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Scott Russell Sanders


Divine Animal cover

















On May 4th, I took part in a public conversation with Terry Tempest Williams at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis. This was the opening event of a yearlong series sponosored by Indiana Humanities, aimed at fostering ecological awareness and an ethic of caring for the land. Photographs from the event convey a sense of Terry's luminous presence. That presence is also on display in her recently-published The Hour of Land: A Personal Topography of America's National Parks.

Once again this June, I will be teaching a workshop at the Bread Loaf Orion Conference. Here are some details:

3nd Annual Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers' Conference in Ripton, Vermont. June 3-9, 2016
The faculty includes poets Maurice Manning and Aimee Nezhukumatathil; creative nonfiction writers Jane Brox, David James Duncan, Rubén Martínez, Robert Michael Pyle, and Scott Russell Sanders; and fiction writer Belle Boggs.

This annual, week-long conference incorporates the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference model of small, focused workshops coupled with specialized classes on the craft of writing. Workshops will be limited to ten participants so that each manuscript will receive individual, focused attention and critique. All participants will also meet individually with their workshop leader to amplify and refine what was said in the workshop itself. Established editors, literary agents, and publishers will give presentations on placing work in magazines and navigating the environmental book publishing world. The conference is a collaboration between the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences, Orion magazine, and the Environmental Studies Program at Middlebury College.
Rolling admissions through March 15, 2016.


See the News link to learn about Scott's two new books coming out in fall 2016 and 2017. Here's the catalog copy for Dancing in Dreamtime.

Scott's new novel, Divine Animal, is available free as an e-book, and for sale in a print edition. See below for details.

A wound may be inflicted in a heartbeat—from an explosion, accident, or cruel act—but healing, if it comes at all, comes slowly.

Divine Animal is a story of healing, traced through the lives of characters bound together by a secret trauma. There is young Harlan, whose search for a path to manhood leads him from Ohio to a mountainside farm in Vermont, where he meets Katarina, a Swedish au pair who has come to America to perfect her English. There is Aurora, a teenage runaway who takes refuge in upstate New York, waiting tables and dodging questions. In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, there is Teresa Two Bears, an elderly Ojibwa woman whose son died aboard a Navy ship, and in the same port on Lake Superior is Naomi Rosenthal, a physician haunted by the photo of a woman grieving at a soldier’s grave in Arlington Cemetery, near where Naomi’s own brother, killed by a landmine in Vietnam, lies buried. There is folk singer Jack Haymaker, who lost his parents in a landslide near his home in Washington’s Cascade Mountains, and now travels the country performing his songs, lifting spirits and facing down grief.  And in the hill country of southern Indiana, there is Martin Zakar, an architect who restores derelict buildings, a man drawn by a thread of memory toward an elusive woman whose secret unites all of these seemingly separate lives.

Download for Kindle (mobi file, 2.2 MB)

Download for iPad, Nook, PC, Mac (epub file, 2.2MB)

Print copies of Divine Animal may be purchased for $16 each, including postage.

To order the book, send an email with the following information:

  • The number of copies you wish to order

  • The address to which the book or books should be mailed

  • How you wish the book or books to be inscribed (to a person, for example, or to a school or library)

You may send a check for the appropriate amount after the package reaches you. The address to use for mailing the check will appear on the label on the package.

From the "Author's Note" to Divine Animal:

Within the span of my writing life, the book as a physical artifact made of ink on paper has been gradually supplanted—some would say, doomed to extinction—by the book as a digital file readable on various electronic devices. While I love books printed on paper, and will continue reading them by preference as long as I live, before publishing Divine Animal in this traditional form, I wanted to experiment first with an e-book version that I would be able to give away.

Why give it away? The practical reason is that I earn my living by teaching, not by selling books. In writing Divine Animal, I did not set out to produce a commodity for sale; I set out to tell a story, to inhabit the lives of characters who had captured my imagination, to reflect on how things fall apart and how they might be mended. Of course it is perfectly honorable to earn one’s living by writing. But that was never my ambition, nor would it have been a realistic one, given my subjects and concerns and style. A deeper reason for giving away the e-book version is to make a small return to the cultural commons, that indispensable source for all creative work, including my own—the commons of language, literature, libraries, schools and colleges, the arts and sciences and all forms of knowledge, as well as countless conversations with fellow seekers and makers.

Read the "Author's Note" for Divine Animal here.

Other titles by Scott Russell Sanders (click cover for details):


Earth Works cover Conservationist Manifesto cover Wilderness Plots cover


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