My Writing

I've had the opportunity to be mentored by many incredible people, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Prof. Adam Johnson, Prof. Jonah Willihnganz, Rose Whitmore, Jenn Trahan, Molly Antopol, Richie Hofmann, Melissa Dyrdahl, and more. The works you see below are tentative drafts that I'm continuing to work on!


All the Stars in the Air (2023)

A work about my childhood playing with fireworks and doing competitive sports. Ultimately, it is an exploration of the immigrant identity. My parents came from China and I was raised in a small village where most of my friends were white. In slipping into a new culture, where do you integrate, and where do you rebel? This current version is the 3rd place winner in the Stanford undergraduate creative writing competition. The writing is still a working draft.

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Dolphin Trainer

Matchmakers of Dolphin Grotto (2022)

My first fiction piece follows the life of a head dolphin trainer as he pushes between a confusing past and a controversial future. It plays with the idea of captivity. Sure, the dolphins are in captivity. But what about the head trainer? What walls are placed in front of him? How does he test their boundaries? Inspired by a real story and some anecdotes from real whale trainers. The writing is still a working draft.

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Poetry Chapbook

See it Here, Save it Where? (2021)

A chapbook of 5 (fictitious) poems. It begins with a critical essay on my writing style, written by a poet classmate. In my work, I write about innocence, a tumultuous family, and dying animals.

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Wave Rider (2022)

In this short writing, I focus on a fond memory of surfing in Socal when I was very young and how these memories are delicate apparitions we keep deep inside.

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Chowder (2021)

In this (very unpolished) writing, I look at my dances with solitude.

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Country road

But it Does to Me (2021)

In this (very unpolished) writing, I look at the permanence of my childhood village, farm, and wilderness.

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Orca trainer

Orca Boy (Work in progress, 2023)

In this audio production with the Stanford Storytelling Project, I talk about my friendship with a killer whale trainer from my hometown. Through our near-parallel stories of self-discovery, we look at what it means to pine for an unreachable past. This work will be one story in a larger audio show that I'm leading, titled "Reconnections."


Joe's Shanghai (2022)

In this short writing, I look at my Chinese culture through a comfort food restaurant that burned down in 2020.

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Moby Dick

Can Animals Seek Revenge? (2022)

In this academic essay, I look at the death of Dawn Brancheau at SeaWorld and the injury of Ahab in Moby Dick as a way of understanding competing theories of animal morality through a philosophical and literary lens. Given very high marks in a Stanford literature class.

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Portrait of a Bosnian Neighbor (2021)

In this (very unpolished) writing, I talk about my relationship with my neighbor and our neighborhood.

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Roads and Rivers and Skies (2021)

In this fever dream of piece, I look at some chaotic details of my childhood: fish-killing, patio stools, and the sway of planes in the dying light. Honestly, it's not good writing but this is a glimpse into an interesting existence.

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