Jenny Qi is a writer, scientist, and science communicator. A child of survivors of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, she spent significant time in her earlier years in Jiangsu Province, China; Las Vegas, NV; and Nashville, TN. She writes across genres, focusing primarily on poetry and nonfiction.
Her essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, and Huffington Post. Her poems are published or forthcoming in Tin House, ZYZZYVA, Figure 1, Bellevue Literary Review, Atticus Review and other journals and anthologies; select poems have been nominated multiple times for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net.
Her writing contains themes of grief and loss as a young adult, the inheritance of trauma, the lived experience of straddling multiple worlds, an exploration of humans as individuals and systems, and the intersection of science and art. Her work is influenced by and responds to both Western and Chinese literature, mythology, and culture, as well as her background as a scientist.
She is completing her first poetry collection, titled I will be somewhere else yesterday. Written during her Ph.D. training in Cancer Biology, she thinks of this manuscript as a second dissertation. An earlier version was a Jake Adam York Prize finalist.
She is also translating her late mother’s memoir from Chinese into English; writing a series of essays about science, grief, and identity; and working on a second chapbook, tentatively titled Machine Learning, which explores the influence of modern technology, the ways in which society acts as a machine, and how we as its members have internalized its rules.
Science & Science Communication
Jenny Qi received her Ph.D. in Biomedical Science (Cancer Biology) from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) in 2017, where she studied novel drug candidates in preclinical models of pancreatic cancer.
She enjoys data analysis and visualization and storytelling. She has worked as a science and medicine editor at UCSF, American Journal Experts, Doximity and elsewhere, writing and editing scientific manuscripts, grant proposals, news articles, blogs and personal essays. Topics included oncology, health insurance, diversity in medicine, medical humanities, hospice & palliative care, and mental health in academia. Her articles may be found here, and more information can be found on LinkedIn.
She was a co-founder, co-host and producer of the science storytelling podcast Bone Lab Radio.
She currently lives in San Francisco. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, makes clay and felt creatures, draws elaborate charts, and takes care of her plants.