Carma Chan

Publisher info

Carma was mentored in the ancient art of storytelling by UCLA's quotable screenwriting professor, Richard Walter, and has completed several original screenplays. Her Saardu screenplay won multiple awards. She loves movies and television and offers recommendations at IMDb.

Her name at birth was Carma Yvonne Dillon. She was raised with unconditional love by Ruth Gagne of Utah and John Chan of Hong Kong and writes with the name Carma Chan to honor the memory of her beloved stepdad. She uses her grandfather's name (Gagne, Carma Y.) when writing about her Gagne ancestry. She uses C.Y. Dillon when writing dark, edgy stories, as she attributes her darkness to being abandoned by her Dillon father.

Her 9th great-grandfather was Nathaniel Morton, who wrote the first history of the pilgrims in Plymouth, and Ralph Waldo Emerson was the husband of her 9th great aunt Lydia Morton. She is a descendant of the Dillingham family who founded Sandwich, Massachusetts. Her grandfather changed his name from Peter H. Dillingham to Herman P. Dillon when he moved west. Her Gagne ancestors settled in Vermont/New Hampshire/Maine after many generations in Quebec, Montreal, Canada.

Hobbies include creative writing, gardening, genealogy, and photography. She loves visiting Redwoods, Olympic, Yellowstone, Yosemite and other state and national parks. Her first overseas travel was to Maui, London, and Ireland (Cork County) in 2019.

In her early twenties she was the lead vocal in a rock band in Salt Lake City. To celebrate her 25th birthday, Carma went skydiving and describes the free fall as thrilling. She did not like the landing, but no bones broke. She has also enjoyed snow skiing in California, Utah, and Whistler, Canada.

Carma lives with husband Oliver in Long Beach, California. They have 3 cats. She is Mom to two kids and Gramma Carmels to three grandkids.

Smashwords Interview

What are you currently working on?
Since I fell and fractured a vertebra in January in the year of the pig and pandemic, writing can only be done in small doses. I simply cannot sit for hours as I did in years past on lengthy literary projects like screenplays, novels, and art collections. I am sad about that. It's unknown when (if) sitting for more than 30 minutes won't hurt. It's hard enough to do my job 40 hours a week - a sit-to-stand desk and ergonomic chair have helped tremendously. I still have to take breaks, stretch gently, walk deliberately, and be careful of so many movements I took for granted! I hate to sound like a cranky old lady, this is my way of saying I probably won't ever be able to spend hours and hours writing creatively, and it makes me feel a little sad. I miss getting lost like that. Nonetheless, an occasional poem, a short sentimental note to a friend, a quick blog to share how I'm getting by in these tough times, is a joy for me. Today I started a new catagory of blogging, "Orenda Says Hello". Check out my blog on my profile page or go to
When did you first start writing?
At age 12. It began with a love of poetry, especially freestyle poems like those written by Cummings. When I was 14 and in typing class, instead of typing what was in the textbook, I wrote a short story about sexual curiosity. My teacher found out I was typing something creative and told my English teacher, and she begged me to let her read it. I was pretty introverted--I had written 103 poems in 2 years, and had only let one person read my innermost thoughts. Eventually I gave in, because she seemed safe, and she became the second teacher who told me I should never stop writing. For many years it felt like a curse. Since meeting Professor Richard Walter at UCLA, I've grown to love this gift and feel honored to be part of the ancient art of storytelling!
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Carma Chan online


Cerebus Film: An Epic Journey
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,590. Language: English. Published: May 12, 2011. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Entertainment industry, Fiction » Graphic novels & comics » Comics
George Lucas, Dreamworks, and Paramount Pictures contacted the creator of this legendary graphic novel series, Dave Sim, to inquire about purchasing the movie rights, but Sim would not sell the creative rights to his work. Instead, he gave his blessing to a fresh, loyal, unknown face to write, produce, and direct the first movie. This personal Mount Everest story will inspire you.
10 Most Annoying Things People Say to NICU Parents
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,910. Language: English. Published: November 23, 2010. Categories: Nonfiction » Parenting » Family tragedy, Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Family health
(4.00 from 1 review)
On May 4th, 1992, Carma finally got to take her baby home after 73 days on an emotional roller coaster in a place that felt like science fiction. Surrounded by a sea of babies, most of them weighing under 2 pounds (1 kilogram), kept alive through surgeries, daily being needled, tubed, taped and treated in ways no parent wants their baby to experience.
Cerebus ~ Under the Aardvarkian Spell
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,000. Language: English. Published: November 15, 2010. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Entertainment industry, Nonfiction » Entertainment » Celebrity culture
The victorious muse that spawned an entire industry of self-published comic books now blazes a trail for independent comic book movies.

Carma Chan's favorite authors on Smashwords

Smashwords book reviews by Carma Chan

  • Captain Zap meets the disenchanted robot. on Nov. 13, 2011

    Existentialism and minimalistic genius. I love the contrast of profound angst conveyed with meager illustration. This is a gutsy move by an artist who grew up in the punk/grunge/metal era. I see why so many famous comic book artists have applauded this indie comic.