Clark Blaise is a Canadian-American author of twenty books, and co-editor of seven more; ten of them story collections, three of them novels, and seven non-fiction works ranging through literary criticism, travel, memoir, biography,investigative journalism and most recently (2016), The Cruelest Gift, a medical-memoir of his family's struggle with inherited diseases. He served as Director of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa, and founded the graduate writing program at Concordia University in Montreal, now Canada's largest. He has taught at McGill and Concordia, Columbia, Skidmore, Emory, Cal-Berkeley, Iowa, NYU and Sarah Lawrence. He holds three honorary degrees (Denison University, his alma mater, McGill and Concordia), and has lectured in thirty countries. He is an officer in the Order of Canada, and holds a lifetime achievement award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.