Messy Roots: Laura Gao's journey from Wuhan to Published Graphic Novelist

May 5, 2022, 5:00 – 6:00 PM

Hosted by Asana

About this event

Celebrate Pan Asian and Pacific Islander (PAPI) Heritage Month with Laura Gao, author of Messy Roots: A Graphic Memoir of a Wuhanese American, and Asanapac, Asana's ERG supporting the API community. At this virtual event,  Laura Gao will discuss her experience as a Queer, Asian, immigrant author and artist. 

During the event, you'll be able to:

  • Learn how Laura Gao launched her creative career, what the graphic memoir creation process was like, and how she made tough creative decisions
  • Hear Laura Gao read an excerpt of her debut graphic novel, Messy Roots: A Graphic Memoir of a Wuhanese American
  • Get your questions answered in Q&A

RSVP today to reserve your seat!

About Laura Gao

Laura Gao is a 25-year-old queer artist, author, and bread lover. Originally from Wuhan, China, Gao immigrated to a small town in Texas when she was four. Gao's art career began by doodling on Pokémon cards and has since blossomed to be featured on NPR, the MOCA in NYC, and most notably, her parents’ fridge. Her debut graphic memoir, MESSY ROOTS, will be published on March 8, 2022 with HarperCollins.

Gao graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2018. She worked at Twitter as a Product Manager until 2020, when her webcomic, "The Wuhan I Know", went viral on Twitter and ignited her art career. She swears on Jack Dorsey's beard she did not pull any strings to go viral, and wishes people would stop asking her for tips. Besides drawing and complaining about early-onset back pain, Gao enjoys living nomadically and biking around the world, designing apps for non-profits, bakery-hunting, and watching SNL. Laura’s pronouns are she/her and they/them.

About Asanapac

Asanapac's mission is to celebrate and empower the Pan Asian and Pacific Islander (PAPI) community at Asana. We do this through:

  1. Providing a platform to support and acknowledge the diverse set of cultures and experiences within the PAPI community;
  2. Creating spaces to connect the PAPI community, allies and the wider Asana community to build awareness and foster a sense of inclusion and belonging;
  3. Growing the PAPI community professionally and personally through programs and partnerships.

About Asana

Asana powers businesses by organizing work in one connected space, from small projects to strategic initiatives. Millions of teams around the world rely on Asana to achieve their most important goals, faster. Asana has been named a Top 10 Best Workplace for 5 years in a row, Fortune's #1 Best Workplace in the Bay Area, and one of Glassdoor’s and Inc.’s Best Places to Work. Asana has also ranked #15 Fast Company’s World’s Most Innovative Companies list and #1 in the Workplace category Fast Company’s Brands That Matter.

Asana is driven by the belief that technology can be a force for good in the world. By building products that enable effortless collaboration and productivity, Asana helps humanity thrive by giving people clarity that empowers them to do the work that matters most and gives them confidence in that work. We’ve always been intentional about how we build our culture, and our values are its foundation. They’re not just what make us good humans; they’re what make us uniquely Asana. 


  • Laura Gao (she/her)

    Author & illustrator of MESSY ROOTS


  • Kasra Koushan (he/him)


    Accessibility Engineer



Thursday, May 5, 2022
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM UTC


Welcome & introductions
Fireside chat with Laura Gao, Author, Messy Roots
Laura Gao reads an excerpt of Messy Roots


  • Asanapac

  • Team Rainbow