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Franck, Julia

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franck_julia
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Julia Franck, born in 1970 in East Berlin, relocated in 1978 with her family to West Germany and lived in Schleswig-Holstein until 1983. At the age of thirteen she moved to friends of the family in Berlin. She studied Law and later Ancient American, Recent German Literature and Philosophy. During her study she stayed for several months in the USA, in Mexico and Guatemala.  In 1995 Julia Franck won her first literary competition: the Open Mike in Berlin. In 1997 she published her debut novel Der neue Koch [The New Chef]. This was followed by more novels and the volume of stories Bauchlandung [Belly Landing]. In 2005 she lived in Rome for a year in the Villa Massimo. Julia Franck has received several awards. In 2007 she received the German Book Prize for her novel Die Mittagsfrau (title of the English translation: Lady Midday).

Julia Franck was born on February 20th 1970 with her twin sister in Berlin - Lichenberg as a daughter of a theatre actress Katharina Franck (Matschat) and television filmmaker Jürgen Sehmisch. In 1978 her mother moved from the east to the west and the family spent nine months in the Marienfelde refugee camp, and finally moved to Schleswig-Holstein. The family lived there in a village by the Kiel Canal and the sisters attended the Waldorf school in Redensburg, where some years later the youngest of five sisters was born.

1983 Franck moved back to Berlin where she lived for the next three years with friends of the family. She graduated from high school in 1991 and studied at the Free University Berlin, first Law, then Pre-Columbian Studies, New German Literature and Philosophy. During her high school and college time she worked e.g. seven long years as a cleaning lady, ten short years as a nanny, three not so bad years as a waitress, as auxiliary nurse, typist, research assistant at the Free University Berlin and as a free reporter for the radio and several newspapers. During her studies she lived for a couple of months in the USA, Mexico and Guatemala.

In 1995 Julia Franck won her first Literature Contest, the Open Mike in Berlin. In 1997 her debut novel "Der neue Koch"/ The New Cook was published. In 1999 followed "Liebediener"/ Loveservant and 2000 the volume of stories "Bauchlandung"/ Belly Landing which received a lot of attention. After she gave birth to her children in 2001 and 2003, her novel "Lagerfeuer"/ Compfire was published. In 2004 she worked on the first screenplay version for the planned film-screening of Lagerfeuer andin 2005  moved to Rome where she lived for a whole year with her children in the Villa Massimo. She was awarded the Marie Luise Kaschnitz Prize and the Roswitha Medal of the City of Gandersheim in 2005.

Since then she has  lived in Berlin with her children. In the summer semester she held a poetics lectureship in Wiesbaden. In September 2007 her new novel "Die Mittagsfrau"/ The Noonday Witch was published by the S. Fischer publishing house, for which she was awarded the German Book Prize 2007. 

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