Deni Y. Béchard was born in British Columbia to Québécois and American parents and grew up in both Canada and the United States. He has also travelled in more than fifty countries. His recently-published memoirCures for Hunger describes growing up with his bank-robber father, and was both an IndieNext pick and Amazon Canada’s editor’s pick as one of the best memoirs/biographies of 2012. His first novel, Vandal Love, published in French and Arabic, won the 2007 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, both for the best first book in Canada and for the best overall first book in the British Commonwealth. It was also nominated for Le Prix du Grand Public Salon du Livre Montréal / La Presse, 2008, as well as the French version of Canada Reads (Le Combat des Livres, 2009).
He has been a writing fellow at MacDowell, Jentel, Ledig House, the Anderson Center, Vermont Studio Center and the Edward Albee Foundation. He has done freelance reporting from Northern Iraq as well as from Afghanistan, and his articles, blogs, stories, and translations have appeared in the LA Times, theNational Post, Le Devoir, Maisonneuve, the Harvard Review, and the Harvard Divinity Bulletin. He is currently finishingEmpty Hands, Open Arms, a book about conservation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.