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Famed young adult author to read at APSU on July 10


            CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – The author Nnedi Okorafor doesn’t write stories that feel tired or predictable. Her books, which mash up literary genres from African literature to science fiction and fantasy, stand out for their originality and their abilities to take young readers on unexpected journeys.

            “There’s more vivid imagination in a page of Nnedi Okorafor’s work than in whole volumes of ordinary fantasy epics,” the celebrated author Ursula K. Le Guin wrote in a recent review.

            At 7 p.m. on July 10, Okorafor will give a free reading and discuss the craft of writing at Austin Peay State University’s Morgan University Center. The event, which is free and open to the public, is part of the Tennessee Young Writers’ Workshop, which brings seventh- through 12th-grade students to the APSU campus for a week each summer to explore their interest in writing. Humanities Tennessee and the APSU Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts co-host the workshop every summer.

            The July 10 reading will provide the students, and interested Clarksville residents, with the opportunity to hear one of the leading young adult writers working in the country today. Okorafor’s recent book, “Akata Witch,” has received numerous accolades, including the Young Adult Library Services Association’s Best Book of the Year, an 2011 Best Book of the Year Award and a nomination for an Andre Norton Award for Best Young Adult Science Fiction.

            Each of the young writers attending this year’s workshop will receive a free copy of that book, thanks to the support of the Nashville Predators Foundation.

             Okorafor is also the recipient of the Wole Soyinka Prize for African Literature, the CBS Parallax Award and the Macmillan Writer’s Prize for Africa. She holds a Ph.D. in English and currently is professor of creative writing at Chicago State University.

            For more information on the workshop, visit the website For more information on the reading, contact Susan Wallace with the APSU Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts at 221-7031 or