Grace Neaksai Hough is a 21-year-old animation and writing student from Texas graduating with her Bachelor of Science in Visualization in 2022. She has one cat named after the funeral flower “Lily” and four sister cats named after Dracula characters, two of which are technically still (well-fed) strays. Her middle name “Neaksai” is misspelled and her parents still haven’t decided whose fault it was. But if it were spelled “correctly,” it would be confused for either a word meaning a “two-year-old koi fish” or an early 20th-century word meaning “simpleton/idiot.” Sticking with that “k” in the middle sounds like a good idea.
Her specialty is folklore. She can tell you a legend or folktale from Ireland, Cambodia, and elsewhere at the drop of a hat and most or her personal work involves uncanny lore of some sort.
She has two books in progress—one about Halloween, Celtic mythology, and how legends survive in human memory; and the other about ghosts and legends of Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge occupation of the 1970s. The latter is part of a published creative thesis studying stories as a way for second-generation immigrants to reconnect with their parents’ culture. It can be found here.