Will Ferguson was a well-known writer who made a name for himself with humorous stories about travel and Canadian identity. But it was his dark, dramatic novel 419 that won him the 2012 Scotiabank Giller Prize.
The story revolves around an email scam and a woman who sets out on a search for those she believes responsible for her father's death. When his name was called, Ferguson, dressed in a traditional kilt, commended the jury for "taking the books on their own merit, without preconceptions -- which is how a jury should act."
The humour that permeates so much of his work was evident in his acceptance speech. At the end, he reached into his sporran for a flask, and led the audience in a toast.
"Ladies and gentlemen: To the written word," Ferguson said, before taking a sip.
"And finally, to answer the question you're all wondering -- yes I have something on underneath!"
The day after his triumph, Ferguson sat down with CBC's Jian Ghomeshi to reflect on his journey as a writer and the excellent times had by all at the gala.