I Got Published! Also, I Can Drink Wine in a Week

Last year, I submitted one of my creative nonfiction pieces to a publication contest for young LGBTQIA+ writers. I did not have high hopes for winning just as I do not have high hopes that the men in my life will text me back. But I heard from one of the editors that they selected my piece – one of seven they chose out of almost 400 – and now it has arrived. As Patrick from SpongeBob would say, look at it (and check it out on Amazon here):

full spectrum featuring thomas hungers

It’s out! Just like me. Part of the proceeds go to support GLSEN.

The piece centers on my eating disorder from my early adolescence. Without giving too much away, I will say it delves into the intersection of mental health, sexuality, and race. It only takes up a few pages, which I appreciate, because that leaves room for many other young LGBTQIA voices. Because I turn 21 in a week, the piece triggers an interesting set of emotions for me. It feels both odd and fitting that the events in the piece took place in the range of seven to nine years ago.

Some days, I wish I could go back and tell my early adolescent self the classic line from the fabulous campaign for LGBT youth: it gets better. Awful stuff went down in my past, and I dealt with it in unhealthful ways. I do not blame myself. How, as a kid, could I have known about mindfulness, about how to report abuse, about other more self-compassionate coping strategies? We teach quadratic equations and world history in schools, not lessons about emotional well-being and recognizing red flags. If only thirteen-year-old me could have seen myself now: confident in my compassion, humble and aware of my privilege, and flying and driving around the country for conferences and workshops.

I hope my words – and the courageous, vulnerable words of others in this collection – can reach those who need it. If you’re lucky, life is long, and better days do await. Just look at me. Eight years ago I spent every day worrying about what to eat. Now, I spend my days writing, researching, and facing life’s challenges with an open heart and a full stomach. Now, I can drink wine in a week, and I could not feel more content.

dangerous woman thomas ten two days crying tears oh my grande

Continuing the selfie trend on this blog: a snapchat selfie relating to Ariana Grande’s upcoming album. Two more days, friends. Best early birthday present ever.

I hope you all are doing well. Thank you again so much for the support over the years and for honoring my voice when I needed it most. Expect another post next week. Also, if you are interested, I published a news report on Asian American mental health as well. See you all again soon!


Filed under Books, Personal

18 responses to “I Got Published! Also, I Can Drink Wine in a Week

  1. Andreas

    Congratulations on having your work published, Thomas! I’m so happy for you 🙂 And I was wondering if that is the correct book jacket that includes your work as I’m going to order it online. Can’t wait to read it! I hope you continue to keep writing and inspire others with your stories.

    • Hi Andreas, thank you so much for your kind comment and for sticking with me throughout all these years! Yes, that is the correct book jacket – as long as it says “expanded edition” it should be the right one. Hope you enjoy it and would love to hear your thoughts, not just on my piece, but on the collection as a whole.

  2. Alexis

    Congratulations on getting published!! That is amazing news for me to hear right before bedtime 🙂 You are a talented writer, and I am glad that others are recognizing that fact. Good luck on your future endeavors!

  3. Congratulations – you should be really proud of yourself. Watching you flourish and grow is such a privilege and honour. It took me until my 30s to get anywhere near where you are now and until then to talk about it, too. I salute you, as always!

  4. Congratulations!! That is so exciting!! 😀

  5. Aaaww yiss. Congrats, Thomas!

  6. 7/400? Oh my gosh, that is so awesome, Thomas! Congratulations! It’s also great that David Levithan helped with this project. I’ve only read Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist by him but he’s a prominent voice in YA and has really made strides with getting more readers to read YA LGBTQ+ books. And happy early birthday! Don’t go crazy on the wine. 😉 (I know you won’t, haha.) And jam to a lot of Ariana Grande and treat yourself with your favorite food! 😀

    • Thank you so much, Summer! Yes, it is indeed a great honor to have David Levithan’s name on this project, and I am super grateful for him and Billy Merrell for uplifting young LGBTQIA+ voices. I’m keeping it chill today so no worries about going crazy on wine, though I am flying out to a conference tomorrow in Chicago, and we’ll see what happens there. Hope you are having a wonderful day!

  7. Ruth

    Congratulations on the publication!
    I’m really happy to read that you’re happy.

  8. Jas

    That’s so exciting, congrats! I actually ordered this book for the Women’s and Gender Studies library that I work in at my university just last month- I had no idea you were published in it, I’m so much more excited to read it now!! Bravo.

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