“When I write, I have a sort of secret kinship of readers in all countries who don't know each other but each of whom, when they read my book, feels at home in it. So I write for those readers. It's almost a sense of writing for a specific person, but it's a specific person who I don't know.” – Teju Cole
Born on this date in 1975 to Nigerian parents living in Michigan, where his father was studying for an advanced degree at Western Michigan, Cole grew up in Nigeria. He returned to America in 1993 to do his own education and begin his writing and artistic career (he’s also a noted, award-winning photographer).
Author of the novella, Every Day is for the Thief, and the novel, Open City, Cole also wrote an award winning essay collection, Known and Strange Things. Author Salmon Rushdie has called Cole “one of the most gifted writers of his generation.” Cole is a regular contributor to many leading U.S. publications including the New York Times, The New Yorker, Transition, and The New Inquiry. His monthly column for The New York Times Magazine, "On Photography," was a finalist for a National Magazine Award in 2016.
“The most common thing I find is very brilliant, acute, young people who want to become writers but they are not writing. You know, they really badly want to write a book but they are not writing it. The only advice I can give them is to just write it, get to the end of it. And, you know, if it's not good enough, write another one.”
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