Festival of Libraries Writer in Residence 2023: Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir

28 April 2023 - News

We are delighted to be welcoming Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir as the first International Writer in Residence for the 2023 Festival of Libraries in partnership with Manchester Literature Festival.

The Icelandic writer will be here from 3–8 June 2023 and will be hosted by the John Rylands Research Institute and Library on Deansgate. As part of her visit, Auður Ava will enjoy a guided tour of the historic Library and its archives, immerse herself in the city’s rich literary community and create a new piece of work inspired by her time in the city. She will return to Manchester in October 2023 to share her new work and her experience of writing in Manchester and Reykjavik, a UNESCO City of Literature since 2011, as part of Manchester Literature Festival.


Ólafsdóttir’s specialty is the small journeys we take to save ourselves and the ones we care for. She is the heart’s finest map-maker.” Sjón


Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir is a prize-winning novelist, playwright and poet. She also writes lyrics for the Icelandic performance pop band Milkywhale. Her novels Animal LifeHotel SilenceMiss Iceland and Butterflies in November are published by Pushkin Press and have been translated into over 25 languages. Hotel Silence won the Nordic Council Literature Prize, the Icelandic Literary Prize, and was chosen Best Icelandic Novel in 2016 by booksellers in Iceland. Whilst each of Auður Ava’s novels feature different characters and themes, her writing is always beautifully crafted and features fine observations on nature, life, death, friendship and the human spirit. Auður Ava lives in Reykjavik City of Literature.