Achy Obejas

Cuban-American writer Achy Obejas came with her family to the United States when she was six. She lived in Chicago for more than two decades, and the city figures prominently in her journalistic and fictional writing. Throughout her career, Obejas has worked for many different publications, including The Chicago Tribune, Windy City Times, The Advocate, Vanity Fair, Ms, and the Washington Post. Winner of a Pulitzer Prize, the Studs Terkel Prize, two Lambda Literary Awards, and on the long list for the 2018 PEN America Book Award, Obejas has delved into a wide range of topics in her writing, such as migration and immigration, cryptojudaism, queer life in the United States, and family relations. Her novels, short stories, journalism, and translations have made her one of the most accomplished writers in the United States today. From her debut collection We Came All the Way from Cuba So You Could Dress Like This? to her most recent work, The Tower of the Antilles, Obejas has made her mark as one of the best contemporary Latinx writers and her work is frequently taught in college courses. A gifted translator, Obejas produced Spanish versions of Junot Diaz’s acclaimed The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and This Is How You Lose Her as well as an English version of Todos se van by the prolific Cuban writer Wendy Guerra and The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo by F.G. Hagenbeck. In 2016, Mills College debuted its Low Residency MFA in Translation, which Obejas co-founded. She has been a visiting distinguished writer in residence there, as well as at many other colleges and universities.