“What Nobody Knows About Josephine” | Popshot Magazine

(Illustration by the talented Silvia Stecher)

Popshot Magazine was one of the first literary magazines I’d ever read. I remember flipping through the incredible writing and beautiful illustrations, imagining how I would feel if I could get a story published there too.

Today, I can tell you what it feels like.

Continue reading ““What Nobody Knows About Josephine” | Popshot Magazine”

“The Family Ghost” | Drunk Monkeys

“The Family Ghost” was actually inspired by a twitter thread. I know, very 2020.

Read “The Family Ghost” here!

The Twitter thread was about creepy things children have said to their parents. One person said that their kid talked about watching them before they were born. Weird and compelling and great inspiration for a story.

Continue reading ““The Family Ghost” | Drunk Monkeys”

“Caretaker” | Marías at Sampaguitas

Big thing announcement!

I have a fiction piece published!

I am so honored to have “Caretaker” published online by Marías at Sampaguitas. It’s a short story about an immigrant girl who has to juggle her familial duty and her dreams of independence. It’s based on my own experience as a daughter of immigrant parents, as well as the stories I’ve heard from family caretakers. They make many sacrifices for their loved ones—sacrifices that often go unseen.

Continue reading ““Caretaker” | Marías at Sampaguitas”

“A Letter” | She Leads Daily

My piece “A Letter…” was recently published in an edition of “She Leads Daily”. I’m still learning to be brave enough to submit more creative pieces, and the editor at SLD was kind enough to encourage me to write this piece for the magazine.

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Book Review: “Six of Crows” by Leigh Bardugo

I am always up for YA, and I am always up for fantasy, so why I didn’t pick up “Six of Crows” sooner – I’m not sure. What I am sure of, however, is that this is a totally delightful book.

Warning: spoilers!

Six of Crows (Six of Crows, #1)

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had heard many good things about “Six of Crows” for years before, on a whim, I flipped through it at a bookstore. Craving a good ol YA fantasy, I bit the bullet and gave in to the recommendations.

It was, in short, an act of beautiful fate, because this is a wonderful, wonderful book.

*lighter than air spoilers ahead*

(view spoiler)

In the Q&A at the back of the book, author Leigh Bardugo says that she came up with the idea of a “magical heist” after thinking about “Ocean’s Eleven.” I think that’s a pretty good summary of what “Six of Crows” is, though it goes so much further than a simple theft. The is a magical, clever, heart-wrenching story of an impossible heist and the lives that led up to it. If you like YA, fantasy, or both, this story is for you.
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I liked “Six of Crows” so much that it inspired me to stay on top of my Goodreads reviews (we’ll see how that goes) and prompted me to get the sequel ASAP.

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I’ve already got “Crooked Kingdom” and am reading it right now! Stay tuned for that review coming soon!

On the little ways I’m getting more rest

Rest is highly unappreciated. Many people define “success” with “busy-ness,” meaning I, like many others, tend to feel useless if I’m not doing something to further my work. We hear about how CEOs read a billion times a week, how successful people are those that work the longest hours, and inevitably we are discouraged from giving our brains and our bodies a break.

But rest is really important for the brain. Science says so. No matter what kind of body you have, it’s unhealthy, not admirable, to overwork yourself.

Last year, I left very little time for rest and found that being tired did nothing to help my productivity – in fact, it ended up hurting me in the long run. I really believed I would have felt happier and more fulfilled if i had only taken the time to rest once in a while.

I’m trying to rest more this year. It isn’t easy, but I’ve started compiling a list of things that help me relax. Here’s what I have so far:

  • Singing along to music in the car (as loudly as you want)
  • Going out of my way to get food I really like.
  • Taking a walk. I often like going to the mall just to walk around – the idea is to get myself moving.
  • Going to a coffee shop, getting a drink, and just sitting. No working.
  • Watching a show on TV without any other tabs open (this is really hard, I’m still working on this one).
  • Pausing and focusing on my breathing for a few minutes (the Psalm 46:10 rule)
  • Dedicating time in the morning to read. Even just a few minutes of reading helps me feel like I’ve started my day both calmly and productively.

The more I practice these little rests, the happier I feel. I still work hard, of course. But allowing myself to eat something nice, or to take a walk, or even to just breathe for a few minutes feels so luxuriously good. It really puts me in a better mood.

Everyone out there has their own ways of resting, and I hope everyone finds out what they are. I’m looking out for more ways to rest in 2018.