About

Hi, I’m Mabel.

I’m a writer, blogger and an introvert.

On this blog you’ll find my thoughts about cultural norms, what it means to be Asian in Australia and introversion. This blog is also a space where I share my passion for writing – and where I motivate others to be creative no matter their background.

I was born in Melbourne, Australia, to Chinese-Malaysian migrant parents. For about a decade, I lived in Malaysia and Singapore, finishing school in Asia and then moving back to Melbourne.

Living in and traveling around different countries, I’ve learnt to appreciate diversity. When you interact with people from different backgrounds, you see things from different perspectives.

I believe it takes an open mind to facilitate conversations with people of different cultures. We all have different opinions, different roles and are unique in our own ways. None of us have all the answers to every question. The world and cultures are constantly changing. The least we can do is listen and learn from each other.

Being Asian Australian and introverted

I often find myself transitioning between an identity favouring Chinese values and one taking on the Australian / Western mindset.

I’ve always felt too Asian or not-Asian enough in countless situations. It didn’t help that I was an introvert growing up and still am. My parents, teachers, colleagues and friends labelled me, ‘too quiet’ and ‘so shy’ while encouraging me to excel at science instead of writing which I loved. I was conditioned to be a model-minority Asian stereotype.

For a long time I felt unimportant, confused about my cross-cultural affiliations and reserved personality, having no direction as a writer. The more I tried being the life of the party and speaking up at every opportunity, the more drained and ‘not enough’ I felt – especially in a predominantly Anglo-Saxon Australia where many are extroverted. Or just loud.

One day I realised the fire within me to write and motivate others through words wasn’t going away. I realised writing to enhance others’ perceptions and personal power gives me a sense of purpose.

I then studied in Cultural Studies at university, focusing on ethnic identity construction and performance through media platforms. While studying, I spent solitary weeks on end honing persuasive writing techniques and applied research expertise – and never felt more comfortable being productive and present in silence and stillness.

Following that I keenly worked in journalism and radio in Melbourne. The likable-outgoing-personality driven industry made me realise that a media career wasn’t for me.

Thereafter I took on freelance writing work and started this blog. Again I thrived working on in solitude, trusting my inner voice and nurturing my subconscious to awaken clarity surrounding my craft. Using writing as a tool to help others reflect and reach their potential, I mentored clients on articulating their online brand, contributed self-help features for publications and built a highly engaged global audience on this blog.

Yarra River. Yarra River. Melbourne, Victoria, Australia | Naarm, the land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation.Melbourne, Victoria. Australia.

Yarra River. Melbourne, Victoria, Australia | Naarm, the land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation.

Today I’m a proud introverted creative and embrace both Asian and Western identities. I’m an accomplished writer who still listens before speaking, takes off shoes at home and saves more than I spend. Still a stereotype but also not a stereotype.

Being an introvert caught in-between cultures is often seen as problematic and not normal. It shouldn’t be. Being part of different cultures is a privilege, and introverts are deep thinkers, thoughtful decision-makers and generous friends.

You don’t have to be outspoken all the time to make an impact in the creative sphere or anywhere else. You can be quiet and contemplative and find success and purpose in what you do.

My written work

Guided by introversion and intuition, my mission is to help you negotiate cultural identities while cultivating creative passions. Through narrative non-fiction writing, I help you to be confident within your unique identities – rising above limiting cultural beliefs by embracing the power of introversion.

My writing focuses on exploring conflicting cultural identities, the significance of everyday habits and transience within ethnic groups – and most certainly highlighting the importance of introversion in an extroverted world. Through my blog and broader work, I encourage you to:

  • Identify and harness both stereotypical and non-stereotypical traits as strengths
  • Gain insights into managing cultural identity crisis and prioritising self-acceptance
  • Acquire ways to have honest, level-headed conversations on culturally sensitive topics
  • Learn strategies to balance being realistic and quietly, confidently pursue creative passions

My interests and other topics I write about include Asian diasporas, media relations and the writing process.

Outside of this blog, I take on freelance writing work. I’m also writing a book about being Asian Australian, belonging and the challenges of being creative. In my spare time I am a landscape photographer, read, play video games and am into astrology.

Thanks for reading.

353 thoughts on “About

  1. First, thanks for the follow. Second, I like you!!! We have several things in common so that explains my three “!” before this sentence 🙂 Plus, I’ve always liked the way you engage in discussions over at Lani’s blog. I know it’s safe to say you are much younger than me, judging by looks alone, but I feel quite a maturity in you. Good luck on your book 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Your blog is quite refreshing!
    I love to read about your perspective as an Asian Australian, as I believe that not many people are aware about that.
    I have a question if I may ask. How come you spent overseas in Malaysia and Singapore for school?
    It honestly sounds amazing, and I do quite envy you!
    I wish I was raised for a significant time either in Burma or Thailand.
    Did you accent changed a lot when you came back to Oz?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Suaylia. You are very kind and thank you so much for reading 🙂

      My family was the “parachute” kind of family, with my dad traveling a lot of for work. So, my family got to live in Singapore and Malaysia when I was a kid, and even when we moved around within these countries quite a bit.

      As for my accent, it has always been evolving. These days, in some situations I sound more Australian than Malaysian and vice-versa in other situations. But when I think in my head, it’s mostly Malaysian.

