Charles Yu, Shawna Yang Ryan, Alvina Ling select 2024 Creative Writing Prize Winners

We are pleased to announce the 2024 cohort of honorable mentions, finalists, and grand prize winners of the Betty L. Yu & Jin C. Yu Creative Writing Prizes, established in partnership with in honor of Yu’s parents, who are longstanding Taiwanese American community leaders. In its third year, the prize expanded to include adult writers of all life stages. Their work will be published on throughout the year. Now in its fourth year, the prize saw the biggest pool of applicants yet, with double the number of entries from previous years. At the conclusion of the judging period, Yu noted that the quality and quantity of entries this year was “encouraging and inspiring.”

The Prizes are named in honor of Betty Lin Yu and Jin-Chyuan Yu for their service to the Taiwanese-American community, including establishment of TACL LID Youth Camp in Southern California, co-founding of the South Bay Taiwanese-American School, the first school in the United States specifically for the purpose of Taiwanese Language instruction, establishment of North America Taiwanese Engineering Association, Southern California Chapter (NATEA-SC) and longtime support for other organizations including Formosa Association for Public Affair (FAPA), North America Taiwanese Women Association (NATWA), and Taiwan American Association (TAA).

Read more about the inaugural 2021 announcement here:

After a blind deliberation period, the judges have selected the following:


Grand Prize Winner

Ho-Chun Herbert Chang | “Luck Girl; Benign City” (Fiction)

From the judges: “Subtle, restrained, elegant. A moving, poignant reflection of youth, friendship and first love.”

Herbert Chang is an assistant professor at Dartmouth College who studies social networks, politics, and how technology shapes human behavior. His research covered the 2020 and 2024 Taiwanese and United States Presidential Elections, the George Floyd protests, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. His work has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Scientific American, and Forbes 30 Under 30. His group combines computational, investigative, and journalistic approaches to tell compelling human stories. He writes about Taiwan and designs music systems.


Wiley Wei-Chiun Ho
brenda Lin

Honorable Mentions

Juliana Chang
Susan L. Lin
Charles Chin
Hairol Ma
Lenna L. Liu


Grand Prize Winner

Deborah Jang | Kinmen, 1969 (Fiction)

From the judges: “Vivid, colorful writing, elegant. Shows a great deal of promise.”

Deborah Jang grew up across five cities in three countries but considers Taipei, Taiwan her home. She is a college senior studying computer science and English and an incoming software engineer. Her oddest Taiwanese food cravings include rou geng (肉羹), almond tofu (杏仁豆腐), and that one Family Mart rice ball wrapped in egg and filled with hamburger patties, cheese, and BBQ sauce.


Devon Chang

Honorable Mentions

Kelly Chu
Ariya Nilkaew
Averylin Huang Cummins


Grand Prize Winner

Mackenzie Duan | West Coast Portraits (Poetry)

From the judges: “Lyrical, beautiful, powerful, sophisticated.”

Mackenzie Duan is a student from the Bay Area. Their work appears or is forthcoming in Black Warrior Review, Gulf Coast, Frontier Poetry, Electric Literature, and elsewhere.


Davina Jou
Naomi Gage

Honorable Mentions

Sophie Hsu
Colette T. Chang
Jamie Li
Emma Luu
Evelyn Wu


Grand Prize Winner

Triona Tsai | Shadows and Secrets (Fiction)

From the judges: “Imaginative, beautifully written with gorgeous descriptions. Innovating intriguing.”

Triona Tsai is a current 8th grader living in Pennsylvania. She lives with her parents and sister (and their two foster cats) and loves to read. She plays the piano and violin, codes, and is part of her school’s writing seminar. She loves Taiwan and goes back every summer with her family, and she absolutely adores Taiwanese cuisine.


Alice Kuok

Honorable Mentions

Kyle Wan
Norah Lee
Cara Wang
Josiah Wu

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