Sarah Layden

“Layden’s soaring themes encompass the full range of what it means to be human.”

-Elizabeth Smith for Necessary Fiction

Sarah Layden is the author of Imagine Your Life Like This (University of Wisconsin Press, 2023), The Story I Tell Myself About Myself, winner of the 2017 Sonder Press Chapbook Competition, and Trip Through Your Wires (Engine Books, 2015), a novel. She is co-author with Bryan Furuness of The Invisible Art of Literary Editing (Bloomsbury Academic, 2023.) Her short fiction can be found in Boston ReviewStone Canoe, Blackbird, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, the anthologies Best Microfiction 2020, Welcome to the Neighborhood, and Sudden Flash Youth, and elsewhere. Her recent nonfiction work has appeared in The Washington Post, Newsweek, Poets & Writers, SalonRiver TeethThe Millions, and Identity Theory. She is an associate professor of English at Indiana University Indianapolis.

salayden (at) gmail (dot) com

website under construction (as are we all)



“Legacy Contact,”

Where Light Can’t Reach,” upstreet Magazine 

“Gone for Good,” Sycamore Review

“The World in its Entirety an Open Door,” Necessary Fiction

“Nothing and Nobody,” Blackbird

“Bad Enough With Genghis Khan,” Boston Review


“Resuscitation,” Blackbird

“13 Things Your Mail Carrier Won’t Tell You,” Booth

“The Woman Who Was a House,” PANK

Essays & Journalism

“Reading in the Bardo,” Poets & Writers Magazine

“Side B,” River Teeth

“On Writing,” Women Writer’s, Women’s Books

A Lifting of Burdens: A Conversation with Mirza Waheed,” Identity Theory

“How Do You Know When to Stop Revising?” by Bryan Furuness and Sarah Layden, Poets & Writers

Revising with Lenses” by Bryan Furuness and Sarah Layden, Brevity  

Q&A with The Islands Author Dionne Irving,” Indianapolis Monthly 

Found in Translation: Mapping Budi Darma’s People from Bloomington,” The Millions 

“Adrian Matejka Is No Square Poet,” Indianapolis Monthly

“I Hope My Grandchildren Will Know Me By This Book,” An Interview with Patricia Henley for The Millions

“Cut the Sentimentality,” An Interview with Polly Rosenwaike for The Millions

Then Again, Maybe I Will: The Reads I Kept Hidden in My Youth,” The Millions

My Less-than-Glossy Life,” The Indianapolis Star

“Why I Banned ‘The Handmaid’s Tale,’ and Why We Need it More than Ever,” Salon

Satire & Short Humor

“It is Time to Put Steve Zahn in Everything,” The Belladonna Comedy

“I’ve Been to Ireland Once. The Banshees of Inisherin Should Win Best Picture.” The Belladonna Comedy

“Regretsy: ‘Exceedingly remorseful’ you took part in that insurrection? There’s an app for that,” Salon

“In the Aftermath of the Mass Shooting in (Name of City),” Newsweek

“Hope you’re enjoying March Madness here in Indianapolis.
Could you move that mask up?”
 The Washington Post

Unsolved Mysteries: Who’s that Lady?” Weekly Humorist 

“Live and Let Live, Laugh, Love,” Slackjaw

“I Know, Right?” TranslatedPoints in Case

“I Am The Mom in the Mop Commercial, and I Am Ready to Be
the Mom in the Vacation Commercial
,” Points in Case

“Seven Women on His Mind:
The ‘Take it Easy’ Ladies Tell All,”


“Missing Trees,” Doubleback Review

“Why This Pregnant Woman Walked Out of a Subway Restaurant in Tears,” and “The Return of Sad Beck, Thank God,” Hobart

“Astronauts Answer YouTube Questions from Space,” Sweet

“The Mystery of the World,” Juked

“In the Trunk,” “Something in the Way,” “The Tax Clown,” Blood Orange Review

Interviews, etc.

Playlist for Imagine Your Life Like ThisLargehearted Boy

TBR: To Be Read (Leslie Pietrzyk)

Q&A with Old Iron Press

Interviewed by James Figy for Fail Better series, FEAR NO LIT

John Ketzenberger’s Business Insider columnThe Indianapolis Star

Interviewed by Michael Noll (with craft exercise)Read to Write Stories