Sarah Blake grew up in New Jersey, but countless family dinners in Philadelphia made Philly feel like home, too. She got her BA in Mathematics from The College of New Jersey, then her MA in English from The University of Texas at Austin, followed by her MFA in Creative Writing from The Pennsylvania State University. Then she moved back near Philadelphia, this time on the PA side of the city, where she lived for eight years.
In 2019, she moved to the UK, published her first novel, and then her mother died and her marriage of nearly ten years fell apart. She has been piecing her life back together with the help of her family, friends, and readers. She writes about these strange years in her Substack, The Vulgar American.
More of her writing can be read around the internet. Her short stories are at Short Édition, Catapult , and Berfrois. Her interview series are at The Chicago Review of Books and at The Rumpus. Her recent poems are at Court Green and NightBlock. Her talk on Contemporary Mythopoetics from AWP 2017 was part of the AWP Podcast Series.
The Sea Witch poems are a collaborative project with Kimberly Quiogue Andrews. The Sea Witch Needs a Mortgage for the Land, If Not for the House of Bones is at The Missouri Review. Other poems from the growing collection are in PRISM, Juked, The Arkansas International, The Los Angeles Review, DUSIE , Jet Fuel Review , Up the Staircase, and They Said: a Multi-Genre Anthology of Contemporary Collaborative Writing.
Blake has always been interested in collaborative and interdisciplinary work. For nearly a decade she has collaborated with visual artist and poet, Nicky Arscott, whose work is in both Let’s Not Live on Earth and In Springtime. One Way to Get There is a poem in parts, self-published, illustrated by Peter Santa-Maria, coded by Noah Schoenholtz using Reveal.js by Hakim El Hattab. Blake’s chapbook, Named After Death, was published alongside a workbook for adults, filled with activities and writing prompts, illustrated by Lynne Kovalchik.
The entirety of The Starship was first published in daily, illustrated installments at Berfrois, featuring a different artist each day. And a recording of the beginning of The Starship, originally recorded for TriQuarterly, is in the song, “We’re Getting Older,” by Instar.
One poem from Mr. West, “A Day at the Mall Reminds Me of America,” was selected by director Ayse Altinok to be made into a short film for Motionpoems.
To celebrate the release of her second novel, Clean Air, Blake worked with computer programmer, Maxi Schell, to design a small video game.
For the most up-to-date information about Blake's publications, readings, and other events, follow her on Instagram or subscribe to her Substack.