Susan Kim talks about how being childish has been key to being able to support herself as a writer.
“When I was young, storytelling was a happy place for me. We moved around a lot, so I was the new kid, and the only Asian kid, and that was rough. As I got older, I found that other people wanted to hear my stories and that became a way for me to meet people and to be accepted. In that sense, I sang for my supper.”
Kim’s playful approach to writing results in different story forms and tones. Her published credits include dramatic writing (plays, television, documentary, screenwriting), fiction (short stories, young adult, sci-fi), creative nonfiction and graphic novels, and her tastes run from humor to literary horror. But what drives her is not at all childish: she takes on issues of female empowerment, privilege, institutionalized racism and classism, but always through the lens of human behavior. She says that writing is “the most honest thing you can do, to understand who you are, your weaknesses, demons and angels.”
What urgent truths, what demons and angels, do you want to get onto the page?
Music credits: “Gaena” by Blue Dot Sessions, Album: Azalai; “Shift of Currents” by Blue Dot Sessions, Album: Aeronaut; “Basketliner” by Blue Dot Sessions, Album: Bitters.
Read more from Susan, as well as the other faculty, alumni and students from the Goddard MFA in Creative Writing community, at the blog The Writer in the World.