Author Photos by Rob Berkley
Sophfronia Scott grew up in Lorain, Ohio, a hometown she shares with author Toni Morrison. Her father was a Mississippi-born steelworker who never learned how to read and her mother was a stay-at-home mom who always made sure there were books in the house. She holds a BA in English from Harvard and an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Sophfronia spent a big chunk of her career as a writer and editor for Time and People where she developed the uncanny ability to create order out of chaos by whittling massive amounts of facts and ideas into a single cohesive form. She also co-authored the groundbreaking cover story “Twentysomething,” the first study identifying the demographic group known as Generation X.
When Sophfronia’s first novel, All I Need to Get By, was published by St. Martin’s Press in 2004 Sophfronia was nominated for best new author at the African American Literary Awards and hailed by Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. as “potentially one of the best writers of her generation.” Her essays, short stories, and articles have appeared in Killens Review of Arts & Letters, Saranac Review, Numéro Cinq, Ruminate, Barnstorm Literary Journal, Sleet Magazine, NewYorkTimes.com, More, and O, The Oprah Magazine. She has forthcoming an essay collection, Love’s Long Line, from Ohio State University Press/Mad Creek Books, and a spiritual memoir, This Child of Faith: Raising a Spiritual Child in a Secular World, co-written with her son, being published by Paraclete Press.
Sophfronia lives in Sandy Hook, Connecticut with her husband and son and where she continues to fight a losing battle against the weeds in her flowerbeds. She enjoys teaching on the faculty of Regis University’s Mile-High MFA in Denver, Colorado and the Fairfield County Writer’s Studio in Westport, Connecticut.
2014, FINALIST, for “Why I Must Dance Like Tony Manero,” Ruminate Magazine VanderMey Nonfiction Prize
2014, HONORABLE MENTION for “White Shirts,” New Millennium Writing Awards
2012, HONORABLE MENTION for “Murder Will Not Be Tolerated,” Glimmer Train Fiction Open
2009, WINNER, Indie Excellence Book Award, Non-Fiction Business, Doing Business By the Book.
2009, FINALIST, USA Book News Best Books, Non-Fiction, Doing Business By the Book.
2006, Distinguished Alumni Award, Clearview High School, Lorain, Ohio
2004, African American Literary Awards Show (AALAS) Open Book Awards, Nomination for Best New Author, Female.
2002, Black Achievers in Industry Award given by the Harlem YMCA
1998 Harvard College Fund, Joseph R. Hamlen Award for Alumni Service
1993, National Association of Black Journalists Award for Excellence in Journalism for the Time Magazine article “The Hidden Hurdle”.