Sadie Hoagland

Women need to know it’s possible to be a writer and a mother and a monster, especially on those days where it doesn’t seem like you’ll ever write again.

(April 29, 2021) Sadie Hoagland is the author of Strange Children and American Grief in Four Stages, which earned a starred review from Kirkus Reviews. She is an associate professor of English at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and the former editor of Quarterly West. Her work has been featured in Electric Literature, Mid-American Review, Five Points, Writer’s Digest, Women Writers, and Women’s Books, and elsewhere, and her work has earned four Pushcart Prize nominations. 


Sadie Hoagland
Strange Children
American Grief in Four Stages
Quarterly West
W. G. Sebald’s Austerlitz
Leigh Gilmore’s The Limits of Autobiography: Trauma and Testimony
Edith Pearlman’s “Honeydew”

sound bites

“Even the exhausting moments are hilarious.”

“By the time I had children, I felt more confident that I could balance the identity of being a writer with the identity of being a mother.”-@sadiehoagland

“I think there are a lot of barriers to becoming a creative writer, and one of them is that people tell you, ‘That’s not a good career, to make any money doing that.’”

“I think ambivalence is really underrated. I was excited about the idea of motherhood, but was also not sure if it was possible with my writing life.”-@sadiehoagland

“Before you have children, you’re not sure your heart is going to expand in the correct ways. Writing a character who expressed the worst possible scenario of emotional wreckage after giving birth allowed me to think about that in ways that were both artistic and personal.”

“What is language in the space of grief? Why do we only have clichés to express our sympathy to someone who’s just experienced something devastating?”-@sadiehoagland

“There’s a moment when you realize you’ve lost the previous version of your child; the little one they were. That continually happens in parenthood.”-@sadiehoagland

“No one’s going to present time to me on a platter and say, ‘Would you like to write for four hours today?’ I just find, every week, the little pockets that I can.”-@sadiehoagland

“The key thing for young women thinking about being a writer and a mother is that you need to be incredibly disciplined and motivated, despite very little encouragement.”-@sadiehoagland

“I write dark things. Once I had children, I became more careful; if I’m gonna engage with darkness, I’d better do it for a good reason and with a sense of responsibility.”-@sadiehoagland

“I’d love to have both a raw sense of aimless prose and a tight storyline. When writers can do that—like Toni Morrison—you get pretty extraordinary books.”-@sadiehoagland

“My expectations for being a mother have shifted; I’m not necessarily the tour guide anymore, I’m kind of along for the ride.”-@sadiehoagland

“Women need to know it’s possible to be a writer and a mother and a monster, especially on those days where it doesn’t seem like you’ll ever write again.”-@sadiehoagland

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