Sarah is the author of nine novels. The ninth, Above the East China Sea, was published in 2014. Sarah has been selected for the Barnes & Noble Discover Great Writers series; a Dobie-Paisano Fellowship; New York Public Library's 25 Books to Remember list; Elle Magazine Reader's Prize; People Magazine's Page Turners; Library Journal's Best Novels; and a National Magazine Silver Award for her columns in Texas Monthly. In 2012 Sarah was voted Best Austin Author for the fourth time by the readers of the Austin Chronicle; was inducted into the Texas Literary Hall of Fame; and received the Illumine Award for Excellence in Fiction from the Austin Library Foundation. In 2013 she was selected to be The University of Texas' Libraries Distinguished Author speaker, and was featured on NPR's The Moth Radio Hour.
She has written screenplays for Paramount, CBS, Warner Bros, National Geographic, ABC, TNT, Hemdale Studio, and several independent producers. Sarah's original screenplay, Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen, is currently in development with Pantheon of Women. She has contributed articles to The New York Times, Salon, O Magazine, and is a columnist for Texas Monthly. Sarah, who moved all over the world growing up with her air force family, lives in Austin, Texas.
Sarah Bird's website
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A Conversation with Sarah Bird, author of the novel The Flamenco Academy
How did you decide to take on the subject of Flamenco for a novel?
The one subject that I always knew I wanted to write about was an obsessive love affair I had that began when I was 16 and fell in love at first sight with a deliriously handsome young man and remained so until I was 23. For years I tried to capture this experience on paper, but it always came out as a suburban melodrama.
When I was 20 and living with Beloved, I walked in on him in bed with a friend. Realizing that I had to put at least an ocean between us or I would never break free, I went to Europe. So, dazed and heartbroken, I hitchhiked and Eurailed for a year and a half. During that time I found a job as a tour guide in a botanical garden owned by White Russian émigrés on Spains Costa Brava. One very late night, very early morning, in a tiny club outside of Barcelona, I saw an astonishing performance of what I would learn later was flamenco.
Flamenco was the first materialization Id witnessed that mirrored my tumultuous inner landscape. Decades later, as I was struggling to make a novel convey the experience of obsessive love, I ...
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