I write YA and kids books about wildfire girls, family curses, and everyday magic. Ever chasing stories, I’ve hiked over 500 miles across Spain on the Camino de Santiago trail, explored elephant sanctuaries in Chiang Mai, backpacked to ancient Mayan ruins in Guatemala, and taught English in the breathtaking city of Prague (all on a shoestring budget).
Roman the Renegade—my middle grade graphic novel about street art, Filipino monsters and messy friendships—was awarded the 2021 New Visions Honor and a publishing contract with Lee & Low Books (forthcoming in 2024). Growing up in San Francisco’s Mission District, Roman was partly inspired by my love of street art, my Filipina grandma’s dementia, and the Minokawa myth (a Filipino legend about a bird-dragon who swallows the sun or moon).
I earned a degree in Psychology and English Literature, so it’s probably no great surprise that I chose to write fiction (though, my mom voted for nurse and my dad voted for astronaut, so maybe there’s a “Grey’s Anatomy in space” novel in my future). In my professional life, I counsel college kids who never let me forget the YA perspective. I’ve honed my craft at workshops such as the Tin House YA Workshop, Madcap Writing Cross-Culturally Retreat, A Room of Her Own Writing Retreat at Ghost Ranch, etc. Read more about my writing and travel adventures here! I’ve also published short stories and poetry.
When I’m not adventuring in real life, you can find me diving into a good book or trying to write with a giant furry monster draped over my lap: