Name: Yumi Nunes
School: Patriot High
Hobbies and Interests: Writing, reading, storytelling.
Appearance: Yumi stands about 5'7" and weighs 135 pounds, making her somewhat underweight. Her lightish-tan skin shows signs of both her Asian and Brazilian heritage. Her frame is quite skinny and lacks any noticable curves. She has a small nose, thin lips, and dark eyes that peek out from the bangs of her black hair. Her hair is straight, if a bit unkempt, and reaches to the base of her neck.
She dresses very casually, although this is mostly a result of an impoverished lifestyle. Plain T-shirts and old jeans are the norm in her everyday fashion. Her shoes are sneakers from a thrift store, and are often worn and tattered. Any coats she wears during cold weather are always either too big or clearly bargain-bin material. She never wears makeup of any sort.
On Announcement Day, she was wearing a gray T-shirt with blue capris whose colors had faded to the point that they were almost a light gray, and were not made any better looking by the grass and dirt stains on the knees. On her feet were a pair of white sneakers that were showing clear signs of wear and tear.
Biography: Yumi was born to Guillerme and Yukiko Nunes, a Brazillian immigrant and a Japanese immigrant respectively. They were both fifth-generation immigrants who had fairly humble backgrounds. It was in high school that the two met and fell in love. They wed shortly after graduating. Unfortunately for the Nunes, money was a constant issue. Guillerme had a dead-end office job, and Yukiko worked in a grocery store. Despite doing good work, they were constantly passed over for promotions due to their heritage. Neither of their jobs paid very well, and they were forced to live in a low-income neighborhood.
Yumi was the pride and joy of her parents, and they always thought of her in order to inspire them to get through the day. Growing up, Yumi was always proud of her parents. She thought that they were the hardest workers in the world. Unfortunately, their work schedules meant that they were away from home for most of the day, so Guillerme's parents watched Yumi for most of her childhood. Yumi loved her grandparents as much as she loved her parents, and she views them in a similar light. Yumi never resented her parents for being away from home as much as they were, because she knew that they had to work in order to make money, and that they needed money for food and clothes.
Yumi quickly took a shine to writing, and she would write whatever came to mind. She would show her stories to her parents, and they would put them on the refrigerator to display. Once the fridge ran out of room, her parents bought her a journal to write in. Yumi would write in her journal almost every day, allowing her imagination to run wild on the pages. Yumi was also an avid reader,regularly spending more time with her storybooks than she did playing with toys. She loved all types of stories, from lighthearted tales to epic adventures. By the time she was thirteen, she was creating huge stories in her journals with her own unique characters and vast plotlines. She decided that she wanted to be an author, because she wanted to share her stories with the world. Her parents were highly supportive of her goal, and did everything in their ability to encourage her.
Yumi's life was never without hardship, however. She is painfully aware of her own poverty. Her parents still work long hours, and they each only have one day off a week. They have also been in danger of losing their house in the past, which forced her parents to work even longer hours than before, so now she only sees them in the early morning and late evening. She often wishes that they had more money so that she would be able to spend more time with her parents. Her family's constant state of poverty has vastly restricted her material posessions. Her lack of spending money has also made shopping trips incredibly rare, usually going clothes shopping only once or twice a year. Even when she does go shopping, she can only afford to visit thrift stores and other such establishments. Her limited wardrobe has caused her to be the subject of teasing on more than one occasion by the more wealthy students.
Racism was another factor that had a largely negative influence on Yumi's life. Her mixed heritage caused her to be somewhat of a pariah to other students. She acquired cruel nicknames such as "half-breed" and "mongrel" from various bullies. She always felt that she should be proud of who she was, but time and time again other students have belittled her for that reason. They tell her that she is useless, and that she can never succeed, all because she is not a "real American." The other students would continually harass and humiliate her for things that she had no control over. She became a very introverted and lonely teenager as a result. She was still sociable with her family, but she was hesitant to socialize with other students, even to the point of seeming fearful of them.
Yumi's most humiliating moment would be when she attempted to submit a short story to be published in a student-run magazine. She had spent days brainstorming and putting her best ideas on paper, and she felt that it was her finest work yet. She presented her story to the student editor, and he threw it in the garbage after vaguely glancing at it. She asked why it wasn't good enough, but she was only told not to submit anything again. Yumi went home in tears, and it broke her parents' hearts to see their daughter in such pain. Her parents talked to the school board about the incident, and the student that rejected the story merely said that he "didn't feel that it met his expectations as an editor." Since the editor was an honor student held in high regard by the system, the school board believed him. To this day, Yumi still doesn't know why her story was rejected, and after that incident she began doubting whether she would ever be able to fufill her dream of being an author.
In school, Yumi does quite well in her classes. She gets decent grades in most subjects, except for English, which she constantly scores top marks in. Her teachers view her as a bright, but rather shy and quiet student. Yumi actively tries to avoid other students, as her past experiences with them have almost always been negative. She doesn't want to be ridiculed or abused as she has in the past, and she figures that as long as she stays away from everyone, then nobody can hurt her. There are a few students that Yumi can speak to without fear, but they are few and far between.
One of the few bright spots in Yumi's life is the public library, where she spends a lot of her free time. Yumi does a lot of reading at the library, and if she finds a book that she particularly likes, she checks it out and spends the next week or so reading it at home. It was at the library that she discovered another passion in her life: storytelling. Yumi signed up for a program at the library where volunteers would read stories to children. When Yumi reads, she narrates the stories calmly and gives each character a voice to match their personality. The children listen to her and applaud when she finishes, occasionally asking her to read another story, which she is usually more than willing to do. She continues to volunteer at the library every Saturday to read. It is an escape from her school life that she desperately needs.
Advantages: Yumi is very bright and creative, and she could use those gifts to think her way out of difficult situations.
Disadvantages: Yumi does not trust the other students, and is actually somewhat afraid of them. This would make finding allies exceedingly difficult. In addition, her light frame could lead to her getting easily overpowered by another student.
Hey Aura! Yumi's off to a good start, but she's DENIED pending some changes.
First off, a super minor nitpick- pants that go down to your shins aren't shorts, they're capris.
Moving onto the more problematic stuff. You mention that Yumi's parents were immigrants who came looking for a better life, but that her paternal grandparents watch her. Did her father come with his family? This is made somewhat unclear in the profile. Further, if Yumi rarely sees her parents, what is their relationship like? Are there strains from lack of interaction? Is there a lack of closeness? Further, what is Yumi's relationship with her grandparents like? Also, it's important to remember that immigration in Program America is quite difficult, so why would her parents do it?
Why did Yumi start writing? Did someone encourage her? How could she teach herself to read? That's nearly impossible, and it seems highly unlikely at such a young age, especially surrounded by so many adult figures. What genres does Yumi like reading or writing?
How does Yumi feel about her own poverty? Is she aware of the direness of her own situation?
I understand that Program is set in a highly racist version of America, but somehow I find a school official outright telling Yumi that they won't accept her story because she's of a certain race highly implausible. For one, this could very easily get the school in huge amounts of trouble- racism is de facto, not lawful. Secondly, there are a whole lot of ways to reject her story without bringing her race into it. Calling it out directly, to her face, is harsh overkill, and would probably get that employee in hot water should anyone who cared found out.
What are Yumi's grades in school like? What are her favorite subjects? She's not very social, but she must have some friends- what social circles does she generally run in?
You also don't really bring up reading or storytelling in the bio despite them both being interests. I'd like to see those interests flushed out more.
Post when you have the edits and I'll take another look!