Name: Mary Fan
2nd generation Chinese American
What is it about your experience and upbringing that inspired you the most to write?
I was lucky enough to grow up surrounded by books. From the story books my parents used to read me to school and local libraries to my own collections at home… as far as I can remember, my parents never said no when I asked for a book. Because books were always a part of my life, it felt natural to try writing stories of my own.
Name 3 authors and 3 books
American Panda by Gloria Chao
Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C Dao
The Astonishing Color of After by Emily XR Pan
What do you think is the best quality a writer can have?
In my opinion, the best quality a writer can have is empathy for their own characters — to treat them as people living the story rather than chess pieces advancing a plot, and give them emotional depth and human flaws.
Any last words? (Fun facts, comments, something you’d like to share with the world, etc.)
Don’t know if this counts as a fun fact, but I’m currently in the middle of wrapping up the first series conclusion I’ve written in five years (Seize the Stars, 3rd and final installment of the Starswept trilogy). I started writing this series way back in 2013, so it feels really weird to be ending it. Also nerve-wracking. But also rewarding.
Challenge: Write a one-sentence story!
With the red-and-brown clouds of Jupiter swirling ahead, she thrust forward the controls of the stolen shuttle and laughed, knowing that however mad her parents back on the exploration ship would be when they found out what she’d done, they could never say she was too young to pilot again.