Yili, pen name for Shau May Yung, was born in Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. At the age of ten, she immigrated to Hong Kong to be reunited with her parents. After she graduated from high school in 1967, she moved to Paris with her parents. The following year she went to England to attend nursing school. In 1973 she came to Boston and got married. She later studied English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. In 1977 she went to San Francisco State University to study creative writing. A year later she and her husband settled in Los Angeles. For many years she worked in a Chinese community center, helping immigrants settle in a new country. Her writing career started with stories of these immigrants. Themes reflected their struggle for survival and the clash between Eastern and Western cultures. Over several decades she has written many short stories and essays. Recently she has been writing blogs on the website of World Journal and other websites. She is a Lifetime Member for the Overseas Chinese Women Writers Association, and an Advisory Board Member of The Way Literary Association. She has published several volumes of fiction and essays in Hong Kong, Taiwan and China.