Aloha and Mabuhay! My name is Virginia "Virgie" Cantorna and I’m excited about this new chapter in my life as I realize my life-long dream of becoming a published author.
My new novel, Dark on the Inside, is slated to be released soon. It’s a compelling story about a family that suffers through the atrocities of World War II when the Japanese invade the Philippines. The seed for this story was planted when I was a girl and my mother told me that the women in her village were raped by the Japanese. She never spoke of it again and I didn’t dare ask if she was one of the war victims.
I’m a second-generation American born to Catholic, Filipino immigrants. My parents spoke the Ilocano dialect at home but were adamant that my sisters and I learn “good English” because “you may be treated badly if you speak with an accent."
As a licensed clinical psychologist on Maui, Hawaii, I offer culturally sensitive counseling and consultation in my private practice. I specialize in mood and anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress, panic attacks, depression, and bipolar. I have been invited to speak on topics that include racism and discrimination, culture, communication, relationship repair, psychopathology, and suicide prevention.
In my spare time, I am a community organizer and an activist for social justice, human rights, women’s rights, and equality. As a co-founder of the Maui Filipino Working Group, I strive to support Filipinos and teach others about Filipino culture.
My life’s delight is being a grandmother to a delightful three-year-old boy. My hobbies and interests include writing, watercolor painting, singing, and musical theater performance. I am proud to say that I have been part of high-quality productions on Maui such as Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, Evita, and Into the Woods. My husband of almost 40 years, my daughter, pugs, and tuxedo cat also add sparkle to my life.
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