Lijia Zhang was born in 1964 and raised on the banks of Yangtze River near Nanjing. At 16, she was pulled out of school and began her decade-long job at a factory.
At 26, Lijia travelled to England to study journalism, after which she worked as a freelance journalist. Her articles have been published in The Independent, The Observer, The Guardian and Newsweek.
In 2004, Lijia received a MA in Creative and Life Writing from Goldsmiths, University of London. Her first novel Lotus, was published in 2009. Lijia lives in Beijing with her two daughters.