Clark Blaise is the founder of the Creative Writing Program at Concordia University. He is married to the Indian American author Bharati Mukherjee. His short story collection, The Meagre Tarmac, was longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize.
Blaise spent his childhood moving around the United States, where his Canadian parents were living and working. He estimates that he attended school in at least 25 different cities before graduating from high school in Pittsburgh. A graduate of Denison University and the University of Iowa, Blaise moved to Montréal and acquired Canadian citizenship in 1966. He taught at Sir George Williams University (now Concordia), where he helped establish the Creative Writing Program. Since returning to the United States in 1980, Blaise has taught writing at a number of American universities, including New York’s Skidmore College, the University of Iowa, and the University of California, Berkeley.
Blaise published his first two collections of short fiction while living in Canada: A North American Education(1973), followed by Tribal Justice in 1974. Lunar Attractions (1979), a coming-of-age story set in rural Florida, won the Books in Canada First Novel Award. Blaise’s fiction publications include the novels Lusts (1983) and If I Were Me (1997). He also continues to write short stories, such as those collected in Pittsburgh Stories (2001), Montreal Stories (2003), and World Body (2006).
A number of Blaise’s works challenge the boundary between fiction and autobiography. Days and Nights in Calcutta (1977), co-written with his wife, is a joint account of their year in India. Blaise describes his collection Resident Alien (1986) as “an autobiography in tales and essay.” His work I Had a Father (1993) is subtitled A Post-Modern Autobiography. More information about Blaise can be found on his website, www.clarkblaise.com