Sasha Dawn

Bella Vie Studios

Sasha Dawn teaches writing at community colleges and offers pro bono writing workshops to local schools. She lives in her native northern Illinois, where she collects tap shoes, fabric swatches, and tales of survival, and she harbors a crush on Thomas Jefferson. Her debut novel, Oblivion, was an Illinois Reads selection and one of the New York Public Library’s best books for teens.


What was your favorite book when you were a child?

One of my high school English teachers assigned two books that absolutely changed my life: the first was Mary Higgins Clark’s Where Are the Children? I never knew suspense could be so delicious! The second was Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird: extremely adult themes relayed through a child protagonist. Absolutely unbelievably brilliant!

What’s your favorite line from a book?

“Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I’m not the same, the next question is ‘Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!”—Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Who are your top three favorite authors or illustrators?

I don’t know if I can answer this question.

Why did you want to become an author or illustrator?

I don’t think writing was a choice, as much as it was a compelling force within me.

Do you have any advice for future authors or illustrators?

Read often, write constantly. Believe in yourself, and keep trying. In this hypercritical world, people tear you down, trample you, and climb over you. Build yourself back up again.