Daniel was born at a young age in Beijing, China and has spent most of his life surrounded by the country’s towering gray buildings and flocks of the national bird: cranes. (Yes, the construction kind. It’s a joke (…which means you can laugh).) In the city he currently lives in, he has no peers near his age, so he’s only able to see most of his friends a few times a year, and it often means a seven-hour train ride to do so. Though strong on every point of his ISTJ 5w6/w4 personality, in the times he gets a chance to be with his friends, a strange ENFP 7 has been known to emerge and surprise those that only know the reserved side of him. That said, he’s not sure what to expect next year in college, where he’ll be surrounded by peers all day every day, after five years of relative isolation, but he knows that the Father has a good plan for him, and he’s excited to watch it unfold.
In the fall, Daniel will be attending Taylor University, which is smack in the middle of a bunch of cornfields in small-town Indiana, yet has a history of attracting a large number of people with international experience. He’s currently undecided on his major, but keep an eye out, in case years from now you read about Daniel Robb: Prestigious Neurosurgeon in the papers. Reader beware: it won’t be this Daniel Robb. There’s no way this particular Daniel is going down that road. Rather, this Daniel is currently expecting to end up somewhere in media; perhaps film or design. But really, who knows? Daniel certainly doesn’t.
In the rare times he’s not working on schoolwork or any of the other responsibilities he maintains, Daniel enjoys reading, playing music on the keyboard or his bass, and talking with his friends spread across the world. He is an avid music consumer, and gives great thought and care to the playlists he curates on Spotify, which consist mostly of Christian indie, folk, alternative, and classic Christian rock artists.
His favorite movies include Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings, and his favorite books are The Chronicles of Narnia and The Hobbit. Given this list, it is perhaps unsurprising that Daniel loves stories, especially stories that take place in expansive and stimulating worlds. And again, given this fact, it is perhaps unsurprising that he has embarked on the long process of creating and writing about his own world in a fantasy-adventure novel titled For the King. But alas, his extensive workload and numerous travels have kept him for all too long from giving it the attention he so longs to pour out upon it. Its time will yet come, he must only be patient.
Daniel laments that he has only been a part of TPS for three years and has only really been involved in the amazing community that it fosters for two of those years, but he is extremely grateful to have had the opportunity at all. He was incredibly blessed to have been able to attend TPS’ Summer Camp last year, and he rejoices that he has yet again been granted this amazing opportunity this year. Huzzah! He’s looking forward to graduating with many of his friends, even though it will require him to leave his home (the building, as well as the country itself) a month ahead of the rest of his family.
He’s taken 7 TPS courses, has appreciated everything he’s learned in every one of them, and has been very thankful for all his amazing teachers. He’d like to specifically thank Mrs. Wood, for through her genuine passion for literature and beautifully quirky sense of humor, she’s shown him that even the most frustrating writing assignments are worthwhile, even the driest reading can be fascinating, hot water truly is a classtime staple, and that introducing laughter to nearly every lesson is perhaps the highest pinnacle a teacher can aspire to.
Daniel would also like to thank the entire staff at clay for being such terrific writers and a generally fun group. He’d like to thank his editor for being ever-gracious and encouraging, and he’d like to thank the amazing (and probably exhausted) Senior Editors for a great year of clay.
Finally, he’d like to thank TPS as a whole. You have been one of the most life-giving communities he’s ever been a part of. You’ve encouraged him at his lowest times. You’ve made him laugh when he needed it most, and you’ve spurred him to participate in events he never would have before. He’s made strong friendships, met brilliant people, and heard beautiful stories—and though life may take him away from TPS when he graduates, it can never take TPS away from him.
I love this quote because all too often, it’s me. I don’t want to deal with things—be they research papers or trolls—and I’d rather just forget it all and feel comfortable in my complacency. But that’s not what we’re called to do, and even though Bilbo never stops wishng for these things, he presses on, and in the end, he saves lives and helps kill a dragon—that’s what I want my story to look like.