Ryan, Shawna Yang

Associate Professor, English Department
Director, Creative Writing Program
2017-2018 Chair, Dai Ho Chun Endowed Programs in Arts & Sciences Committee
University of Hawai’i at Manoa

Office: 713 Kuykendall
Office Phone: (808) 956-3071
Email: slryan@hawaii.edu

B.A. UC Berkeley, English
M.A. UC Davis, English

First published in 2007 by El Leon Literary Arts under the title Locke 1928, her debut novel was re-issued by The Penguin Press as Water Ghosts in 2009. It was a San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller, the 2006 winner of the UC Davis Maurice Prize, a finalist for the 2008 Northern California Book Award, and long-listed for the 2010 Asian American Literary Award. Booklist called Water Ghosts “accomplished and affecting,” while The Boston Globe has declared her “a writer to watch.”

Her writing has appeared in ZYZZYVA, The Asian American Literary Review, Kartika Review, The Washington Post, Lithub, and The Berkeley Fiction Review.

Her second novel, GREEN ISLAND (Knopf 2016) received a starred review from Booklist (“absorbing and affecting”), was Penguin Random House International’s first pick for their OneWorldOneBook program, an Amazon Best Book of February 2016, and received a 2017 American Book Award and the 2018 award for Best Book in Creative Writing (prose) from the Association for Asian American Studies.

Beyond her fiction, she is the co-creator of the website Our Taiwanese American Story, which is dedicated to collecting and archiving the stories of members of the Taiwanese diaspora. She also serves on the board of the North American Taiwanese Professors Association, an organization originally founded in resistance to Taiwan’s repressive White Terror era policies.