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Naomi K. Lewis

Naomi K. Lewis (born 1976, London, England) is a Canadian fiction and nonfiction writer who resides in Calgary, Alberta. She was a finalist[1] for the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for non-fiction.

Life and career

Lewis was born in London, and grew up near Washington, D.C. and in Ottawa. Her sister and brother-in-law are the artists Chloe Lewis and Andrew Taggart,[2] and her great uncle was the poet and artist Izrael Lejzerowicz [pl]. Lewis lived in Toronto, Fredericton and Edmonton, and completed degrees in philosophy and English literature, before settling in Calgary. She served as writer-in-residence both at the Calgary Public Library in 2011, and at the University of New Brunswick in 2015.[3] Lewis was an associate editor of Alberta Views magazine from 2012 to 2015.[4]


Lewis's first novel, Cricket in a Fist, was published by Goose Lane Editions in 2008. Lewis's story, "The Guiding Light" won the 2007 Fiddlehead fiction contest and appeared in McClelland and Stewart's 2008 Journey Prize Anthology.[5][6] Lewis' collection of short stories I Know Who You Remind Me Of won the 2012 Colophon Prize, from Great Plains Publishing.[7] Lewis's 2011 Alberta Views article "The Urge to Purge",[8] about detox diets, was shortlisted for a 2011 Canadian National Magazine Award, as was her 2014 article "A Bridge Too Far: The Story of My Big Jewish Nose."[9] With Calgary writer Rona Altrows, she edited an anthology of essays and poetry about shyness entitled Shy, published by the University of Alberta Press in 2013.[10]

Lewis also co-wrote In Case of Fire, a 2010 memoir about Edmonton burn survivor and workplace safety advocate Spencer Beach.

More recently, Lewis's 2019 memoir Tiny Lights for Travellers won Alberta's Wilfrid Eggleston Award for Nonfiction,[11] the Vine Award for Canadian Jewish Literature (nonfiction), [12] and the Pinsky Givon Family Prize for Nonfiction, a Western Canada Jewish Book Award.[13] It was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award for Non-Fiction and the W.O. Mitchell City of Calgary Book Award.[14]


  1. ^ CBC Books. "The finalists for the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for nonfiction". CBC. Retrieved November 3, 2020.
  2. ^ "Chloe Lewis named as Mary Macdonald's replacement at Eastern Edge Gallery". 2015-06-04. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  3. ^ Rivard, Philip. "Naomi K. Lewis 2011 Writer in Residence". Calgary Public Library. Archived from the original on 27 December 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  4. ^ Alberta Views. "Contact Page". Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  5. ^ Journey Prize Stories. "List". McLelland & Stewart. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  6. ^ "List of Backissues". The Fiddlehead. Archived from the original on 13 September 2010. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  7. ^ Staff (2012-01-28). "Jan 2012: Calgary writer wins prize from Winnipeg's Great Plains". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 2021-03-24.
  8. ^ "The Urge to Purge". November 2011. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  9. ^ "Swerve nominated for two national magazine awards". 2015-05-04. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  10. ^ When Words Collide Festival. "When Words Collide Speakers". Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  11. ^ "Alberta Literary Awards". Calgary Arts Development. Retrieved November 3, 2020.
  12. ^ "The 2020 Vine Awards ShortlistedNon-Fiction Writers Panel". Kultura Collective. Retrieved November 3, 2020.
  13. ^ "WCJ Book Awards". Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver. Retrieved November 3, 2020.
  14. ^ "Finalists for The City of Calgary W.O. Mitchell Book Prize Announced". Writers Guild of Alberta. Retrieved November 3, 2020.

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Naomi K. Lewis
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