BIOGRAPHY

Akwaeke Emezi is an Igbo and Tamil writer and video artist based in liminal spaces. Her debut autobiographical novel, FRESHWATER, is forthcoming from Grove Atlantic in February 2018. An Indie Next selection, FRESHWATER has received starred reviews from Library Journal and Booklist, been included in The Guardian's 'Best Books of 2017', and recognized on 2018 best/most anticipated books lists by Esquire, ELLE, Cosmopolitan, Buzzfeed, Huffington Post, Bustle, OZY, Electric Lit, and Book Riot, among others. Emezi's short story 'Who Is Like God' won the 2017 Commonwealth Short Story Prize for Africa. She was photographed by Annie Leibovitz and profiled in the February 2018 issue of Vogue Magazine (Modern Families With A Cause).

Born in Umuahia and raised in Aba, Nigeria, Emezi holds two degrees, including an MPA from New York University. In 2017, she was awarded a Global Arts Fund grant for the video art in her project The Unblinding, and a Sozopol Fellowship for Creative Nonfiction. She received a 2015 Morland Writing Scholarship to write her second novel, and is a 2016 Kimbilio Fellow. Emezi's writing has been published by Granta Online, Vogue.com, and Commonwealth Writers, among others. Her memoir work was selected and edited by Chimamanda Adichie (‘Sometimes The Fire Is Not Fire’) and included in The Fader's 'Best Culture Writing of 2015' ('Who Will Claim You?'). Her experimental short UDUDEAGU won the Audience Award for Best Short Experimental at the 2014 BlackStar Film Festival and has screened in over thirteen countries.

She is currently making video art and working on her third novel. For her upcoming events, click here.

CV

"I stood at the border, stood at the edge and claimed it as central. Claimed it as central, and let the rest of the world move over to where I was." — Toni Morrison

Using Format