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About Sands

SANDS HALL is an author, a director, a teacher, an editor, an actor, and while she is a bit diffident about calling herself a musician, she does love music and writes songs and performs with friends whenever she can.

She is the author of the novel Catching Heaven (Ballantine), a Random House Reader’s Circle Selection and a Willa Award Finalist for Best Contemporary Fiction.  Her plays include an adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, which recently enjoyed its tenth production, and the comic/drama Fair Use, which explores the “was it plagiarism?” controversy surrounding Wallace Stegner’s novel, Angle of Repose. Sands’ directing experience runs the gamut from Shakespeare to Giradoux to new works by new playwrights, and her acting resume is long and varied.  She is also the author of a book of writing essays and exercises, Tools of the Writer’s Craft. A popular teacher, she leads workshops at the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and the Iowa Summer Writing Festival, among others. She is currently an assistant professor of English and Creative Writing at Franklin & Marshall College, in Lancaster, PA, where she is also the editor of the F&M Alumni Arts Review.

 Sands was born in La Jolla, California, and spent in childhood in Squaw Valley, in the Sierra Nevada. She received her BA in Drama from the University of California, and attended the American Conservatory Theatre’s Advanced Training Program in San Francisco. She spent four years in New York City, and ten in Los Angeles, performing in theatres large and small, on the soap opera The Guiding Light, various guest starring roles on television, roles in various films, gathering grist for her writer mill.

She eventually headed back to school, earning her MFA in Fiction from the Iowa Writers Workshop and a second MFA in Theatre Arts, also from the University of Iowa.

She currently divides her time between Lancaster, PA, and the the historic mining town of Nevada City, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. Home is sometimes a fluid word, but she is glad of wonderful friends in both places. 


Sands' cats Oona and Lucy.


You can email Sands at :

sands "at sign" sandshall "dot" com

The email address has been deconstructed in order to foil spam.




  • LITTLE WOMEN (An adaptation of the novel by Louisa May Alcott.)
  • FAIR USE (An exploration of the controversy surrounding Wallace Stegner's use of Mary Hallock Foote's life and writing in his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, Angle of Repose.

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