Aminatta Forna, OBE (born 1964) is a Scottish writer. Forna was born in Bellshill, Scotland, in 1964 to a Sierra Leonean father, Mohamed Forna, and a Scottish mother, Maureen Christison. When Forna was six months old the family travelled to Sierra Leone, where Mohamed Forna worked as a physician. She is the author of a memoir, The Devil that Danced on the Water, and three novels: Ancestor Stones (2006),The Memory of Love (2010) and The Hired Man (2013). Her novel The Memory of Love was awarded the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for “Best Book” in 2011, and was also shortlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction.
Forna is Professor of Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and was, until recently, Sterling Brown Distinguished Visiting Professor at Williams College in Massachusetts. She is currently Lannan Visiting Chair of Poetics at Georgetown University.
Forna was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to literature. Forna is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, sits on the advisory committee for the Royal Literary Fund and the Caine Prize for African Writing, has been a judge on several high-profile prize panels and continues to champion the work of up-and-coming diverse authors.