Author Interview: Sarah Perry ’04 and Andrea Applebee ’06 on becoming writers

Accomplished writers Sarah Perry '04 and Andrea Applebee '06 revisited Davidson as part of the English Department's Literary Series. While on campus, the two read from their work, met with students and faculty, discussed their craft and reflected on this formative place.

Perry published her memoir, After the Eclipse, in September to praise in publications including the New York Times. Described by the Times review as mystery and elegy, Perry reconstructs life before her mother's homicide in 1994 and during the 12 ensuing years leading to the killer's capture and conviction. Perry earned an M.F.A. in nonfiction from Columbia University, where she served as publisher of Columbia: A Journal of Literature and Art. She is the recipient of a writers' fellowship from the Edward F. Albee Foundation and a Javits Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Education. Perry grew up in Maine and lives in New York.

Applebee is a poet, editor and art writer who began experiencing vision loss at age five and lives with near blindness. Her first collection of poems, Aletheia, was published in August. Applebee relocated to Athens, Greece, from the United States in 2016 with her guide dog, Mercy. There, she works as a freelance writing coach, and collaborates to lead a writing workshop for refugees and migrants. Applebee earned her M.F.A. in nonfiction and a certificate in rhetoric and composition from the University of Pittsburgh. She has held teaching positions at the University of Pennsylvania and Duke University. She currently serves as an editor at Tupelo Quarterly.

Here, Perry and Applebee discuss creative license, the personal and political, and work yet to be done with Professor and Chair of English Shireen Campbell and Douglas C. Houchens Professor of English Alan Michael Parker.

Read the full interview on the Davidson Journal Online.


  • December 15, 2017