Rozanna Lilley grew up in South Perth, the youngest of five children. Her parents - Dorothy Hewett and Merv Lilley - were both left wing radicals and writers. They moved to Sydney in Lilley’s last year of primary school. After school, Lilley attended a drama school and was in two feature films: Journey Among Women (1977) and The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith (1978). Lilley has worked as a social anthropologist at universities in Australia and Hong Kong, returning home when her second child, Oscar, was born. Lilley then completed a second PhD in Early Childhood at Macquarie University. She has published creative non-fiction and poetry in national newspapers, literary journals and edited collections.