      Your background sounds very interesting and unique, and you must have your own unique story to tell 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi Mabel
    Thanks for dropping by my blog and taking the time to leave a comment, appreciated. I noticed the alignment of the stars when framing the shot, so tried to include as much of the sky without cropping too much of the road. Considered using a wider angle lens, but thought it would reduce the scale of the mountain, so stayed with the 24mm instead :-):-).

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Hello,AmazingBlog You have,very happy to be here,hey please if you have some time take a look on my site and tell me what You think about my photos,i appreciate ,not much people visit me because my photos is weak ? i want to know Your opinion ,if You can tell somebody , tell friends about me about me i do not want to die in silence of art , Take care good soul

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Spring Forward | A View From My Summerhouse

  6. Enjoying reading some of your posts, Mabel! As an Asian (Sri Lankan) living abroad as well, I share a lot of your experiences. Thanks for commenting on my blog, and I’m looking forward to following yours and reading more! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hey Mabel, thought I would say hi and encourage you with a thank you. I’ve been reading a few of your posts and they have been a blessing to me. You speak well and I quoted you in one of my own blog posts! Your experiences helped clear up mine as a Chinese-American, and I didn’t realize that Asians in Australia face similar issues. Keep on writing!

    Moire

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for the kind words, Moire. I really loved the ‘…why are you white?’ post that you wrote. It has so many thoughts on being Chinese-American, and you also voiced some of my feelings which I haven’t been able to describe in words. Personality vs values is such an important concept to think about and you have made me look at it in a different way. Once again, thank you so much and it is so lovely to have connected 🙂

      Like

  8. Hello! I just discovered your blog – I am a Malaysian migrated to Sydney after studying and falling in love with this beautiful country. However, there are some darker sides to life in the lucky country and some of your posts really strike a chord on what being ‘Asian Australian’ is. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for stopping by, Sue-Wen. It is so true there is a darker side to life in Australia – it’s a fact and something all of us should talk more about. Stay safe and take care.

      Like

  9. Pingback: April Upcoming Events | Texas Festies

  10. HI Mabel! It’s great to meet you & find your blog! As someone who is still struggling to find that perfect compromise between Chinese values and Western mindsets, I completely understand the transition you make in everyday situations. I look forward to reading posts on your blog and engaging in discussions on multiculturalism and diversity 🙂

    ~Jade

    P.S. I’m also Chinese-Malaysian!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It really is so hard to find a compromise between Chinese and Western values… I guess people will talk and judge but at the end of the day, our lives is ours to live. Amazing you are Chinese-Malaysian too! So glad to have connected with you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi Mabel! So lovely to meet you! Thanks again for visiting my blog earlier today. 🙂 What a fun photo you have of Link trying to pick up a fight with you. 😉 I look forward discovering and reading your blog! We seem to have a lot in common, apart from all things art – and here I include writing as well – I´m also very interested in multiculturalism. Have a happy weekend! 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I love the charming drawing on your banner and pleased that you commented on my blog yesterday. Now, I’m commenting on yours.

    There is much to admire here, including the fact that you embrace diversity. Again, thank you, Mabel!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, Marian. The header was designed by a wonderful artist called Anna/Pinodesk 🙂 So lovely of you to stop by here, Marian. You are very kind and hope you have a wonderful day!

      Like

  13. Pingback: Mini Interview with Amanda @ Something to Ponder (For the Love of Quotes…) – priorhouse blog

  14. Mabel, you are both an inspiration for one so young and also wise beyond your years. Writing about yourself speaks to me…resonates with me. I was raised in an ethnically diverse family in a middle class neighborhood where the majority of residents were Caucasian. Growing up I could never really figure out where I belonged. My mother of German, Irish and English decent and my father of Catalonia, French, German and Native American decent. Two very different worlds. It has taken me a lifetime to know who it is I am, uniquely made and very much an individual. I, too, am an introvert so it has been difficult to be in a world where being social is to belong. I write, create art and read abundantly. I now do not have quite the difficulty I used to when being out in the social arena but still, I prefer being alone for my thoughts are always fluttering within me. I will follow you here and I am happy you visited my site. You can know a bit more about me by reading my About page. Do take good care.

    Like

    • It is very kind of you to stop by and check out my blog, Renee. Thank you so much, and thank you for sharing a bit about yourself. It sounds like you came from a very diverse family – two different worlds as you said, which has its pros and cons. While it’s great being a part of different ethnicities and being more aware about the world, fitting in can be difficult – cultural identities can be so conflicting and contrasting.

      That is great you have embraced being introverted and you channel that towards writing, reading and being creative. Being introverted comes with many strengths and I hope many introverts see that.

      You take care too, Renee. I have followed your blog. Looking forward to visiting again soon.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you for you comments here. The world is a ‘social’ place and due to many factors I cannot go into here, it has been difficult to learn to be myself and still be social when necessity arises…and it does. I raised five children which added another degree of difficulty. If you would like to know a bit more about me go to my About page. Thank you again and I look forward to following you as well. Take good care, Mabel.

        Like

        • The world is indeed a social place, so much pressure on each of us to be social and mingle. It was a pleasure reading your About page and get to know you better, Renee. Keep being yourself and keep writing.

          Like

  15. Pingback: Hydrants & Quotes: The price of anything is the amount of LIFE you exchange for it… – priorhouse blog

  16. Pingback: Fire Hydrants & Quotes Take Two (3May2022) – priorhouse blog

  17. Pingback: Author Mabel Kwong- PRIORHOUSE INTERVIEW (MAY 2022) – priorhouse blog

Leave a Reply to Jessica Yip Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.