Monday, October 12, 2015

Susan UHH Interview

I was fortunate to be interviewed by Susan Enright from the UH Hilo Stories through the Office of the Chancellor.  For the published interview, click here.

Can you tell me little bit about the book and what it means to you to return to UH Hilo to share it?
5 Senses is a YA urban fantasy about a friendship between Jaime and Iris.  He and Iris leave home to search for her family since she was adopted at a young age.
I hate to sound cliche but this Talk Story Session is almost like coming full circle.  I attended UHH straight out of high school and though many people say those are your formative years, for me, my formative years were the years I attended UHH.  I joined many organization, learned to network and work with people from various backgrounds.  There are so many opportunities and resources at our disposal at UHH and I just wanted to share what I knew with the students.

Lobbying at the Honolulu Legistlator as a member of the University of Hawaii at Hilo Student Association

Where are you living and working now?

Working with cute stuffed animals and hand puppets and Banned Books

I'm currently living in Hilo and working at the best mom and pop bookstore in Hilo, Basically Books.  They're an indie publisher similar to one that I published through and they have many selections of books based on Hawaiian culture.  I'll be moving to Bangkok in December.  It'll be a big adventure but I'm hoping I'll be getting a lot of inspiration since that last time I lived abroad inspired me to write this book.

And I'm curious about how your studies at UH Hilo have contributed to your writing and other current work.

UH Hilo is like a second home to me because I feel like a good portion of my learning happen through or was associated in some way.  I took a Fiction Writing WI class that not only inspired me to write but also have confidence as a writer.  I'm a Japanese Studies major and my last year I had the opportunity to  study abroad.  During my time there I actually wrote a lot about my experiences in a new culture and learning a new language but also came up with the main concepts of this book while I was there.  I'm currently working on on a project with the Center for Global Exchange to put together stories from Alumni about their culture shock and their experiences while they were studying or traveling abroad.  

  Thank you, Susan, for the interview.