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Nii Ayikwei Parkes

Author's Bio

Nii Ayikwei Parkes is a writer, editor, socio-cultural commentator and performance poet. A 2007 recipient of Ghana's national ACRAG award for poetry and literary advocacy, he has held visiting positions at the University of Southampton and California State University and is the author of four poetry chapbooks including eyes of a boy, lips of a man and the Michael Marks Award-shortlisted, ballast: a remix (2009), described in the Guardian as, “An astonishing, powerful remix of history and language”. Nii's event-specific commissions include a reading for the London Mayor’s vigil on July 14, 2005 (in response to the London bombings). Nii was a 2005 associate Writer-In-Residence on BBC Radio 3 and the featured face for poetry in the 2004 Time Out London Guide. Nii’s début novel Tail of the Blue Bird has been translated into Dutch and German and his latest book is The Makings of You, a book of poems.

Publications and Prizes

The Makings of You (Peepal Tree Press, 2010), Tail of the Blue Bird (Jonathan Cape, 2009)
2007 Arts Critics and Reviewers Association of Ghana Award for Poetry 2010 Commonwealth Writers Prize (Eurasia Region, Best First Book) (shortlist) Tail of the Blue Bird 2010 Michael Marks Poetry Award (shortlist) ballast: a remix

Personal Favorites

Favorite Authors:
Chinua Achebe, Saul Bellow, Walter Mosley, Pat Conroy, Ngugi Wa Thiongo, Mario Vargas Llosa, Toni Morrison, Margaret Atwood, Mariama Ba, Ernest Hemingway, Ayikwei Armah, James Baldwin, W.B. Yeats, Atukwei Okai, Li-Young Lee and Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Please note: All information in the Directory is provided by the listed writers or their representatives.
Listing last updated: February 10, 2011

More Information

Listed as:
Fiction Writer, Poet
Gives readings?
Travels for readings?
Prefers to work with:
Adults, At Risk Youth, Children, Teachers, Teenagers
Fluent in:
Born in:
Raised in:
Accra, London

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