Sejal Shah

Sejal Shah: Photo by Preston Merchant

The daughter of Gujarati immigrants from India and Kenya, Sejal Shah is an essayist, fiction writer, poet, and longtime teacher of writing. Her writing has appeared in The Asian American Literary Review; Brevity; Conjunctions; Denver Quarterly; Indiana Review; the Kenyon Review; The Literary Review; The Massachusetts Review; The Margins; Under Her Skin: How Girls Experience Race in America (Seal Press); The Writer’s Chronicle; and others. She recently completed a story collection, How to Make Your Mother Cry, and a book of essays, Things People Say, and is currently sending both manuscripts out.

Sejal has been awarded fellowships and residencies from Blue Mountain Center, The Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Kundiman, Luther College, the Millay Colony for the Arts, Mount Holyoke College, the New York State Council on the Arts, New York University, the Ragdale Foundation, the Sanskriti Foundation, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. She has presented her work at Yale University, Wesleyan University, Smith College, Amherst College, Wellesley College, The Asian American Writers’ Workshop, the Bowery Poetry Club, Hamilton College, Grinnell College, Poets House, the Poetry Project, and the Peabody Essex Museum, among other places.

Sejal holds a BA in English from Wellesley College and an MFA in English / Creative Writing from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She teaches creative writing at the University of Rochester and at Writers & Books. She previously taught at Luther College (Iowa), Marymount Manhattan College (New York City), Mount Holyoke (Massachusetts), and UMass Amherst. In 2017, she will be a Peter Taylor Fellow in nonfiction at the Kenyon Review Writers Workshop; a resident at The Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies; and on the faculty of the Gell Summer Intensive. She lives in Rochester, New York.

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