Acclaimed Author Ian Williams Named Chair of 2023 Giller Prize Jury

Celebrating Canadian Fiction

The $100,000 prize is the biggest in Canadian literature.

Ian Williams

Williams is a writer and teacher from Brampton, Ont. He won the Giller Prize in 2019 for his novel Reproduction. His other books include the poetry collection Personals, the short fiction collection Not Anyone’s Anything and the essay collection Disorientation. He is currently a professor at the University of Toronto.

Joining Williams on the jury are Canadian writers Sharon Bala and Brian Thomas Isaac and American author Rebecca Makkai and Indian writer Neel Mukherjee.

Bala is a writer from Newfoundland. She is the author of the novel The Boat People, which won the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction and the Newfoundland & Labrador Book Award.

Isaac was born on the Okanagan Indian Reserve, in south central B.C. He’s worked in oil fields, as a bricklayer, and he had a short career riding bulls in local rodeos. As a lover of sports, he has coached minor hockey. All the Quiet Places is his first book.

Makkai is the author of the novels The Great Believers, The Hundred-Year House and The Borrower. The Great Believers was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the U.S. National Book Award.

Mukherjee is the author of the novels A Life Apart, The Lives of Others and Past Continuous. The Lives of Others was a finalist for the Booker Prize and the Costa Best Novel Award.

2023 will mark the 30th anniversary of the Giller Prize.

The Giller Prize described Ian Willaims as “incomparable” and understanding the “breadth and scope of genre-bending Canadian literature,” Williams is no stranger to the Giller Prize. He was also honoured with a spot on the Brampton Arts Walk of Fame in 2021.

Williams is the author of six books, spanning the genres of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. His latest work titled Disorientation: Being Black in the World was released in 2021 and considers the impact of racial encounters on ordinary people.