Eden Robinson

Son of a Trickster

Eden Robinson

Eden Robinson is an award-winning Canadian novelist and short story writer. Born in Kitamaat, British Columbia – “on the same day as Edgar Allan Poe and Dolly Parton: January 19. I am absolutely certain that this affects my writing in some way” – she is the child of children of a mixed marriage: her Haisla father met her Heiltsuk mother during a stop in Bella Bella in his fishing days, making Robinson a member of both the Haisla and Heiltsuk First Nations. She grew up with her older brother and younger sister (CBC-TV anchor Carla Robinson) near Kitamaat Village. Kitamaat, a Tsimshian word meaning “people of the falling snow,” (and not to be confused with nearby Kitimat town), is home to 700 members of the Haisla nation, with another 800 or so living off-reserve.

Robinson started writing stories as a teen, citing Stephen King as one of her biggest early literary influences. After studying creative writing at the University of Victoria (she flunked fiction, but blossomed in poetry) and earning her B.A., Robinson moved to Vancouver to look for work that would allow her to spend time writing. A late-night writer, she ended up taking “a lot of McJobs” – janitor, mail clerk, napkin ironer. After having a short story published in the University of British Columbia’s literary magazine, PRISM international, Robinson ended up getting a Masters from the university. She published her first book, a short-story collection called Traplines, to acclaim in 1996. While Eden was finishing work on the book, her paternal grandmother died; Eden feels the knowledge of real grief affected her writing.

With the publication her first full-length novel, Monkey Beach, in 2000, and subsequent writing, Eden Robinson has become one of Canada’s first female Native writers to gain international attention. She has used her celebrity to draw attention to Native rights issues including health care, lack of subsidized housing, overcrowding, and job access. SON OF A TRICKSTER is the first of a trilogy, and its sequel, TRICKSTER DRIFT, is slated for publication in 2018.


Traplines (1996) – Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize

The Penguin Anthology of Stories by Canadian Women (contributor, 1998)

Monkey Beach (2000) – Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, shortlisted for Scotiabank Giller Prize, shortlisted for Governer General’s Literary Award

So Long Been Dreaming: Postcolonial Science Fiction and Fantasy (contributor, 2004)

Blood Sports (2006)

Sasquatch at Home: Traditional Protocols & Modern Storytelling (2011)

Walking the Clouds: An Anthology of Indigenous Science Fiction (contributor, 2012)

Mothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond (contributor, 2013)

Son of a Trickster (2017) – shortlisted for Scotiabank Giller Prize

Trickster Drift (coming 2018)

Other – Writer’s Trust Engel/Findley Award for body of work, recipient of the Writers’ Trust Fellowship


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