Sejal Shah is the author of the debut memoir in essays, This Is One Way to Dance (University of Georgia Press, forthcoming June 2020—available for pre-order now). Her essay collection explores race, place, belonging, and South Asian American identity. The daughter of Gujarati parents who immigrated to the United States from India and Kenya, Sejal grew up in Rochester, New York. Her short stories and essays appear widely in print and online—including Brevity; Conjunctions; Kenyon Review; The Literary ReviewThe Margins; The Rumpus; Under Her Skin: How Girls Experience Race in America (Seal Press); and others.

Sejal Shah

Sejal Shah: Photo by Preston Merchant

She is the recipient of a 2018 New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) / New York State Council for the Arts (NYSCA) Fellowship in Fiction; other awards include fellowships and residencies from The Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary StudiesBlue Mountain Center, the Kenyon Review Writers WorkshopKundiman, the Millay Colony for the Arts, New York University, Poets & Writers, the Ragdale Foundation, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.

Sejal holds a BA in English from Wellesley College and an MFA in English / Creative Writing from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She is a longtime teacher of creative writing at colleges, privately, and in community-based workshops. After many years living away, Sejal returned in 2012 to her hometown of Rochester.