My Writing Journey: The Need for Approval and Praise [Part 3]

My name is Stephanie Chen and I am a 2nd generation Taiwanese American. Like many of my peers, I followed a prescribed path towards success: studied hard, got good grades, went to an Ivy League college. I studied finance and after graduation, started a job at a top-tier investment bank. I then joined an investment fund, where I eventually became a partner. However, if you had asked me when I was in the 6th grade what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said "a writer”. In early 2017,…

My Writing Journey: Is It Good Enough? Dealing with Self-Doubt [Part 2]

My name is Stephanie Chen and I am a 2nd generation Taiwanese American. Like many of my peers, I followed a prescribed path towards success: studied hard, got good grades, went to an Ivy League college. I studied finance and after graduation, started a job at a top-tier investment bank. I then joined an investment fund, where I eventually became a partner. However, if you had asked me when I was in the 6th grade what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said "a writer”. In early 2017,…

My Writing Journey: How it Began [Part 1]

My name is Stephanie Chen and I am a 2nd generation Taiwanese American. Like many of my peers, I followed a prescribed path towards success: studied hard, got good grades, went to an Ivy League college. I studied finance and after graduation, started a job at a top-tier investment bank. I then joined an investment fund, where I eventually became a partner. However, if you had asked me when I was in the 6th grade what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said "a writer”. In early 2017,…

A Rose By Any Other

My Chinese name is 陳克聞. Seven strokes for the first character of my given name, fourteen for the second, because the fortuneteller told my grandmother that this mathematics of words was auspicious. I write my name with one stroke fewer than the prescribed number, so perhaps all my misfortunes are a result of bad penmanship. No one uses 陳克聞. At home, I am 哥哥, “older brother,” except when my mother, in exasperation, calls out all three syllables of my name for dramatic effect.…

Beyond the Amy Tan Questions: Why a Millennial TA Anthology

I call them the “Amy Tan Questions.” Questions like “how do families relate in context of war, distance, and famine?” or “how does a child reconcile the old world of their parents with the new world America in which they live?”. These questions are important, for they are our foundation as a community and give us vignettes of Asian and Asian American history that American public schools neglected. But they are dated, and they are not our stories.I wanted to see writing that moved…