Ayesha Harruna Attah

Ayesha Harruna Attah is a Ghanaian-born writer living in Senegal. She was educated at Mount Holyoke College, Columbia University, and New York University. She is the author of three novels for adults, including the widely acclaimed The 100 Wells of Salaga. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, New York Times Magazine, Elle Italia and the 2010 Caine Prize Writers’ Anthology.


What was your favorite book when you were a child?

Roald Dahl’s Matilda

What’s your favorite line from a book?

“Use’ ta be the fambly was fust. It ain’t so now. It’s anybody. Worse off we get, the more we got to do.” –John Steinbeck, Grapes of Wrath

Who are your top three favorite authors or illustrators?

Toni Morrison, Gabriel Garcia-Marquez, Italo Calvino

Why did you want to become an author or illustrator?

I loved reading books and disappearing into the worlds between their pages. I also wanted to write about where I was from and give readers similar experiences.

Do you have any advice for future authors or illustrators?

Take note of what keeps you up at night. The things that plague you can make for very interesting stories.