Cuban writer Chely Lima dies in Miami

Diario Libre reports that Chely Lima (Cuba, 1957), one of the main authors of the fantastic genre in Cuba in the 1970s and 1980s, and screenwriter for film and television, passed away on Saturday, January 21, 2023, in Miami.

Cuban writer, poet, and screenwriter for film and television Chely Lima, one of the main authors of the fantastic genre in Cuba in the 1970s and 1980s and who settled in Ecuador in the 1990s, died in Miami at 66 years old, the newspaper Diario de Cuba reported on Monday.

Born in Havana in 1957, Lima decided to change his gender identity a few years ago, which is why biographical notes refer to him as “an American queer writer of Cuban origin who was registered at his birth as Graciella Lima Álvarez.” [. . .]

Lima studied at the University of Havana, worked at the state Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC) and published his first collection of poems, “Tiempo nuestro”, in 1981.

The following year, he published his book of short stories “Monólogo con lluvia,” with which he won the 1980 Premio David [David Award].

In 1983 his first [series of] science fiction stories appeared, in collaboration with Alberto Serret, his partner, in the volume “Espacio abierto.”

Both wrote the scripts for popular Cuban television series such as “Del lado del corazón,” “Today is always still,” and “Shiralad or the return of the gods,” in addition to authoring “Violente,” the first Cuban rock opera.

Starting in 1990, they worked on television and radio in Ecuador, where Lima also taught courses and workshops at the Catholic University of Quito and Guayaquil, Andina Simón Bolívar, Ciespal, Central University of Quito, and other educational institutions.

In 1994 they began to collaborate with the Ecuavisa channel, for which they wrote the miniseries “El Chulla Romero y Flores” (1995), “7 lunas, 7 serpientes” (1996), and “Solo de guitarra” (1997).

From 1997 to 2003, Lima was part of the team of writers for the series “Pasado y confeso.”

In 1998 he won the Juan Rulfo Award in Children’s Literature for his story “El cerdito que amaba el ballet” [The little pig who loved ballet.]

After Serret’s death in 2000, Lima lived in Ecuador for three more years, then lived the same amount of time in Buenos Aires and, in 2008, settled in Miami. [. . .]

For full article in Spanish, see

Also see a tribute by fellow writer Daína Chaviano at and additional articles at,, and

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