Sarah Hall took a degree in English and Art History at Aberystwyth University, and began to take writing seriously from the age of twenty, first as a poet, several of her poems appearing in poetry magazines, then as a fiction-writer. She took an M Litt in Creative Writing at St Andrew's University and stayed on for a year afterwards to teach on the undergraduate Creative Writing programme.Her first novel, Haweswater, was published in 2002. It is set in the 1930s, focuses on one family - the Lightburns - and is a rural tragedy about the disintegration of a community of Cumbrian hill-framers, due to the building of a reservoir. It won several awards, including the 2003 Commonwealth Writers Prize (Overall Winner, Best First Book). Sarah Hall currently lives in North Carolina. Her second book, The Electric Michelangelo (2004), set in the turn-of-the-century seaside resorts of Morecambe Bay and Coney Island, was shortlisted for the 2004 Man Booker Prize for Fiction and the 2005 Commonwealth Writers Prize (Eurasia Region, Best Book).The Carhullan Army (2007), won the 2007 John Llewellyn-Rhys Memorial Prize and was shortlisted for the 2008 Arthur C Clarke Award for Best Science Fiction.Her latest novel is How to Paint a Dead Man (2009).