Author of Turning Japanese, Where The Body Meets Memory,
The Colors of Desire, After We Lost Our Way,
and Angels for the Burning


David MuraDavid Mura is a writer, memoirist, poet and performance artist who brings a unique perspective to our multi-racial and multi-cultural society. A third-generation Japanese-American, he has written intimately about his life as a man of color and the connections between race, sexuality and history. In public appearances interweaving poetry, performance and personal testament, he provides powerful insights into the racial issues facing America today.

Mura's memoirs, poems essays, plays and performances have won wide critical praise and numerous awards. Their topics range from contemporary Japan to the legacy of the internment camps and the history of Japanese Americans to critical explorations of an increasingly diverse America. He gives presentations at educational institutions, businesses and other organizations throughout the country.


A Stranger's Journey by David Mura In A Stranger’s Journey: Race, Identity & Narrative Craft in Writing, published by University of Georgia Press, David Mura has written a book on creative writing that addresses our increasingly diverse American literature. Mura argues for a more inclusive and expansive definition of craft, particularly in relationship to race, even as he elucidates timeless rules of narrative construction in fiction and memoir. His essays offer technique-focused readings of writers such as James Baldwin, ZZ Packer, Maxine Hong Kingston, Mary Karr, and Garrett Hongo, while making compelling connections to Mura’s own life and work as a Japanese American writer. This is a book for writers who want to engage with the issues with race and identity and writers who want to learn essential narrative techniques used in fiction and memoir.

Upon finishing this book, I think that we will no longer be strangers. We will no longer feel that we are on our journey alone. This book is the intersection where our paths meet, where we can forge bonds that transcend the racial divide. Maybe from here on out, we can accompany each other on our journeys as friends and fellow artists, but most importantly, as fellow humans. (Reyna Grande author of The Distance Between Us)

“A Stranger’s Journey is an essential work of literary criticism and memoir, challenging readers and writers alike to think about writing, race, and identity in new ways." (Rebecca Hussey Foreword Reviews)

Events for David Mura & A Stranger’s Journey: Race, Identity & Narrative Craft in Writing


Turning Japanese
Turning Japanese: Memoirs of a Sansei

(Memoir, Atlantic Monthly Press, 1991;
trans. in Japan, Hakurosya; Netherlands; paperback reissued, with a new afterword by Grove Press 2006).
Where the Body Meets Memory Where the Body Meets Memory:
An Odyssey of Race,
Sexuality & Identity

(Memoir, Anchor/Random, 1996).
Famouse Suicides of the Japanese Empire Famous Suicides of the Japanese Empire
(Coffee House Press, 2008)
The Last Incantations: Poems
(Poetry, Triquarterly, 2014)
After We Lost Our Way
(Poetry, E.P. Dutton, 1989; reprint, Carnegie
Mellon University Press, 1997).
the colors of desire The Colors of Desire
(Poetry, 1995, Anchor/Doubleday)
Angels for  the Burning Angels for the Burning
(Poetry, 2004, Boa Editions Ltd.)
Cover art by Long Nguyen.
Song for Uncle Tom, Tonto & Mr. Moto: Poetry & Identity (University of Michigan Press, Poets on Poetry series, 2002)

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