About this submission

My family and many other immigrant families faced this story during the pandemic—my late grandfather’s death in China (when we couldn’t fly back) led to my father nursing a bloody nose. In this short musical dramedy, I hope to find connection through ancestral history, the feeling of entrapment each character (including the ghosts) face, and hope through breath and sound. While we cannot reach some of our loved ones any more, perhaps, when wading through these treacherous and painful pasts, we can one day stumble upon the present’s gifts to us in music.

Present stage of this work: Nearly final version

Vivian (Xiao Wen) Li is a queer and neurodivergent first-generation Chinese-Canadian immigrant writer, director, musician, and interdisciplinary artist. A MFA candidate at the UBC School of Creative Writing, she is the author of Someday I Promise, I’ll Love You (845 Press). The Garden, Echoes (a video poem with premieres including the 23rd Whistler Film Festival) is her second short film, with her previous work premiering at the 26th Toronto Reel Asian Film Festival and Minikino Film Week 9. Her creative works are forthcoming or published in The New Quarterly, QWERTY, The Massachusetts Review, The Fiddlehead, and CV2, among others. She was a Finalist for the Peter Hinchcliffe Award, a Finalist for the Kenyon Review Short Nonfiction Contest, and Longlisted for Commonwealth Writers Short Story Prize. She is a June Dodge Poetry Fellowship Recipient, and has since co-directed a short documentary that premiered at the Vancouver Queer Film Festival 2023. She is also a 2024 ScreenCraft TV Pilot Script Competition Semifinalist. She is working on her feature script, finishing her thesis novel, and can be reached @vivianlicreates. She is looking to collaborate with Canadian producers and cinematographers. more...

Join the Discussion