Yasser ABDEL HAFEZ ياسر عبد الحافظ (novelist, journalist, editor; Egypt) is the author of three novels: [On the Occasion of Life] was longlisted for the 2008 Arabic Booker; The Book of Safety, the winner of the Banipal Translation Prize (English translation Robin Moger) appeared in 2017; the third, [Platitude], is forthcoming. With a long career in journalism, Abdel Hafez is the managing editor of the literary magazine Akhbar al-Adab. He lives in Cairo. His participation was made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
2022 Spring Residents
Khadija Abdalla BAJABER (fiction writer, editor: Kenya) has had writing published in Enkare Review, A Long House, Lolwe and Down River Road, among other publications. An associate editor for Sahifa Journal, she was, in 2018, the winner of the new Graywolf Press Africa Prize for her debut novel The House of Rust. Her participation was made possible by the Paul and Hualing Nieh Engle Fund.
TJ (Tarfa) BENSON (fiction writer, non-fiction writer, editor, visual artist; Nigeria) has had writing appear in Transition Magazine, Saraba, Jalada Africa, Catapult, Bakwa Magazine and elsewhere. His story collection We Won’t Fade into Darkness (2018) was shortlisted for the Saraba Manuscript Prize; his first novel, The Madhouse, appeared in 2021. A grant from the U. S Embassy in Abuja made possible his participation.
Abdelaziz ERRACHIDI عبد العزيز الراشدي (fiction and non-fiction; Morocco) is a professor of Arabic literature at Ibn Tofaïl University in Kenitra and the director of the publishing house AlKassaba. Among his numerous novels and story collections are [Body of clouds] (2018), [Kitchen of Love] (2013), [Foreigners at my Table] (2009) and [Childhood of a Frog] (2005). A recipient of many awards including the Al Sharjah Arabic Novel Prize, Egypt's Sakyat Essaw Prize and UAE’s Ibn Battuta Prize for his 2014 travel book [Sindbad of Sahara], he has had his works translated widely. He participates courtesy funding from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Luíza FAZIO (screenwriting; fiction; Brazil) is the author of the screenplay for Sintonia (Netflix), the most-watched Brazilian TV series of 2019. Other recent work was on Samantha! (Netflix) and Sentence (Amazon Prime) and on a feature-length adaptation of the LGBTQIA-themed children’s book A Princesa e a costureira [The Princess and the Seamstress], which won a script development grant from the Brazilian Ministry of Culture. Her 2010 story collection O Laboratório do escritor [The Writer’s Lab] received funding from the São Paulo State Department of Culture. She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Walid HAJAR RACHEDI (fiction writer, publisher, screenwriter; France) is the co-founder and managing editor of the on-line magazine Frictions; Épidémiques [Epidemics], a fiction podcast he co-produced, was shortlisted for the 2020 Paris Podcast Festival. His debut novel Qu’est-ce que j’irais faire au paradis [Whatever Would I Do in Paradise] appeared in early 2022. His participation was made possible by the U.S. Embassy in Paris.
Silvia HOSSEINI (non-fiction; Finland) is a Tampere-based teacher, literary critic, and media commentator, and the author of essay collections Pölyn ylistys [In Praise of Dust] (2018) and Tie, totuus ja kuolema [The Way, The Truth, and Death] (2021). Hosseini was awarded the Kalevi Jäntti Prize and has been nominated for both the Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize and the Toisinkoinen Literature Prize. She participates courtesy of an anonymous donor.
Angel IGOV Ангел Игов (novelist, translator, scholar; Bulgaria). teaches English literature and Translation at Sofia University. He is the author of three novels, among them Фини прахови частици [Particulate Matter] (2017), shortlisted for the Novel of the Year Award, Кротките [The Meek] (2015), whose German translation shared the 2020 HKW International Literary Prize, Кратка повест за срама (2011), appearing in the US as A Short Tale of Shame (2013), and two collections of short stories. Igov translates contemporary British and American prose and poetry. His participation was made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Sara JARAMILLO KLINKERT (journalist, novelist, screenwriter; Colombia) has worked for numerous newspapers and major media channels in Colombia. Her autobiographical novel Cómo maté a mi padre [How I killed my father] came out in 2019; a second novel, Donde cantan las ballenas [Where the whales sing], appeared in 2021. She has a MA from Escuela des escritores (Madrid) and lives in Medellín. Her participation was made possible by the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá.
