The World of Larry Feign

By Dominique Wong, March 22, 2016

0 0

This is part of our series of interviews with some of the speakers at the 2016 Beijing Bookworm Literary Festival.

Larry Feign, cartoonist of the popular and award-winning comic strip The World of Lily Wong, owes a lot to a random beach-side caricaturist in Hawaii – his illustrious career, for one thing. Oh, and his wife. 


As Feign explains on Skype from Hong Kong, his home and inspiration-provider since 1985: “I’d never really taken the idea [of cartooning] seriously until I moved to Hawaii, where I was going to graduate school in applied linguistics. 


“I needed a room so I put a notice on the university bulletin board, where I drew a little cartoon picture of myself so it would get people's attention. I got a call from a guy saying, ‘I don’t have a room for you but I’ve got a job.’” 


Although Feign initially rejected the caricaturist's offer (several times), he finally relented when “the guy wouldn’t give up on me.” He dropped out of grad school to pursue his passion, which began with drawing caricatures on the beaches of Hawaii. 

As for his wife? “She was selling souvenirs just across from me.” 

Since that fated choice, Feign’s cartoons have appeared in Time, Newsweek, The Economist, Fortune, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Der Spiegel, among others. His animations have also appeared on television, on Cartoon Network and Disney, and he has published 15 books. 

But perhaps Feign’s greatest claim to fame is having had the “very first website ever in Hong Kong.” 

“It became the second cartoon ever on the Internet. The first one was Dilbert,” he explains. “Lily Wong was the second actual daily comic strip anywhere in the world on the Internet.” 

Not bad for a guy who neither planned to be a cartoonist nor to live in Hong Kong. He muses: “Sometimes I think how strange life is, that [it] led me here.” “My website became the second cartoon ever on the Internet” 


Above | A selection of comics from AIEEYAAA! Learn Chinese the Hard Way.

Above | A selection of comics – including two of Feign's personal favorites – from The World of Lily Wong comic strip.

AIEEYAAA! Learn Chinese the Hard Way, a satirical English-Chinese dictionary, is available on Amazon and through The Bookworm.


We have a pair of tickets to give away to Larry Feign's Beijing Bookworm Literary Festival event to give away. For your chance to win, simply follow us on WeChat (ID: Thats_Beijing) or scan the QR code below. We'll send out contest details in the coming days.

That's Beijing WeChat Account

Sat, Mar 26, 2pm, RMB200. The Opposite House, see event listing here (workshop). See more interviews with 2016 Beijing Bookworm Literary Festival authors here.

Illustration by Iris Wang

more news

Christmas 2016: Beijing Winter Holiday Market Guide

For those of us who haven't started our holiday shopping yet, there are a bunch of holiday markets and bazaars going on in December.

Pick of Six Beijing Art Exhibitions: December 2016

A look at what's happening at Beijing's art galleries.

That's Beijing – December 2016 Issue Out Now!

This month we bring you our annual Year in Review issue. In sum, 2016 sucked (thanks Trump). The best we can offer is an entertaining distraction.

What's On in Beijing: December 2016

From international bands to Great Wall snow festivals, we take a look at the best of December.

What's On in Beijing: November 2016

From presidential pub quizzes to a whole slew of great shows, we take a look at the best of November.

That's Beijing – November 2016 Issue Out Now!

For this month's cover story we visit nearby Baoding to examine the city's notoriously poor air quality and booming alternative energy sector.

Where to Celebrate Halloween 2016 in Beijing

From raging parties to epic drink specials, here's our ultimate guide on where to celebrate Halloween in the city.

What's On in Beijing: October 2016

From vintage fairs to awesome shows, we take a look at the best of October.

0 User Comments

In Case You Missed It…

We're on WeChat!

Scan our QR Code at right or follow us at ThatsBeijing for events, guides, giveaways and much more!

7 Days in Beijing With

Weekly updates to your email inbox every Wednesday


Download previous issues

Never miss an issue of That's Beijing!

Visit the archives