interWellness: The women-led startup representing Taiwan at the Hult Prize global accelerator

Just last week, the Hult Prize—a global startup challenge that has been dubbed the “Nobel Prize for students” and awards US$1 million to the winning team—wrapped up its accelerator and penultimate round of business pitches in London. Among the competitors was Joyce Chen, a Bay Area native, recent graduate of the National Taiwan University, and second-generation Taiwanese American.  [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="1102"] interWellness co-founders with Minister of Health and Welfare,…

Huiru May Huang: On Encountering a Stranger  

My students were putting on Little Red Riding Hood today and I was the Big Bad Wolf, so I showed up to Sister Marianne’s door in my wolf costume. Sister Marianne is my ninety year-old neighbor. She works at the church next to my school, so we’d walk to work together every day, rain or shine. We wouldn’t say much to each other, but her petite presence always puts my mind at ease. Prolonged silences like these used to drive me out of my skin, but I’ve grown to understand the solitude that…

Now at the Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival: “Taiwan Equals Love”

FEATURE PHOTOS FROM THE HONOLULU RAINBOW FILM FESTIVAL PRESS KIT Taiwan Equals Love will be streaming free from now until August 14th on GagaOOLala, Asia’s largest on-demand platform for LGBTQ content. English subtitles are available.  It’s not June, but that doesn’t mean that we’re done celebrating Pride. This summer, the Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival is holding its 32nd annual film screening from July 30th to August 15th, celebrating and raising awareness for the LGBTQ community.…

Ashley Chuyun Cheng: A-ma, I Hope You Can Hear Me Over Zoom

I don’t usually remember my dreams, but the night before my grandmother passes, I have one that I remember with unparalleled clarity. In it, I’m pushing a shopping cart around at the Carrefour in Pingtung, Taiwan, arguably one of the great retail loves of my life. (For those unfamiliar with Carrefour, it’s essentially Costco but better, as hard as that is to believe. You can get all sorts of groceries and appliances and there’s a whole floor of restaurants and crane games, so it makes…

Stamp Thief, by Ying-Ann (Annie) Chen

FEATURE PHOTO ADAPTED FROM Dave Weatherall on Unsplash The fire ate loudly. It spit ashes everywhere as it gorged down our offerings. “The gods are hungry today,” my grandma warned. The fire burst in a sudden uproar, slapping its chopsticks down on the lady susan, demanding more. The offerings were for our ancestors, why were the gods taking what wasn’t for them? I tried to feed the flames a paper iPhone, but my grandma jerked my hand back.   “You are too greedy,” she chastised…

“Danny, Danny”: Meet San Francisco filmmaker Huan Cheng

FEATURE PHOTOS COURTESY OF HUAN CHENG, 2021 San Francisco-based filmmaker and multidisciplinary artist Huan Cheng explores the loneliness of the immigrant experience in her short film Danny, Danny. Cheng, born in Taiwan, draws upon her own experiences of arriving in the United States as a young adult in Danny, Danny, which screened at CAAMFest this year and The Method Fest in 2020, and is now available to audiences again. Cheng is a member of the Hollywood Professional Association 2021 Young Entertainment…

Convenience Store Encounters, by Katie Chen

HONORABLE MENTION, HIGH SCHOOL CATEGORY The alarm beeps. And where there is no response or movement from the lump of blankets on the bed, it beeps again, with increased urgency. And beeps again. And vibrates with increased frequency. And when it seems like the alarm is about to vibrate itself off the counter it’s sitting on, a hand emerges itself from its home on the bed and smashes the alarm clock hard. Twice. Finally, there is blissful silence. It is 6:31 AM.  Carla stumbles out of her…

Anne Hu’s Short Film “Lunchbox” Unpacks a Complicated Mother-Daughter Relationship

Independent filmmaker Anne Hu is cooking up a new project rooted in her own experience growing up Taiwanese American in a predominantly white suburb of Cleveland. Titled Lunchbox, this short drama will feature modern-day scenes of a woman cooking the foods from her mother’s cookbook, interspersed with childhood memories of her attempts to fit in with her classmates--and the effects this had on her relationship with her mother.  Writer Grace Hwang Lynch chatted with Anne to find out more…

Lithification, and Other Processes, by Dri Chiu Tattersfield

GRAND PRIZE WINNING ENTRY, COLLEGE CATEGORY “In this subtle and imaginative story, Dri Chiu Tattersfield explores questions of identity, family, foreignness and the body. The writing is nuanced and careful and emotionally grounded, evoking a sense of place and depth of feeling. This is an accomplished work by a promising voice.” -Shawna Yang Ryan and Charles Yu, co-judges of the 2021 Betty L. Yu & Jin C. Yu Creative Writing Prizes. The day my body started disappearing began with…

For a Better Life, Move to Taiwan: My Taiwanese American Story

When my mom was twenty, she moved from Taiwan to the United States. Now I’m twenty, and I’m doing everything I can to get back.  There are practical reasons for this, of course. I applied for dual citizenship in high school, and since coronavirus has pushed everything, including my college classes, into the virtual world, Taiwan has become my fabled “land of opportunity.”  But there’s something deeper going on. I’ve spent my whole life trying to prove my “Americanness,”…