Padma Viswanathan’s debut novel, The Toss of a Lemon, was published in eight countries, a bestseller in three, and a finalist for the Commonwealth (Regional) First Book Prize, the Amazon.ca First Novel Prize and the Pen Center USA Fiction Prize. Her second novel, The Ever After of Ashwin Rao, has been published in Canada, the USA, India and Australia. In Canada, it was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and was a national bestseller.
Padma’s short fiction appears in various journals. Most recently, her story “Better Protect America” was published online in Granta. Another story, “Transitory Cities,” won the 2006 Boston Review Short Story Contest. Her plays include House of Sacred Cows and Disco Does Not Suck. She has published personal essays, cultural journalism and reviews in such venues as Elle Canada, The National Post, The Rumpus and Guernica, several of which have been reprinted or anthologized, including a handwritten Letter-in-the-Mail for The Rumpus, which can be found in Best American Non-Required Reading 2012.
Padma has a longstanding interest in Brazil and her translation of the novel St. Bernardo, by the late, lauded Brazilian novelist Graciliano Ramos, is forthcoming in 2019 from The New York Review Books. Her primary current project is a nonfiction book provisionally titled Alias Delia George.
An Associate Professor in fiction-writing and literature in the Programs in Creative Writing and Translation at the University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville, Padma has served on juries for the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Neustadt Prize, and others.
Canadian by birth and temperament, she now lives on a hilltop in Arkansas with her husband (the poet and translator Geoffrey Brock), children, parents and an ever-shifting array of animals.