Barbara, who is no stranger to the literary world, is a special example of there being no a singular mould from which all writers emerge and that literary DNA flows through us all. After forging a prestigious career as a high school geography teacher, she found her penchant for the written arts after being convinced to participate in a post-retirement writers’ group.

The fact that this unlikely decision was the genesis of a career that would see her go on to attain a Master’s of Fine Arts (MFA) in creative writing at age 70, as well as produce a body of award winning literature, speaks to the diverse nature of the river from which literary talent flows. Most importantly, however, her creative outputs never fail to address and investigate what it means to be Caribbean, in general, and Trinbagonian 🇹🇹, in particular, and her work beautifully and positively contributes to the ever-evolving narrative of Caribbean identity in the diaspora.

As such, the Brooklyn Caribbean Literary Festival is truly honored and ridiculously excited to host this distinguished daughter of the region as the festival’s headline author and we invite all to bask in her literary glow at this year’s inaugural


  • Won the inaugural Bocas Lit Fest Hollick-Arvon Prize (now known as the Emerging Caribbean Writers Prize), but she has

  • Won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize (Caribbean Region) in 2010 (for Something for Nothing) and in 2011 (for Head Not Made for Hat Alone)

  • Her debut collection of short stories, Sic Transit Wagon and Other Stories, was published in 2013, and in 2015 was awarded the 2014 Guyana Prize for Caribbean Literature for the best book of fiction.

  • She won the Bloody Scotland-Bocas Lit Fest Crime Writing Prize in 2014.