25th Trillium Award

The Festival Series: Five Questions with Yejide Kilanko

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Yejide Kilanko

Another wonderful season of literary festivals is on the way and what better way to celebrate than with a series about festivals.

Open Book speaks with Yejide Kilanko, the author of Daughters Who Walk This Path. She attended the Ottawa Writers Festival last April and shares with us her thoughts on festivals.

Open Book:

Tell us about the first literary festival you attended.

Yejide Kilanko:

On April 11th, 2012, a day after Daughters Who Walk This Path was published, I was part of the 38th season of Authors at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto. I read with John Boyne and Heather Birrell and found both authors supportive, which was helpful given that it was my very first reading. The warm, intimate setting was definitely a plus too. One of the highlights of that event was discussing the novel with a lady who had read one of the advanced reader?s copies. It was a surreal moment.


What was your favourite moment at the Ottawa Writers Festival?


I really enjoyed the panel segment hosted by Adrian Harewood. It was very interesting to hear Lauren B. Davis and Linden MacIntyre talk about their work and to discuss the common thread that ran through all three novels.


Why do you think literary festivals are important?


Literary festivals are important because they promote the culture of reading and also provide opportunities for the sharing of ideas. I also think that because writing is often done in solitude, literary festivals provide authors with the opportunity to meet other writers and connect with their audience, the readers.


When it?s time to take the stage, what do you like most about being in the spotlight?


What I like most about being in the spotlight is the opportunity to talk about and draw necessary attention to the different social issues I?m passionate about. It?s a real privilege.


Will you be attending any other festivals this year?


I will be attending BookFest Windsor on October 27, 2012

Yejide Kilanko was born in Ibadan, Nigeria in 1975. A social worker in children's mental health, she currently lives in Chatham, Ontario with her family. Daughters Who Walk This Path (Penguin Canada) is her first novel. More information about the author is available on her website.

Visit the Open Book Archives for more Festival Series interviews.

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