Is the book is ready?

The holidays break was a great opportunity to polish my manuscript and add some of my recent learnings in #muaythai and #bjj into the story. Feeling pretty good about how they mix with the main character’s #taichi and #daoism background and the frighteningly real advancements in #artificialintelligence and #neuroscience

After the encouraging notes from the editor and a lot of trimming to keep the pace fast, maybe it will be time to talk to agents and publishers soon.

#fantasybooks #fantasywriters #fantasywriting #martialarts

The best style of fighting

Given the warrior origins of all martial arts, it’s natural that discussions often lan on what’s more effective than what. Most of the times debating effectiveness on the streets or in big competitions like ufc as the ultimate ring. Natural, but likely shortsighted, if you look at this field as an ecosystem.

In combat sports it’s crucial that athletes focus on a few high percentage techniques they can master while at their peek.

But since athletes are different, they need coaches that will know all the high percentage techniques to recommend them the few that work for them.

Since percentages eventually mutate once an innovator changes the game and turns an obscure low percentage into high, these coaches also need masters with a complete knowledge of the art, regardless of percentage in competitions, even if that takes a lifetime to achieve.

And those masters sometimes need a different perspective, a source they can go to to find other ideas for challenges they face, ideas that will trickle down the entire system, and often those ideas will come from other styles that were previously considered ineffective until one genius of that art showed how it can be done (as an example, take mma and how Machida made karate dangerous again, or Ronda made Judo badass once more… those two arts, at that time, were considered dead that by many “specialists”)

My point is martial arts is an ecosystem that relies on the deep passion of each individual like a natural biosphere requires each species to survive so everything can thrive.

Passion should be celebrated, not debated. For whatever tickles their fancy – competition, coaching, encyclopedic knowledge, cultural preservation… Athletes, coaches, masters of fashionable arts and the preservers of lost arts are all fundamental to this crazy thing we do and love so much. Therefore, the entire discussion of what’s the best style denotes either one’s small perspective on combat arts, a comercial bias, or just the fact that you haven’t grown enough into it to develop perspective.

Unfortunately, after 30 years in martial arts, I can tell that true perspective requires distance and experience– it’s not something you can build fast like a competitive edge, or easy, like watching people fighting from the comfort of sofa.

#martialarts #mma #bjj #karate #tkd #judo #boxing #muaythai #sambo #wrestling #taichi #kempo #wingchun #tkd #kungfu

Sports Data?

Who uses data and devices to improve their training? I’ve been using the #whoopstrap to monitor my performance. It’s interesting to see that the best indicator of a good day for me is how rested I am. Duh… but that isn’t totally related to the simple number of hours of sleep. It’s a combo. The hours, but also the quality of that sleep. How regular it has been, how much it compensates for the strain the previous day, but more than anything to what I had for dinner the night before (and what time). A late or a heavy dinner always correlates to a poor sleep and as a consequence a shitty performance the following day.

Case in point: 6h27 usually isn’t enough sleep for an 84% recovery. But because I had a light dinner last night, I had a highly efficient sleep. In the morning, my mind was clear, my body was rested and ready. I took one hour of yoga then 90min of Bjj. At 46 years old, I was the last to leave the mat. More than that, I managed to make a lot of things work. Things I tried before but was too confused to bring them to life in the middle of a roll.

Then I looked back at my own posts and compared the days I reported great performance and using things I had just learned with the days with efficient sleep. They are a perfect match.

All this may seem like common sense to you, but when you leave it to the “feeling” it’s easy to give it a blind eye. The data, on the other hand, is way more unforgiving. Almost as much as the partners that are going to try to choke me and rip my arms off if I am not on a good day.

#bjj #oss #whoop #sportsdata #martialarts

What style of fighting do you practice?

#taichi is a new thing for me. I’ve trained different styles of #kungfu including #wingchun plus #karate #boxing #BJJ and a bunch of other things, in my attempt to build my own version of #mma with a traditional martial arts spin. But then tried #taichi from #Wudang to understand how the character from my book feels when she’s training or fighting and love it — will probably keep training way beyond the book. How about you, what do you do?

