One of my journalism mentors once said that stories — especially feature stories — are empathy machines. I couldn't agree more. I read, and write, to walk in someone else's shoes.
Though I love venturing out into the quirky and humorous, I also have a love for investigating and writing feature stories about social, food, healthcare, and environmental justice ;about conservation and animal welfare; and about art, exile, immigration, and political dissent.
And I'm always looking for new and exciting stories to tell. Let's connect.
I was born behind the Iron Curtain to a family of political dissidents. We escaped when I was still very little, right after the Soviet-backed government declared martial law in Poland. We crossed Check Point Charlie by foot and defected to the West in Paris. Some of my earliest memories are of that very journey, but also of tanks we left behind in the streets of Warsaw.
I grew up as a child refugee on political asylum in France, and became an immigrant to Canada at age 10. I've experienced and witnessed autocratic rule, military violence, exile, poverty, hunger, discrimination, and injustice, but also the generosity and kindness of strangers. I am now a landed immigrant in the U.S. I am fluent in French, Spanish, Polish, English, and Joual; I speak Italian, though I may be losing it; and I can get by, though very slowly, in Serbo-Croatian, Portuguese, and German.
I've lived in 11 countries, so far — France, Poland, Canada, Mexico, India, Italy, the U.K., Zambia, Hungary, Hong Kong, and the U.S. — visited over 70 others. I trekked through mountains, valleys, and deserts on five continents. Our planet and its inhabitants are, indeed, magnificent, and some.
I hold a degree in philosophy and Latin, another one in education, a research MA in sociolinguistics and linguistic human rights, as well as both an MA and an MFA in narrative writing. I've had the immense privilege of studying storytelling with some fantastic writers, too: Sigrid Nunez, Ha Jin, Leslie Epstein, Kim Cross, to name but a few.
Today, I live in the high desert and mountains of New Mexico, and work as an independent journalist, editor, and writer. I love animals. I love snow. I love butter. Did I say that I love chatting with strangers? It's one of my favorite things to do.
— Ania Hull
(aka Anna/Ania Prawdzik Hull)