IWP alum Billy Karanja KAHORA is the author of the non-fiction novella The True Story Of David Munyakei (2010) and the story collection The Cape Cod Bicycle War (2019). His stories have been shortlisted for the Caine Prize for Africa Writing; among his award-winning screenplays are those for Soul Boy and Nairobi Half Life. His work has appeared in Chimurenga, McSweeney’s, Granta Online, Internazionale, Vanity Fair, Kwani? , and elsewhere. Among his numerous organizational appointments, he has been the managing editor of Kwani Trust, a Nairobi-based literary network, and the curator of its festival. A founding partner of Saseni!, a creative writing teaching platform, he currently teaches Creative Writing at the University of Bristol (UK).
Shehan KARUNATILAKA (novelist, screenwriter; Sri Lanka) has authored the novels Chinaman: The Legend of Pradeep Mathew (2010) and Chats with the Dead (2020) as well as the children’s book Please Don’t Put That in Your Mouth (2019). The recipient of the 2008 Gratiaen Prize, the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize, and the 2012 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, he also writes on sport, music, and travel for major newspapers and magazines. His participation was made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Jidanun LUEANGPIANSAMUT จิดานันท์ เหลืองเพียรสมุท (fiction writer; Thailand) has published more than 20 novels, largely in the sci-fi and romance genres. The youngest-ever winner, in 2017, of the Southeast Asian Writers Award, she specializes in dystopian and LGBT themes, and YA literature. Her novel เฟื่องนคร [City of Stars] has been translated into English and Chinese, and will be the basis of a TV series. Her participation was made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Raghavendra MADHU (poet, activist; India) has authored three books of poetry: Make Me Some Love to Eat, Stick No Bills, and Being Non-essential, all published by Red River (New Delhi). The founder of Poetry Couture, a movement to create free spaces for poetry in many cities of India, he regularly curates events at American Center libraries in India and conducts performance poetry workshops for young adults. His poems have been widely published and translated. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Tariro NDORO (poet, fiction, nonfiction; Zimbabwe) is the author of the poetry collection Agringada: Like a Gringa, Like a Foreigner (2019), which won the inaugural NAMA Award for Outstanding Poetry Book from Zimbabwe's National Arts Council. A finalist in several other poetry competitions, she has had her work anthologized and translated. Ndoro, who has a BSc in Microbiology and an M.A. in Creative Writing, lives in Harare. Her participation in the 2022 Spring Residency is made possible by the U.S. State Department.
Felix K. NESI (fiction writer, activist; Indonesia) is the author of Orang-Orang Oetimu [People of Oetimu], which won the 2018 Jakarta Arts Council Novel Competition, and, in 2016, the story collection Usaha Membunuh Sepi [Effort to Kill the Quiet]. With the support of the Indonesian National Book Committee, he has researched Timorese slavery in the Netherlands. He is also the founder of a street bookstore, a library, and the book festival Kencan Buku Fesek, all in West Timor. His participation is made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Fahri ÖZ (translator, scholar, poet; Turkey) has translated into Turkish many British and American 19th and 20th c poets, and is currently bringing into Turkish Walt Whitman’s and Emily Dickinson’s collected works. He is the co-editor of a collection of “sudden fiction,” Hayat Kısa Proust Uzun [ Life is Short, Proust is Long] (2000), and the author of the poetry volume Meşrutiyet Çok Bulutlu On Beş Santigrat Yağmur Olasılığı Sıfır [Meşrutiyet Street: Heavily Overcast, 15 Degrees Celsius with Zero Chance of Rain] (2019). Until 2017, when he was dismissed for signing the Academics for Peace declaration, he taught at Ankara University. His participation is sponsored by the Institute for International Education, the University of Iowa, and private gifts.
Beaudelaine PIERRE, journalist, scholar, and novelist, writes about her native Haiti and her adopted Youwès. She is the author of You May Have the Suitcase Now (2021) and the co-editor of the trilingual anthology How to Write an Earthquake / Comment écrire et quoi écrire / Mou pou 12 Janvyé (2011). Her debut novel Testaman appeared in 2002, followed by La Nėgresse de Saint Domingue (2010) and L'enfant qui voulait devenir président (2012). A 2007 alum of the International Writing Program, she is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Saint Catherine University in Saint-Paul Minnesota.
Pamela RAHN SÁNCHEZ (poet, visual artist; Venezuela), a graduate of the National Film School in Caracas, has published four poetry collections: La luz entre las cosas [The light between things] (2020), Breves poemas para entender la ausencia [Brief poems to understand absence], the winner of the 2019 Gloria Fuertes International Young Poetry Award, Flores muertas en jarrones sin agua [Flowers in vases without water] (2017) and El peligro de encender la luz [The danger of turning on the light](2016). Her poetry, sometimes accompanied by her collages, also appears in anthologies and in print and on-line journals. She participates courtesy of the U.S. Embassy in Caracas.
ko ko thett is the co-editor of Picking Off New Shoots Will Not Stop the Spring, a new collection of “witness essays and poems from Burma/Myanmar 1988-2021.”