Elnathan John is a Nigerian-born novelist, lawyer, and satirist who gained acclaim for his award-winning debut novel Born on a Tuesday (2016). He is a Betty Trask Award winner and a Civitella Ranieri Fellow, recognized for his impactful contributions to African literature.
Elnathan John was born in 1982 in Kaduna, Nigeria. He holds degrees from Ahmadu Bello University and the Nigerian Law School.
Elnathan John is a lawyer and communications consultant with over ten years of experience in diverse fields, including satire, literary fiction, religious studies, and African indigenous religions. His critical research focuses on youth, masculinities, media, and public discourse.
Bayan Layi, a short story shortlisted for the Caine Prize in 2013, started his literary journey. The momentum continued with Flying, earning him another Caine Prize nomination in 2015.
Elnathan's debut novel, Born on a Tuesday, was shortlisted for the 2016 NLNG Nigeria Prize for Literature and later won the Betty Trask Award.
Elnathan ventured into satire with Be(com)ing Nigerian, A Guide, a collection of satirical pieces released in 2019 by Cassava Republic Press.
In On Ajayi Crowther Street (2019), a graphic novel, Elnathan extends the cultural reach of his narratives by adding a visual dimension. Translated into German in 2022 as Lagos: Leben in Suburbia by Avant Verlag.
Expanding his repertoire, Elnathan delved into the graphic novel
Elnathan John's influence extends beyond his creative endeavours. A Civitella Ranieri Fellow, he contributes a weekly satirical column to the Sunday Trust Newspaper and is an authoritative voice on Nigerian literature, media, and politics.
In 2019, Elnathan served on the jury for the Man Booker International Prize (now the Booker International Prize).
Currently residing in Berlin, Elnathan John is working on his sixth and seventh books.
Photo credit: IG @elnathan.john