NoViolet Bulawayo

Author NoViolet Bulawayo was born December 10, 1981 in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. NoViolet Bulawayo is a pen name. Violet was the name her mother who died before she was born. NoViolet talks more about her name and names in general at this link. NoViolet spent most of her life in Zimbabwe and moved to the U.S. for college.



She attended Stanford University as a Stegner Fellow and currently teaches fiction at the university. NoViolet also attended Cornell University where she earned her MFA as a Truman Capote Fellowship recipient.

NoViolet currently lives in the US by Stanford University and is the author of We Need New Names and several short stories such as “Hitting Budapest which won the Caine Prize for African Literature in 2011.

We Need New Names:

Photographer: Russell Roberts Source: Career Junction

NoViolet’s best selling book, We Need New Names, was released in May 2013. The book covers the troubles of Zimbabwe in the 2000’s. The story is told from the eyes of ten-year old Darling who moves from Zimbabwe to the U.S.. This book gave NoViolet a way of reconnecting with her hometown Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

NoViolet Bulawayo discussing her book We Need New Names:

We Need New Names Awards:

  • shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Guardian First Book Award
  • LA Times Book Prize Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction
  • Pen/Hemingway Award
  • Etisalat Prize for Literature
  • Barnes and Noble Discover Award (second place)
Source: Pen/ Hemingway Awards Ceremony

More sources (interviews) regarding NoViolet Bulawayo:

Reading ‘We Need New Names’

‘We Need New Names’ Interview

Works Cited:

NoViolet Homepage 

Pen/Hemingway Award

Featured Image: Smeeta Mahanti Source:  New York Times

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