I knew very little about Ha Jin before the reading. I hadn't known, for instance, that he wrote in English and not Chinese. When asked about he would write his fiction in Chinese, he said that he had to discipline himself not to do so. He had committed to refining his English writing craft and could not afford to diverge from that path.
His comment made me consider the choices I have made professionally and the need to stick to my choices without jumping around too much.