The joy of teaching women to fight

Teaching, especially women, is my favorite experience in #martialarts . Not only because how rewarding it is to help girls know how to defend themselves, but also because it’s great to be around when they have what I call The Big AHA — when they realize that getting hit once or twice isn’t the end of the world. The simple realization they can withstand pain and fight back changes their confidence forever. And because the insight comes from being hit, not hitting, the style almost doesn’t matter, as long as they are being exposed to some pressure and forced to react to it. I think that is why I decided to pick a female protagonist for my next novel about #kungfu vs #ArtificialIntelligence. And that’s why I decided she would only train #femalefighters

Stay tuned, especially if you are into #taichi #mma #wingchun #wingchun #bjj #brucelee or #ai

The end, restart

Writing is weird. You start, sometimes finish. Then finish again, and again and again… until you can’t do it anymore. Then you abandon it, hoping the world won’t crucify you for your lack of stamina. Last night I finished this same story for the 5th time. There’s at least one more to go by myself, just to polish the writing and grammar a little bit. Then I’ll go find agent and publisher, probably one or two more to go. Usually I truly end on the 6th or 7th… but this one is being written in a language that isn’t mine. The adventure may last a bit longer. Let’s see. What’s the Daoist god of stamina again?

The Wisdom of the Dao

In my research for the next novel, I had the pleasure to meet Deng Ming Dao, author of this wonderful little book of stories used in the Daoist culture to explain, memorize and carry important ideas and values through time. Dumb me forgot to take a picture of us together. Nevertheless, the conversation was, I may say, enlightening.

#daoism #china #dengmingdao


#Durga is a Hindu warrior #goddess, protective mother of the universe. She is one of the faith’s most popular deities, a protector of all that is good and harmonious in the world. A special appearance of #Hinduism in a book inspired by #daoism – coming soon.

The Magic of Wudang

The mountains of Wudang, in China, are no doubt one of the most magical places I’ve been in my life. After a few days there, I came back full of inspiration for more vivid descriptions of the places where Yinyin was born and raised. Unfortunately, photos never captured that magic well, and video leaves some of it out too. These cinemagraphs, in their subtle looped motion, although manipulated by a computer program, may do the landscape more justice. Hopefully the novel will allow you to go the furthest. 😉

My name is Tigress


Girls should be at home this late. Especially little Asian chicks like me. Never running, alone, in the dark streets of Oakland. Except that when dudes see you so comfortable and confident by yourself, they think you are either crazy or are hiding something.I am both. Crazy and hiding.

From a fence ahead, I hear a scream. The mouth of an unsecured construction site. I go check. Behind a huge stack of lumber, a hooded figure holds a scantily clad woman by the wrist. She tries to shake him off, but he doesn’t seem into her plan.

The thing with Oakland is: it’s predictable. Shit always happen in the same places. There’s where the junkies get fucked up. Where cops get gifts. Where blacks get shot. Where dumb fights break. Where girls get roughed. If you want to avoid trouble, you stay away. Otherwise…

“Hey, Sir? This aint how you treat a lady,” I yell from outside.

“Fuck off!” He responds and laughs his drunken laughter. To my ears that’s an invite.
I pass the fence. He pauses. More intrigued than wary. With the sleeve of his jacket, a stained, too short jean one, he wipes the messy bush growing around his mouth and opens a wide grin. Yes, it was an invite.

Then I see a flash. Bright, blinding. When the light fades, I am somewhere else.

It’s been happening since the event on the lab. The flashes. Memories so vivid, everything seems like the present. A hiccup of conscience of sorts. They never come at a good time though. Now it’s dark. Night. A tunnel… The subway locals call Bart. Such a funny name. Perhaps the cabs should be Lisa and the buses Homer? The cable cars should be Margies! I am only 19, freshly arrived in America and life still feels like I’m inside a TV show. The train stops, I get in. The wagon is almost empty, just me and a man wearing a grass-stained khaki overall and a bright orange helmet full of partially ripped stickers. He looks at me weird, but I want no trouble, keep walking to the other end of the car. Sit as far away as possible.

The Bart moves and once out of the station and it’s dark, I hear steps lurking behind me. Remember to breathe, Yinyin.

Flash! Back to Oakland. Good. I march toward the asshole in the alley. “Leave her alone, sir!” The drunk cackles and lets go of her hand. “Huh, looks like the little Chink wants to join us, babe. Isn’t she cute?” He takes a pocket knife. Pathetic. I keep moving forward–same speed, same determination.

Another flash. The man in the subway. I look back, wondering what would possibly sound so similar to a zipper, just to see the eye of his dick staring right into mine. He grabs my hand. Bad move.

“Eat tofu,” I say, immediately knowing that didn’t come out right. In Mandarin, it would have worked much better. Whatever. “Fucking depraved,” I correct. Now he understands. I turn his wrist in one direction, twist his elbow the opposite way. So fast and far, I feel his tendon snap. He screams. I pull it the other way and stand, pushing my hip against his and up he goes. I sense his feet unroot, fly over my shoulder. Almost in slow motion. His helmet first and alone, ricocheting on the chromed bars and away from the skull it was supposed to protect. I think I hear the music. Shifu’s flute, playing calm long notes like the ones he used to pace my tai chi. Then BAM! The rest of him smashes the metal floor. Head first. He stays there. The lights from the windows blink on and off, he shows no sign of life. Shit! Did I kill the man?

