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About Traci

author Traci Huahn headshot

Traci Huahn (she/her) writes books for kids and especially loves stories rooted in Asian American culture, history, and identity. Mamie Tape Fights to go to School (Crown Books for Young Readers/Penguin Random House) is her debut picture book. As a former attorney and the daughter of Chinese immigrants, Traci feels a deep connection to Mamie’s story and hopes it will inspire young readers to become changemakers, even if it starts by taking just one small step.

Traci was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and still lives close to where she grew up. Most days you can find her there writing, along with her husband, two kids, and their pup who loves belly rubs and Brussels sprouts.

Traci is a co-cordinator of the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators SF North/East Bay region's diversity initiative Tapestry of Voices. She participates in the 12x12 Challenge and is a member of Picture Book Parade and KidLit Carousel.

5 Fun Facts About Me

1.  My last name was invented by my parents when they got married. My dad’s original surname was

     Wong 黃. When speaking or writing in Chinese, that’s still my family name because Huahn doesn’t

     exist as a Chinese word.​ Click to hear how to pronounce my name:

2.  I once backpacked through Europe for ninety-nine days, living mostly on butter biscuits and dark

     chocolate.

3.  I once found a tarantula in my sneaker…after I’d already put my foot into it. (That’s the loudest I’ve ever

     screamed!)

4.  I'm mildly obsessed with tide pools and have been known to wake my family at the crack of dawn to

     catch a low tide. Some of the most interesting sea life I've seen are a baby octopus and gumboot chiton.

     Check out some of my favorite tide pool photos.

5.  The banner at the top of my website combines my own art with a vintage woodblock print of an

     ocean wave by artist Uehara Konen (now public domain). I created it to symbolize my cultural

     heritage from different shores. And because books have the power to take us on amazing journeys.

     I hope you'll enjoy going on new adventures through my stories.

My Writing Journey

I've loved books and reading since I was a kid and fell in love with writing in the 4th grade. (I still have my classroom journal filled with stories of my 9-year-old imagination!) Growing up, my sister and I spent countless hours creating our own magazines–drawing and writing stories about our stuffies, each of whom had an elaborate backstory. Even then, I dreamed of one day writing children’s books.

My love of writing eventually led me to study journalism in college. But I also had a love of research and advocating for others, so after college I went on to law school and became a lawyer (still writing, albeit court briefs and contracts!) In between researching legal cases, I often found myself researching children's literature, looking for books told through an Asian American lens, dreaming of one day adding to the stories that seemed far and few between.

Then life got busy. I attended a few writing conferences and classes over the years, but it wasn't until 2020, amidst the pandemic, when I finally had an aha moment. I realized that I'd better stop waiting for "one day" to arrive, and get busy writing. So I did. I also began attending as many writing classes as I could. And connecting with the KidLit community (who is incredibly supportive of one another). Then, in a moment of serendipity, the story I submitted for a critique through the Kweli Color of Children’s Literature Conference resulted in the offer for my debut picture book. It really never is too late to follow your dreams.

I'm thrilled to now be building my career as a KidLit writer – it truly combines so much of what I love, including advocating for young readers with stories that offer windows into different perspectives and mirrors to feel seen. I hope my journey will inspire others to follow their dreams, whatever they may be. I'll be rooting for you!

childhood photo of author Traci Huahn

Photo of me from childhood, where my love of reading and writing began.

My 4th grade journal.

(click on the image to read it!)

Front cover of author Traci Huahn's childhood journal
How rabbit made the sun childhood story
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