Richard Wagamese is one of Canada’s foremost Native authors and storytellers. Working as a professional writer since 1979 he’s been a newspaper columnist and reporter, radio and television broadcaster and producer, documentary producer and the author of 13 titles from major Canadian publishers.
The 58 year-old Ojibway from the Wabaseemoong First Nation in Northwestern Ontario became the first Native Canadian to win a National Newspaper Award for Column Writing in 1991. As a published author he was won the George Ryga Award for Social Awareness in Literature for his 2011 memoir One Story, One Song, the Canadian Authors Association Award for Fiction for his third novel Dream Wheels in 2007 and the Alberta Writers Guild Best Novel Award for his debut novel, Keeper’n Me, in 1994.
He published an anthology of his newspaper columns, The Terrible Summer in 1996 with Warwick Press and his second novel, A Quality of Light, in 1997 from Doubleday. A critically acclaimed memoir entitled For Joshua: An Ojibway Father Teaches His Son arrived in October 2002, Dream Wheels in 2006, and the novel Ragged Company and his acclaimed and bestselling memoir One Native Life in 2008. Richard followed that noteworthy double with another pair of books in 2011 – his newest memoir One Story, One Song in February and his first collection of poetry Runaway Dreams in July.
New novels, The Next Sure Thing arrived in October 2011 and Indian Horse, arrived in February 2012. His latest literary novel, Medicine Walk, arrives in April 2014 from McClelland & Stewart.
He has twice won the Native American Press Association Award and the National Aboriginal Communications Society Award for his newspaper columns. Currently, his series One Native Life runs as a radio commentary and newspaper column in both Canada and the U.S. and was a weekly television commentary on CFJC-TV 7 in Kamloops, BC from 2007 to 2010.
He was honored with an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops in June 2010 and was the 2011 Harvey Stevenson Southam Guest Lecturer in Writing at the University of Victoria. In 2012 Richard was awarded the National Aboriginal Achievement Award in Media & Communications and in 2013 he was the recipient of the Canada Council on the Arts Molson Prize in the Arts and the inaugural Burt Award for First Nations, Inuit and Metis Literature.
He lives in Kamloops BC.