Lily Chang (she/they) is a queer Taiwanese-Canadian writer, editor, singer, and director/producer based in the traditional territory of Tiohtiá:ke/Mooniyang/Montréal. This land has long been a site of meeting, story-telling, learning, and exchange for many First Nations including the Kanien’kehá:ka of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, the Huron/Wendat, the Abenaki, and the Anishinaabeg, and Lily is thankful to be able to live, study, work, create, and cultivate connections and communities here.
Lily is a graduate of McGill University’s BA program in English literature and Concordia University’s MA program in English literature and creative writing. Passionate about community involvement, they have volunteered with the Québec Writers’ Federation, McGill University’s Rez Project (now known as Our Shared Spaces), the Threshold Singers of Washington DC, the Smithsonian Associates’ Studio Arts Program, and Concordia University’s Sexual Assault Resource Centre, for which she received the Concordia Leadership Initiative Volunteer Engagement Centre’s 2017 Volunteer Recognition Award. They have also been a member of the Maryland Filmmakers, Hawkeye Players Theatre Company, and Hawks' Nest Techies; the curator for Word and Colour; the Chair of Concordia University’s English Graduate Colloquium Committee; a Coordinating Committee Member of Concordia Write Nights; and the Vice President External of Chromatones a cappella choir.
Lily's writings have appeared in Room Magazine, Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop/Dark Helix Press’s Immersion: An Asian Anthology of Love, Fantasy, and Speculative Fiction, HerStry (for which she received a Pushcart Prize nomination), Dark Helix Ezine, Frog Hollow Press’s The City Series, Headlight Anthology, Word and Colour, and Voices Visible. She received a merit-based fellowship to a 2014 Summer Literary Seminars program and was a finalist for the 2018 CBC Nonfiction Prize and the Speculative Literature Foundation’s 2018 Diverse Writers Grant.
In 2021, with the support of a Canada Council for the Arts grant, Lily wrote their debut play, Leila Roils the Seas, a polyglot, seriocomic, magical realism family drama about the special bond and generational, socio-cultural clash between a Taiwanese-Canadian woman and her Taiwanese grandmother. The play utilizes intertextuality and cacophony to examine loss (of one’s family, language, culture, homeland) and how violence can be normalized and passed down through generations in loud and quiet forms. In June 2023, Lily directed and produced an abridged version of Leila Roils the Seas at the St-Ambroise Montreal Fringe Festival, garnering two Frankie Award nominations (Outstanding English Production, Most Promising English Text) and one win (Most Promising Emerging English Producer). The show was also featured on CBC’s All in a Weekend with Sonali Karnick (May 27, 2023), Radyo Kapwa on CKUT 90.3 FM (May 24, 2023), twice on Montreal Rampage, and twice on Cult MTL.
Lily's current projects include a memoir experimenting with creative forms, styles, voices, and tones to interpret the effects of systemic violence on an individual's experience of their body. This project is supported by the Access Copyright Foundation's Marian Hebb Research Grant and the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, Inc.'s Money for Women grant. Another project, funded by the Canada Council for the Arts' Research and Creation grant, is a speculative, new adult novel that plays with Greek mythologies, fragmentation, and multiperspectivity to explore the workings of trauma, the empowerment and support of survivors, and the restorative impact of writing.