight oil, that we have managed to publish our first print publication. This is of course 'Lasting-life Palace-hall' by Hung Sheng (1654-1704) as translated, introduced and explained by William Dolby.

This wonderful play, also known as 'Palace of Eternal Life (Youth)' or 'Abiding-life Palace-hall' was written by Hung Sheng, commonly known as Hong Sheng. This particular translation is possibly Bill's largest work (No29 of his 'Chinese Culture Series') and so we have spilt the print version into two paperback volumes. The first volume contains Bill's original Introduction and Translation, and the second volume contains his numerous appendices and explanations.

The book has been published as 'print on demand' and is available to purchase through Amazon. Some common locations follow:

Volume One, Lasting-life Palace-hall, The Translated Play - at Amazon UK or USA

Volume Two, Lasting-life Palace-hall, Appendices and Endnotes - at Amazon UK or USA

We will also maintain a small stock for those who cannot access Amazon - so please do feel free to contact us to order a copy direct.

We hope you enjoy this amazing play.

The digital version is also available here as one single publicatíon.