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Meet Shanna (Shanshan) Jin

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shanna (Shanshan) Jin.

So, before we jump into specific questions about your work, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was born in China and grew up in a small town in the northeast of Beijing. However, deep inside, I know I always want to travel overseas and see the world. So, I decided to make a bold move by studying abroad and immersing myself in a diverse culture. With a strong passion for storytelling and creative productions, I was very fortunate getting accepted to the Radio-Television-Film program at the University of Texas at Austin. By working on indie projects, I started noticing that more and more people of color are participating in filmmaking and acting, which really inspired me to take a leap of faith in myself and stepped into the acting world.

Now, I have been living in Houston for six years, the film industry is reviving in H-town. As an actor, I’m glad to be a part of the creative community. Besides acting, I’m also a travel/mom blogger in Houston. I like to write down my journeys living in the State as well as sharing stories when I explore other countries. I have traveled to Asia, Europe, and South America, and there is just so much to see and write about each place I visited. Well, my blog Almost Nomadic is not only focusing on travel tips and stories, but also emphasizes living life with an attitude of taking risks, overcoming fears, and just embracing whatever changes life brings.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Being an actor is not an easy career, in general, let alone being an Asian actor who has a Chinese accent. I have to take any acting classes and coaching sessions to help me improve my speech as well as confidence. Also, as a mom of a toddler baby, I find it very challenging to work on any non-local project, which really limits my options of auditions and bookings.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
I’m an actress and blogger, and my website is Almost Nomadic. When I first started my blog, I was an active traveler, who constantly looking for interesting places to explore. I just love the idea of meeting new people, learning new cultures and experiencing life with a curious soul. I also write about the fun film/commercial projects I did, and how to manage life as a working mom.

I hope to inspire women and minorities through my words and stories. Life enters into different phases and I like to think of it as “journeys” and keeping a curious mind helps me “wander” through those phases with a positive attitude. And sometimes a journey might not have a clear direction, but it is totally FINE. Keep that “Almost Nomadic” state-of-mind, and just do what a nomad will do – embrace the uncertainties and the unseens because it’s these unpredictables that make life exciting and fun!

What were you like growing up?
Growing up, I wanted to be a dancer, so I learned Chinese traditional dancing when I was 6th grade, and joined the Student Dance group in college. Even though now I’m not a professional dancer, I still take hip hop class and ballroom dancing here and there. Music and rhythms bring me joy.

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