December 19, 1955 |
Battersea, South London, England
|Part of a series of articles on the
Virginia Tech massacre
Perpetrator: Seung-Hui Cho
G. V. Loganathan
She was born in Battersea, South London, England, to Namba Roy, a Jamaican writer and artist, and Yvonne Roy, an English actor and teacher. She grew up in England and received her B.A. in English from King's College London before moving to the U.S., where she currently resides. She completed her M.F.A. in creative writing at the University of Arkansas.
In 1988, she published her first collection of poetry, Wailing the Dead to Sleep. Celebrated American poet Nikki Giovanni wrote the introduction. In 1995, her second poetry collection, The Hummingbirds, was selected by poet Lucille Clifton as the winner of the Eighth Mountain Poetry Prize. In her first novel, Lady Moses (1998), the protagonist is a woman whose father is a West African writer and whose mother is an English actress. HarperCollins published the book. Hotel Alleluia was her second novel, also published by HarperCollins, in 2000.
Currently, she is the Director of Creative Writing at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia, and was named Alumni Distinguished Professor of English. She is also the Vice President of the Association of Writers & Writing Programs.
Virginia Tech massacre
Roy received some attention in April 2007 when, after the Virginia Tech massacre, it was revealed that two years earlier she recognized spree shooter Seung-Hui Cho's behavior and writings. She warned campus authorities about him at that time, but as Cho had not made any specific threats, the authorities could not take any action or force Cho to get psychiatric help.
Roy subsequently wrote a book about the tragedy and the issues it raised entitled No Right to Remain Silent: The Tragedy at Virginia Tech. She was interviewed by Katie Couric in an interview aired on April 12, 2009 for CBS News to mark the second anniversary of the massacre. Roy stated that Cho had sought attention from a specific mental health specialist on campus that she had recommended to him but that Cho received no assistance.
- Wailing the Dead to Sleep (1988)
- The Hummingbirds (1995)
- Lady Moses (1998)
- The Hotel Alleluia (2000)
- No Right to Remain Silent: The Tragedy at Virginia Tech (2009)
- Jake Tapper and Avery Miller (April 17, 2007). "Teacher Warned Authorities About Va. Tech Shooter". ABC News.
- Interview with Katie Couric (April 12, 2009). "Failure to Act". CBS News.
- Funderburg, Lise (March 1998). "Caucasia. - book reviews (Lady Moses review)". [[Essence (magazine)<Essence]].[dead link]
- Greer, Bonnie (March 22, 1998). "No Promised Land (Lady Moses review)". The Washington Post. (free article preview)
- Young, Jeffrey R. (June 12, 1998). "An Artist Unexpectedly Finds Herself Transformed Into a Technology Advocate (cached)". Chronicle of Higher Education.
- Frucht, Abby (March 15, 1998). "Continental Divide (Lady Moses review)(cached)". The New York Times.
- Neblett, Shaun (June 2000). "The Hotel Alleluia. - book review". Black Issues Book Review.
- "Even after Newtown, Americans will resist Obama's call to tighten gun laws," Lucinda Roy, The Guardian, 16 December 2012