Canada's second largest university, the University of Alberta, has nominated me as the 2014-15 Writer in Residence.
Valued at $50,000, the cash equivalent to the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the residency entitles me to write my own work (which includes finishing my War & Mir trilogy and creating several screenplays) and to help writers (from novices to professionals) of the greater Edmonton community to advance their writing.
To the best of my knowledge, I am the first Kenyan-Canadian to be made Writer in Residence at any university or college in the world, and one of the very few African-Canadians to become a Writer in Residence at any Canadian university.
I will be hosting four literary salons called AUTHORPALOOZAS, featuring at least sixteen Alberta writers from various disciplines (novels, poetry, song lyrics, comics, video games, plays, journalism, blogs, and more), who will come on stage to read from their work and/or be interviewed by me.
I will also be vlogging, posting original interviews with acclaimed novelists such as Robert J. Sawyer and comic legend/TV literary host Rick Green, on their approaches to writing.
I'm honoured to be the Writer in Residence at my alma mater, where I earned my BA English and ADBEd English, and look forward to helping build E-Town's literary community. We already have hundreds of outstanding writers in many disciplines--I'm hoping this year we'll channel our energies so that we all benefit.