By Alexandra Luppens-Dale
Margaret Atwood is the author of over forty books including novels, short story collections, essays, and, most recently, graphic novels. Her work has been adapted into film, stage, and in the forthcoming miniseries adaptations of Alias Grace and The Handmaid’s Tale. MGM recently acquired the rights to her 2015 novel, The Heart Goes Last. Her most well known works are Alias Grace, The Blind Assassin, The Handmaid’s Tale and the MaddAddam trilogy (Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, and MaddAddam). Her first book of poetry was published when she was twenty. She has taught at various universities and published a book based on her 2000 Empson Lectures on writing at the University of Cambridge, Negotiating with the Dead.
Ms. Atwood also holds the patent for the LongPen, a remote signing device she conceived of while on the book tour for Oryx and Crake. She is currently Chairman and Acting Chief Executive Officer of Syngrafii Inc., which uses the LongPen technology to provide services to business including investment banks, insurance companies and legal clients.
She became the first contributor to the Future Library Project art installation in 2014. Atwood’s novel, Scribbler Moon, will not be published until 2114. 1,000 trees were planted outside of Oslo to provide the paper for these books. Her fellow contributors, so far, are David Mitchell and Icelandic poet and novelist Sjón.
Her books have been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, the Giller Prize, and the Orange Prize. She received the Man Booker Prize for The Blind Assassin in 2000. This year, the National Book Critics Circle is honoring her with the Ivan Sandrof Award for Lifetime Achievement. This award is given annually and recognizes a person who has made a significant contribution to book culture. She is the first Canadian to receive this honor.
An ardent defender of free speech and of the environment, Ms. Atwood is currently a vice president for PEN International. She and her partner, Graeme Gibson, are the Joint Honorary Presidents of the Rare Bird Society within BirdLife International.
Margaret Atwood’s most recent books are the first two volumes of the graphic novel series Angel Catbird, in which a scientist accidentally merges his DNA with that of a cat and an owl and Hag-Seed, a retelling of The Tempest for the Hogarth Shakespeare series. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto and her Master’s from Radcliffe College. She currently lives in Toronto.
Alexandra Luppens-Dale is a second year MFA candidate concentrating in nonfiction at The New School. She holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and is currently working on a memoir. By day, she works in corporate communications. She is always tired. She can be found @firstofautumn on Twitter and Instagram