David Adams Richards - Biography

David Adams Richards was born in 1950 and grew up in in Newcastle, New Brunswick, on the shores of the Miramichi River. As an undergraduate, strongly influenced by nineteenth-century novelists like Chekhov, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Hardy, and Emily Bronte, Richards started to participate in readings at the Ice House, a Fredericton poetry workshop. There he was encouraged by Alden Nowlan, Bill Bauer and others to keep writing. In 1973, at the age of 23, he published his first novel, The Coming of Winter (1974), and has followed it up with ten more, including the Governor-General’s-Award-winning Nights Below Station Street (1988), the Giller Prize winner Mercy Among the Children (2000), The Bay of Love and Sorrows (1998), plus a short story collection and various non-fictional works, one of which, Lines on the Water (1998), also won a Governor-General’s Award. In the 1980s, Richards moved from the Miramichi to Fredericton, where he was writer-in-residence at UNB, and then to Saint John. From  the early 1990s on, he lived for many years in Toronto, before returning to the Maritimes.