Anakana Schofield won the 2013 First Novel Award for her novel, Malarky (Biblioasis 2012).

Structured as a series of 20 episodes, Schofield's darkly comic first novel was more than a decade in the making. "I am a real passionate defender of people who live with dignity and desperation,"; she told Cheri Hanson of Quill & Quire in a June, 2012 profile. Her debut novel received advance attention due to its selection for the Barnes & Noble 'Discover Great New Writers' program. It was published by Oneworld in the UK and other Commonwealth countries in 2013, the same year in which it was shortlisted for the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize for the best work of fiction by a B.C. writer.

Schofield's passion is reflected in her primary narrator, an Irish mother who is coping with grief, lust, infidelity and madness while scrubbing the floors of her country farmhouse. Schofield told Q&Q she has been inspired by the social-realist writing of the 1960s and '70s, compelling her to write about "extraordinary ordinary" lives.

Before Anakana Schofield emigrated from Dublin to Vancouver in 1999, she wrote a one-woman play, worked as a documentary film researcher, held drama workshops for children and completed a feasibility study for a peace and reconciliation organization in Northern Ireland. In Vancouver, she gained a creative writing certificate from SFU and completed a residency at the Banff Centre.

Schofield has contributed to the Globe & Mail, London Review of Books Blog, Little Star, Geist, Vancouver Sun, The Recorder and CBC Radio.

Her second fiction novel, Martin John, published by Biblioasis in 2015, was shortlisted for the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize.


Malarky (Biblioasis, 2012) $19.95 978-1-92684-538-8
Martin John (Biblioasis 2015) $19.95 978-177196-034-2
Bina: a novel in warnings (Knopf Canada 2019) $29.95 978-0-7352-7321-4)

[BCBW 2019]