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" I'd behave savagely if I had access to Bjoerk's closet. "
" It's okay if someone is disgusted or offended by my performance. It's just a performance. "
" Growing up, I had to cobble together a scarecrow of things I loved from various different writers. "
" As you get older, you realize you're only the protagonist in your own story and a blip in someone else's life. "
" My privileged upbringing and education and linguistic fluency gave me such proximity to whiteness that it stung all the more to still find myself outside of it. My mother, on the other hand, not only accepted that she would always be an outsider in this country but also believed it to be a finer fate and home than any other she could have had. "
" I went to school in California, at Stanford when I was seventeen, and I lived in San Francisco until I was twenty-three, and then I lived in Hungary for, like, a summer, and then I went to Iowa for three years. At Iowa, I actually did the fiction program, not poetry. I was a fiction writer for a long time before I was 'out' as a poet. "
" I lived so completely in my mind - a place of unchecked delusion and complete fantasy! "
" When I was writing stories about Chinese American characters in my fiction classes, I'd get comments like, 'You should consider writing more universal stories.' But anything can happen to a Chinese American girl - just as much of the canon of English literature involves white men or women. "
" Shanghai, the city where I was born and spent my first four and a half years. It's not necessarily the most pleasant or most comforting place, but I have blood memory there, my core was formed there, so I need to go back often, or else I become empty, lost, without meaning. "
" There's so much of our behavior that kind of curdles and hardens as we get into adulthood, and it becomes so much more difficult to be hopeful and to dream extravagantly. "
" Asian American success is often presented as something of a horror - robotic, unfeeling machines psychotically hellbent on excelling, products of abusive tiger parenting who care only about test scores and perfection, driven to succeed without even knowing why. "
" Karaoke was my family's happy secret. In those early years in America, like many immigrants, my parents struggled with poverty and loneliness, but they also built provisional families, and inside our bubble there was joy, understanding, an intimate language I could never translate - and above all there was song. "
" I think Lena Dunham, the public figure, is - I hate the word 'brand,' but I'm going to use it - it's such a brand that is so tethered to her public persona and to 'Girls', but also this progressive politics that she's been more vocal about. "
" I grew up in a Chinese American enclave where the person who lived down the street had literally lived down the street from my mother in Shanghai. "
" Of course I want the things I write to reflect well on me or anyone who might feel represented by me, but also, I'm not writing a guidebook on how to be or how my people should be seen. I'm telling very specific stories. "
" Mothers have always held such symbolic weight in determining a person's worth. Your mother tongue, your motherland, your mother's values - these things can qualify or disqualify you from attaining myriad American dreams: love, fluency, citizenship, legitimacy, acceptance, success, freedom. "
" When it comes to love, maturity often gets a bad rap - second love is boring; it's practical. It's what our parents feel for each other. "
" Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner, who founded Lenny Books together, also happen to have exquisite reading tastes - from obscure small press poetry chapbook to dishy memoirs to literary novels - and so it's a real honor that they've chosen to announce their imprint with my stories. "
" As I got older, I realised that people saw me as other things - sometimes Korean, sometimes Japanese, sometimes just Asian. When my family moved to a more affluent white neighbourhood, I started to see myself as 'other', this amorphous category. I didn't even know what 'not other' was, but I knew I wasn't it; I wasn't what was normal. "
" I wish I had acted better. I wish I had been the kind of sister who was patient enough to show my brother the proper spelling for 'Power Rangers.' "
" When I was a graduate student at the Iowa Writers' Workshop for fiction writing, I felt both coveted and hated. My white classmates never failed to remind me that I was more fortunate than they were at this particular juncture in American literature. "
" From its very inception, Lenny Letter set out to create a supportive, positive, inclusive space on the Internet that does not shy away from complexity and nuance. "
" I seem to be drawn to these smaller forms, and I seem to be drawn to things that can be written and also read in one sitting. "
" When I first moved from Shanghai when I was five, I just thought of myself as Chinese. "