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K-State Today

April 9, 2018

Writer Lily Hoang to read from her work on Friday, 3:30 p.m.

By Karin Westman

Lily Hoang

On Friday, April 13, writer Lily Hoang will read from her work at 3:30 p.m. in the Ekdahl Room in Regnier Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

Hoang is an experimental writer whose five literary books include "Parabola," winner of the 2008 Chiasmus Press Undoing the Novel Contest; "Changing," recipient of the 2009 PEN Open Books Award; and "A Bestiary," winner of the 2015 Cleveland State University Poetry Center's Nonfiction Book Prize.

Hoang has also edited several collections of fiction and criticism, including the anthology "The Force of What's Possible: Writers on Accessibility and the Avant-Garde" — with Joshua Maria Wilkinson — and "Thirty Under Thirty: An Innovative Anthology by Younger Writers."

Hoang serves as an associate professor of English and creative writing at San Diego State University, where she teaches classes in fiction, nonfiction, flash prose and fairy tales. In summer 2017, she was the Mellon Scholar in Residence at Rhodes University in South Africa.

"I love the wild experimentalism of Lily Hoang's work. You can do wordfinds and take quizzes in Parabola. You can use the hexagrams of 'Changing' to tell your fortune. She takes us to labyrinths inside the moon, to astronomy labs of the 18th century, and to kitchens and coffee shops of 20th century Texas. Whether she is exploring the Vietnamese refugee experience, sexual assault, addiction, parental illness, betrayals of friends and lovers, mythology, science, religion, fairy tales, IQ tests, family expectations, childhood pranks, or magical flying mermen, Hoang invites us to find responsible ways to engage with pain, and to discover new forms of play and pleasure," said Michele Janette, professor of English and Asian American literatures.

"I have taught Lily Hoang's works at K-State for over five years now, and every semester she blows our minds. My favorite student comment was that she is as important to literary history as Dante," Janette concluded.

More information about Hoang's work is available from her website.

Hoang's reading is sponsored by the English department, K-State Libraries and the Dow Center for Multicultural and Community Studies, the Office of Diversity, the Arts and Sciences Diversity Lecture Series, the Asian American Student Union and Staley School of Leadership Studies.

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