Being Asian American, my parents told me I had three career choices: Doctor, Physician, MD. That's it. Any other choice, they threatened to deport me. "If we had known you wanted be a starving artist, we would have left you in China." So before writing professionally, I traded bonds on Wall Street and served as deputy chief of staff to a New York Mayor. When the Mayor lost his job, I lost mine so I began to write to chase the unemployment blues away. I wrote like my life depended on it. No one believed in me. I felt vindicated when my play JUNK BONDS won an award from the Kennedy Center and Best New Play from the Katherine and Lee Chilcote Foundation, earning me a two-page profile in the New York Times. BIRD'S NEST SOUP was performed at the Mark Taper Forum Taper Too. TWO ARTISTS TRYING TO PAY THEIR BILL recently won an international comedy prize and inclusion in an anthology Best Ten Minute Plays 2020, published by Applause Books. The short comedy will soon be released as a podcast. My work is often dedicated to social justice and activism. DOWN THERE is a hilarious biting monologue that underscores how sexist language can be and how language can inform our laws and attitudes about our bodies. The success of DOWN THERE led to demand for more material so I created and performed two one-woman shows, CHINESE GIRLS DON'T SWEAR and IT AIN'T EASY BEING CHINESEY. FILL OR KILL, a financial thriller screenplay, focuses on what happens to a woman when she fails to fulfill the role men hired her to play. YOUNG AMERICANS is a feature comedy where Far East meets MidWest. Look What She Did! just named me Outstanding Female Artist in L.A., and a short documentary is forthcoming this spring.
My humble origins often remind me how far I've traveled, how difficult it is survive as an artist and how writing is fighting. When I was a girl, there were no roles for me and when I auditioned, the director often chewed me out. "There are no Asians in Dogpatch!" That's why it was important to create roles for young Asian Americans and why I wrote PRETTY FOR AN ASIAN GIRL, MY SUPERPOWER. It gives me great joy when a teen contacts me to say s/he used my monologue to land a role or win a competition. I was also commissioned to write plays for Orthodox Jewish girls and monologues that shed some light on David Bowie's Berlin years. Against all odds, I sold a half-hour TV comedy pilot to ABC and won a TV new writers award from CAPE and FOX. My screenplay FILL OR KILL won a coveted spot in a blind screenplay competition where Robin Swicord and Nina Sadowsky served as my mentors.
In addition to writing, I enjoy teaching and mentoring, privately or through escript.ws I have taught at wonderful institutions like USC, Ohio State as a James Thurber Fellow, Antioch-LA and at Marshall High School. Many of my students have been produced and published so they like to say I don't teach writing, I teach success. I also freelance as a healthcare journalist and won a Silver Award for best news coverage from ASHPE (American Society of Healthcare Publication Editors). My papers are archived at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA and at the University of MA at Amherst.
In sum, Lucy is a highly creative artist, whose writings challenge us to think deeply, even as we chuckle. Trying her hand at multiple genres and structures, as well as trying daring subject matter, Lucy brings a large and innovative talent to bear on all she does. She is always ready to try something new, even if the outcome is far from sure. It is these qualities, along with the sheer talent and ability she demonstrates, that confirm the wisdom of my original desire to collect her papers.
Sue Hodson, (Retired)Curator of Literary Manuscripts at the Huntington Library, San Marino, CA
You can buy some of my published works from Amazon, Original Works Publishing, YouthPLAYS and One-Act Play Depot. Many theaters demand unpublished and unproduced work which puts playwrights in a bind. We need you to support us, but we also need to produced. Please buy a few plays if you can, several publishers have gone out of business. Feel free to contact me if you're looking for something specific or wish to commission me. I can write just about anything.
Original Works Publishing
One-Act Play Depot
"Jeet Kune Do, So Can Yo!"
from CHINESE GIRLS DON'T SWEAR
"Put David Mamet, Amy Tan and Gordon Gecko in a centrifuge and you get something hilarious and clever like Lucy Wang's JUNK BONDS."
Put David Mamet, Amy Tan, and Gordon Gecko in a centrifuge and you get something like Lucy Wang's hilarious and clever JUNK BONDS.