Christina Nichol's debut novel Waiting for the Electricity is an irreverent picaresque set in the Republic of Georgia and is due to be published by Overlook Press in May 2014. Nichol's grew up in the Bay Area and received an MFA from the University of Florida. She has traveled widely, worked for non-profit film companies, and taught English in India, South Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, and of course, Georgia. Nichol's is currently residing in Kosovo
Waiting for the Electricity, the Georgian hero of which, Slims Achmed, embodies the spirit - and voice - of his nation even as he chafes against its provinciality and poverty. Indeed it is the tension between Slims's sense of identity as a Georgian and his longing to escape Georgia (he is constantly writing letters to Hillary Clinton) that ignites the novel, which takes him from his tiny rural village to San Francisco, a place that in its liberal pieties, proves to be as if not more provincial than the one he has fled. Eschewing autobiography, Nichol chooses to speak through the voice of a character who could not have a more different background from her own. This is an audacious feat, requiring her to cross linguistic, cultural, and gender lines, and she manages it with aplomb.
Christina Nichol was the recipient of a 2012 Rona Jaffe Writer's Award for fiction.
"Waiting for the Electricty is a wildly original and ambitious debut, a novel that tackles cultural clashes with satirical hilarity. I haven't read a first novel this promising since The Confederacy of Dunces." - Jill Ciment, author of Heroic Measures