Sandra Beasley won the 2009 Barnard Women Poets Prize for I Was the Jukebox, selected by Joy Harjo (W.W. Norton, 2010). Her first collection, Theories of Falling, won the 2007 New Issues Poetry Prize judged by Marie Howe. In 2013, she won the Center for Book Arts Poetry Chapbook competition, judged by Harryette Mullin; a selection of her poems has also been translated into German by Ron Winkler and published in chapbook form (Hochroth Press, 2011). Her poetry has appeared in such magazines as Tin House, AGNI, Virginia Quarterly Review, and The Believer, as well as anthologies such as The Best American Poetry 2010, The Ecopoetry Anthology, The Incredible Sestina Anthology, and the District Lines anthology published by Politics & Prose.
Honors for Beasley’s work include an Artist Fellowship from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the Larry Neal Writer’s Award from DCCAH, the University of Mississippi Summer Poet in Residence position, the Lenoir-Rhyne University Writer in Residence position, the Friends of Literature Prize from the Poetry Foundation, and the Maureen Egen Exchange Award from Poets & Writers (selected as a winning resident of DC). She has received fellowships to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the Millay Colony, Virginia Center for Creative Arts, the Jentel Artist Residency, and Vermont Studio Center. In addition to travel for fellowships and residencies, Beasley has given readings across the country. Recent venues have included the Boston Book Festival, Miami Book Fair International, Piccolo Spoleto, and the AJC-Decatur Book Festival.
Having been born and raised in northern Virginia, Beasley returned to the DC area after earning a B.A. (magna cum laude) in English Language & Literature at the University of Virginia. She has made the northwest quadrant of Washington her home since 2002, and received an MFA in creative writing from The American University in 2004. She is extensively involved in the Arts Club of Washington, and in the past served on the boards of The Word Works and The Writer's Center, where she has also taught seminars and workshops. Her nonfiction has been featured in The New York Times, Oxford American, and the Wall Street Journal, following an initial break of writing the "XX Files" columns for The Washington Post Magazine. In 2011 Crown published her memoir, Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales From an Allergic Life, a cultural history of food allergy.
Beltway Poetry Quarterly: 5 poems, Spring 2009: http://washingtonart.com/beltway/beasley.html
Written by Sandra Beasley October 2013