Sarah Perry

Literary Birthday – 28 November – Sarah Perry

Happy Birthday, Sarah Perry, born 28 November 1979.


  1. You know how lots of women have known all their lives in a kind of visceral way that they will be a mother? For me, that was writing. It was this absolutely existential need that this was why I was on this earth – but I never wrote.
  2. I remember saying that I sold my soul in order to be a writer. It was necessary for me to leave behind the faith that has been the main driving force of my life if I was to write.
  3. I think what I really resent is the idea that I am a ‘woman writer’ because I don’t go around thinking of myself as a woman. Biologically, it is fairly obvious that I am female but where it extends beyond that I don’t know.
  4. I think a lot of literature deals in absolutes and I genuinely wanted to ask more questions than I answered. We rather live in a time where we like an absolute; so you either are a person of faith who is very mystical and believes in the supernatural or you are a rationalist and a scientist and you don’t have faith. Actually it’s much more nuanced than that. What I wanted to do was to write a book that was simultaneously modern and historical. (via)
  5. I do have a rather tense relationship with my own strangeness, in that respect: at times I feel appallingly out of kilter with the rest of the world, and at other times I feel quite at ease and am a little startled when asked about it. (via)
  6. I would like readers to go away with an enriched and enriching sense of the variety and complexity of human intimacy — including connections that seem at first glance to be unhelpful, unsanctioned, or transgressive. I would also dearly love it if I could upend some of the very mistaken notions in common currency about what Victorian women were like. They were not fragile creatures silently hemming handkerchiefs in gilded cages, but, by the end of the 19th century, were active in politics, social reform, the sciences, medicine, the arts, early feminism, prison reform, engineering, and math. (via)

Sarah Perry is an English author. She has had two novels published: After Me Comes the Flood and The Essex SerpentAfter Me Comes the Flood was longlisted for the 2014 Guardian First Book Award and nominated for the 2014 Folio Prize. The Essex Serpent was named Waterstones Book of the Year 2016, shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award 2017, and longlisted for the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction.

Source for first three quotes


Stiggler, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

 by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 28th November 2017