The flash drags me back again.

The woman has giant legs and even bigger boobs. Both as exposed as she could without technically being naked. She looks at me and screams for the fence. “Somebody fucking help!” Thanks for the confidence. I gaze at the knife, crack my knuckles, then pounce. Watch that, bitch.

Real fights aren’t like those in the movies. They are messy and unforgiving. You have to deal with your dumb opponent, make sure you don’t kill the fucker, that he doesn’t kill you, and that you don’t step on a nail or trip on a ladder. I manage to avoid all that just to get hit by another flash.

The Bart stops. The creep still lays there like a rag doll and a memory of Shifu washes me in shame. He wasn’t a violent man himself. Would rather spend his time training people on the comprehension of the Dao and the healing aspects of Qigong. So, when he allowed me, and even pushed me to let my beast out, no one understood. “You will get it, someday, Tigress,” he told me. Daoists are fond of their paradoxes, like accepting of the wrong as a path to the right. “All the philosophy is packed into the moves. The yin hiding inside the yang. One day, you will see. But you must promise to avoid death. Daoists do not hit to kill.” A solemn oath I may have just broken. Above us, the dragons roared on Shifu’s behalf. Maybe he roared with them too. Then, as announcing an undeserved blessing, I feel a sting burn in my arm.

Back to the alley. In that moment of confusion, the blade nicks the side of my shoulder, right over the tattoo of my home town! Why did you have to do that?

Wudang, its mountains and fog, its mighty tigress and the swarm of bees Shifu cursed me with, are now all covered in blood. You’re so fucked, jackass. I grab his forearm and get my body against his, hit him with the back of my head. Not a pretty move, but it works. The blade is mine. One more kick on the chest and the fucker is on his butt, still trying to understand what happened to him. Yes, buddy. You’ve been owned by a woman.
I turn to the girl: “Go.”

But instead, she starts striking me with her tiny handbag. A dozen times. “Are you crazy?” A single little distraction is all it takes. The man comes back in our direction. I thrust her with my shoulder, right between her giant breasts and the blond flies three feet to safety. The guy now has his head and arms wrapped around my waist, the woman has her chest covered in blood. She shrieks. This time real loud, louder than Oakland. Police will come. “That’s my blood!” I point at my bleeding tattoo. “See?” She breathes relieved. Waves the handbag again: “Leave him alone!”


I let my stance sink so he can’t raise me off the ground, and over his back, I extend my hand. Stick my finger into his ass. Now he shrieks too, like a cartoon. Hooked in his rear end, I flip him on the air, he crashes hard on his back. He wheezes, searching for air, and I grab his scalp. By the hair, I force him onto his knees. He’s mine now. Him, the fight, the battleground. Everything. Sun Tzu would be proud. Peace at last. Suddenly, nowhere in the world is quieter than Oakland. I can hear the sounds of the tv from a neighbor somewhere. Enjoy the colors of the sign from the titties bar beyond the gate reflecting on a large trash bin. Blue, red, blue, red. From the wall, a cat quietly scans the place for rodents. From another, an owl stares too, probably looking for the same unlikely dinner. I think it’s funny. In China, owls are called cat-faced eagles. So it sounds like the beginning of a joke: a cat, a cat-faced bird and a girl nicknamed Tigress walk into a dark alley… The Dao can be funny sometimes.

The stink of booze, cigarettes, and lack of showering awake me from the wandering. The stench makes me want to throw up. Instead, I take a deep breath and stick the knife into his thigh. Right next to the crotch, full blade in.

He screams, and I scream back at him. Louder, crazier, inches from his nose. So deranged, his voice dries out and he stays there, bugged eyes and open mouth. I throw the bloodied knife away and say, “How about that, honey? You’re a hermaphrodite! Your own slit and all. Good, huh? Now go fuck yourself and get out of my sight.” He limps for his life, bouncing on walls, falling over himself, and disappears beyond the corner.

“Good job, Tigress,” I tell myself, then brush away some of the concrete powder and sawdust on my running clothes. A glimpse of a smile creeps in. Behind, the blonde continues to yell, “Stupid bitch! You are one person. He is every fucking man on the planet. Will you beat them all?”

Yes, I will, sister.

Hi. My name is Tigress. I am an immortal and I can help. But before you open the package I sent, you will have to listen to a story. My story.


This post is part of a book currently being written by author PJ Pereira.
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