Today I got an email telling me that my personal essay, "When Words Make You Real," was accepted in the mixed-race anthology The Beiging of America, which is awesome. I'm happy, proud even, to be part of such a groundbreaking but also crucial anthology exploring what it means to be mixed race (in my case, hapa) in America.
I got the good news a few days ago that I've been accepted as one of the readers at the Mixed Remixed Festival 2016 for a panel on hapa writers entitled "Hapa Writers: Our Stories." As some of you might remember, I went last year and the festival blew my fucking mind away. Suddenly, mixed race identity was the rule. It felt amazing to be part of a community (even a temporary one) made of multiracial artists, intellectuals, poets, writers, activists, and filmmakers, all of them with different stories, different narrative modalities, different experiences and cultural vocabularies. It was so fucking dope going last year and it'll be even more dope participating in it this year. I'm incredibly proud and excited to be part of this project
I went to my first Mixed Remixed festival today at the Japanese American National Museum, and I have to say, it was an amazing experience. For the first time in years, my phenotype, my story as a hapa writer, my experience being biracial and multicultural (in my case, Japanese, French, and American)--was the rule of the universe. Being biracial and multicultural was normal, even common. It was fucking amazing.
Though simply the experience of being there and connecting with other mixed, biracial, hapa, and multicultural writers was enough for me, I really enjoyed the multimodal panel ofJamie Ford, Mat Johnson, Bryan Medina, Marie Mockett, Michelle Brittan, and James Tyner. Hopefully, I'll find a way to get on this panel next year for the next incarnation of the Mixed Remixed festival. That would be both fun and also an honor.
Thanks so much for your kind words about my work. It means a lot to me that someone like you is taking an interest in and writing about WTBMM. Your dissertation sounds like an interesting and exciting project (I have a friend who's also doing a dissertation combining scholarly and creative writing although her committee only allowed a chapter for the creative writing) . . .
Good luck with your work, and yes, if your novel is published, do hit me up for a blurb.
Good luck with your work.