The Short of It
Sarah Colwill-Brown is the Writer-in-Residence at Wellspring House; editor at GrubWrites, GrubStreet’s online publication; and fiction editor at Pangyrus magazine. After graduating from the 2014-15 Novel Incubator, Sarah found representation for her first novel, The Delusionist, with Robert Guinsler of Sterling Lord Literistic, which is currently on submission to publishing houses. She is the recipient of a work-study scholarship for the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Seaton Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing at Kansas State University, and the Henry Blackwell Essay Prize. Sarah is especially proud to call herself a founding member of the Back Porch Collective, a Boston-based group of writers. With members connected to Cuba, India, Albania, Atlanta, Bosnia, Miami, Jamaica, and the UK, they bonded over a common passion for global narratives and literature’s potential to create empathy and understanding across all geographical, political, and cultural borders. Hailing from Yorkshire, in the north of England, Sarah is determined to introduce the word “sozzard” to the American vernacular.
The Long of It
Born and raised in Yorkshire, England, Sarah defected to the States in the winter of 2011. She was educated at Leeds University, where she received her BA hons in English Language and Literature (International), with stints at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and the Kansas State University’s Graduate Creative Writing Program, where she was awarded the Seaton Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing. Most recently, Sarah completed an MA in English Literature at Boston College, where she was awarded a full scholarship and the Henry Blackwell Essay Prize.
Sarah has worked behind a bar, in a restaurant kitchen, as a door-to-door makeup saleswoman, as a call-centre operative, in a newsroom, as a fundraiser, as a writing instructor, and in a record store, on both sides of the Atlantic. She has played the saxophone at a German jazz festival, the flute at a French vineyard, and the bass guitar in every rock-n-roll venue on South Yorkshire’s toilet circuit.
In Boston, Sarah organized arts festivals as Events Manager for the Boston College Arts Council, and spent several blissful months as a bookseller for the wonderful Newtonville Books before finding a professional home at GrubStreet, the nation’s leading creative writing center, as their Marketing and Community Engagement Manager.
Sarah kept Grub’s large community of writers, readers, and industry professionals connected via e-communications and social media channels; developed and executed digital campaigns for the national Muse & the Marketplace conference, GrubStreet’s advanced programs, an ongoing series of free community-based workshops, and 500+ creative writing courses annually. She co-founded the Boston Writers of Color group and was a founding member of GrubStreet’s access team, dedicated to furthering cultural and economic access to GrubStreet programs. She also managed the marketing and logistics of regular GrubStreet open houses and writers of color events, coordinated GrubStreet presence at AWP and the Boston Book Festival, and directed social media, video/photography, and attendee communications at the Muse conference and GrubStreet’s annual gala. Sarah was editor of GrubWrites, GrubStreet’s five times weekly online publication, oversaw the creation and maintenance of website content to uphold brand standards and ensure quality and consistency of copy, and supervised the production of marketing collateral including image, video, and print materials. In her three years at GrubStreet, Sarah has made significant contributions to the organization’s new mission statement, re-branding process, and institutional marketing strategy.
After accepting a fellowship at Wellspring House, a retreat for writers and artists on the edge of the Berkshires, Sarah is Wellspring’s Writer-in-Residence while continuing as editor of GrubWrites. At Wellspring, she manages social media and marketing strategy for the retreat and works away at her second novel, set in her native Yorkshire and following the struggle of four generations of women as they fight against a misogynistic land grab designed to rob them of their matrilineal birthright.
Her creative work has appeared in Solstice Literary Magazine, The Conium Review, Poetry & Audience, and other places, and her essays and interviews have featured on Dead Darlings and GrubWrites. For a full list of publications and editorial positions, check out her publications page. She’s served on the editorial team for Post Road magazine and The Conium Review, and is Consulting Editor at Solstice and Fiction Editor at Pangyrus magazine. Sarah is a graduate of the 2014-15 Novel Incubator program at GrubStreet.