Kai Cheng Thom is a writer, performer, cultural worker & speaker.
What does being part of the Sephora Canada We Belong to Something Beautiful campaign mean to you?
It’s very exciting! It’s a chance for people who are different, who stand out from the norm, to see themselves represented in all our vast and diverse, fierce beauty.
Beauty in your own words?
Beauty is courage – the courage it takes to live one’s truths and values, regardless of the consequences.
When or where do you feel the most confident?
I feel most confident when I am with the people I love!
Did you pick Montreal, or did Montreal pick you?
I live in Toronto now, but I was in Montreal for eight very formative years – it definitely chose me.
Something nobody knows about you (we won’t tell, we promise!)
But this is a public interview? Hahaha. Something no one knows about me is that I am not a fan of astrology! But sometimes I pretend to be in order to fit in at parties.
Most enlightening moment in your writing career?
When I realized that I have to write the truth, even if the truth is different from what is popular or marketable.
Favorite weekend / free time activity?
Honestly? Reading in a café with friends nearby, but not talking that much (I’m an introvert).
Which Superhero would you go for coffee/tea with and why?
Not a superhero, but rather a supervillain! Supervillains are way more interesting than superheroes. I’d choose Magneto (preferably the version played by Michael Fassbender) from the X-Men, because he is a revolutionary with a radical (if sometimes misguided) vision for changing the world.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I’d tell my younger self that it’s important to know yourself and care for yourself before trying to care for others. If you try to always take care of other people without taking care of yourself, you end up helping no one.
A book that changed you and why?
Francesca Lia Block’s Weetzie Bat and its sequels. Some of the content is a little dated now (particularly with cultural appropriation and stereotyping), but that book is the first piece of writing that really made me see the magic of my own life and believe that I could be a writer.
Photographer: Leeor Wild
In collaboration with Sephora Canada