Yi Zhou was born in Xi’an in April 1972. His ancestral home is Wuxi， Jiangsu， and he now lives in Lanzhou， Gansu. The Chinese character “弋 （yi）” in his name is often easily mistaken for “戈 （ge）”. Its original meaning was a small wooden stake， and an arrow with a string attached that was used to shoot down birds. When used in the name “弋舟”， it takes on the meaning of “cruising”， like a boat floating in the water. Born on World Reading Day， Yi Zhou felt that writing may have been a summons from fate. He remembered that April 23rd was the day when Shakespeare and Cervantes passed away and the day Nabokov was born.
The novels of Yi Zhou contain a keen awareness of life. The characters in his works are solemn， lonely and hesitant， and they preserve the vitality of dreams and the spiritual lightning flashes of reality. He has established many orderly minds in his texts. Their stories are deep marks of the characters in this world. He uses his works to constantly remind us that the novel goes deep into the subconscious， depicting the necessity of the potential starting point for a character’s behavior； the novel is the sound made by an inner heart for a person’s hunger for life. Yi Zhou focuses on the presentation of life consciousness in his novels， and pays attention to the construction of the text. The narrative bridges the subconscious， behavior， and destiny， enabling the writing to achieve a deep integration of content and form. The critic Li Jingze commented that Yi Zhou cruises along like a bird. He has an incredible sense of direction and fluently walks through the darkness， light， despair and heroism of human life. He is among the very few who are never overwhelmed by heavy experiences. He is a writer who maintains the ability to imagine and fly. The writer Ge Fei said that Yi Zhou’s narratives are concise， tough and accurate， but also possess a precious sense of density. This was enough to rank him among China’s best short story writers.
Liu Xiaodong is Yi Zhou’s representative novella collection. All three novellas have a common male protagonist – Liu Xiaodong. As narrator of the three novellas， the identity of “Liu Xiaodong” is the same. The author describes it as follows： “The world is hazy and we are in the middle of it， but I would rather believe that those who are silent in the fog are helping others by helping themselves. I could see that one of them broke through the difficulties， and it came to me， and gradually， the figure appeared， step by step and revealed itself to me： he is a middle-aged man， intellectual， professor and painter. He was a self-diagnosed depression patient. He lost his voice， he was drunk and he was guilty. From today on， he begins his self-judgment with an almost heartbreaking jealousy. He is of our time – Liu Xiaodong.”
The short story collection Bingshen Story Collection andDingjiu Story Collection adopts the method of China’s chronology， which corresponds to the two years of 2016 and 2017 respectively. During these two years， Yi Zhou wrote many of these short stories that obtained many literary awards. He chose to name the two collections with the Chinese chronology method， reflecting his desire to blend the art of modern fiction with the ancient Chinese cultural tradition. At present， Yi Zhou is preparing to continue creating in this form – every year writing a collection of short stories and then naming them in the form of the traditional Chinese calendar year. At the same time， he also has plans to create nonfiction works and children’s literary works.