Stacia L. Brown was born in Lansing, MI at the very end of the 1970s. She grew up in Baltimore, MD–the county, not the city. She graduated from Trinity College (now Trinity Washington University) in DC with a BA in English and worked a few office gigs, while trying to jump-start her writing career, before moving to New York for grad school.

At 27, she finished an MFA in fiction at Sarah Lawrence College. She spent the next six and a half years working as an adjunct writing professor first in Michigan at Grand Valley State, Kuyper College and Grand Rapids Community College, then in Maryland at The Community College of Baltimore County and, for one dazzling semester, at MICA, while also working as a freelance writer for various publications, including The Washington Post, where she currently serves as a weekly contributor, New Republic, Rolling Stone, The Atlantic, and others.

In 2010, she became a mother.

For a semi-complete list of Stacia’s online publications, visit her bylines page.

Her short story, “Be Longing,” was selected for publication in It’s All Love: Black Writers on Soul Mates, Family, and Friends (Doubleday/Harlem Moon 2009), edited by Marita Golden. Her poem, “Combat,” appears in Reverie: Midwest African American Literature. Her essay on adjuncting as a single mother appears in the Demeter Press title, Laboring Positions: Black Women, Mothering and the Academy, edited by Sekile Nzinga-Johnson.

Stacia served as the 2013-14 Editorial Fellow for Community Engagement at Colorlines. In June 2015, she was part of the inaugural Thread at Yale class. She was a 2015 participant in Women’s Media Center’s Progressive Women’s Voices training program. She was a 2019 Tin House Scholar and a participant in the Cambridge Writers Workshop in Paris, also in 2019.

In addition to her work in print, Stacia is also an accomplished audio storyteller. In November 2015, Stacia became the creator and producer of Baltimore: The Rise of Charm City, a radio and podcast series that tells intergenerational stories of place and memory in Baltimore City. Baltimore: The Rise of Charm City is part of the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR)’s 2015 Finding America: Localore project and is produced in partnership with WEAA 88.9.

She is the creator of Hope Chest, a collection of audio essays written to her daughter and present in podcast form at SoundCloud and Apple Podcasts. Hope Chest has been featured on BBC Radio 4’s Short Cuts and the Third Coast International Audio Festival podcast, Re:Sound. It was named one of Audible Feast’s Best New Podcasts of 2017. She also created and produces a micro-podcast for middle-grade book reviews, which her daughter narrates and hosts. It’s called Story on Stories.

In 2018, Stacia landed a gig at WAMU, as a producer of the NPR-syndicated daily news program, 1A. In 2020, she relocated from Maryland to North Carolina, where she currently produces radio and podcasts (including the incomparable Great Grief with Nnenna Freelon) and edits writing projects for WUNC, North Carolina’s NPR station and serves as an advice columnist for Slate’s weekly parenting advice column, Care and Feeding.

Stacia resides in Durham with her amazing daughter Story.

48 thoughts on “bio.

  1. Thanks for being a blogging “role model” as such. Love what I’ve read so far. I’ll keep checking back!

    1. thank you so much. i appreciate your comment and am humbled that you find the blog inspiring. 🙂

  2. I stumbled upon your blog last night and fell in love. I’ve only read a few posts but your thoughts and emotions resonate with me so deeply…WHOA. Keep it coming!

  3. Just discovered your blog (directed by the crew over at PB) and am riveted. Your writing is phenomenal and your journey through pregnancy is so compelling! Thanks for sharing your writing with us 🙂

  4. I just read your Motes and Beams article and decided to look up more of your work because that piece had my jaw on the floor. You are an amazing writer and thinker. I can’t wait to read more.

  5. Wow great Blog! I was thinking today about what happened with the girls at Bowie and their situatuion and it led me here… great piece I loved the beginning of it. I got really excited when I saw that you grew up in Bmore, so did I but in the city not the county lol. I went to Trinity also!

  6. I looked up the word awesome in the dictionary, and your picture was there!

  7. Hi Stacia,

    I followed you here from your article on Scandal, the one about Olivia/the president and its comparisons to Sally Hemmings. This based on a google search I did for ‘Scandal Olivia Slave master’. Thank you so much for the piece – I started watching Scandal online on Friday, and though I find it entertaining, I have been basically distressed (which I realise probably sounds like an exaggeration, but still, feels true) by the ‘relationship’ between Olivia & Fitz. Same with her new relationship with Ballard. They both seem to be based on her submitting to their commands, to her being helpless and they being masterful, and (in the case of the main one), based on her being worn into submission and acquiescence, at his beck and call. And then you have the whole ‘i want painful’ – really?!

    So anyways, I realise I have blathered, and that the article was written over a year ago, and the world has long moved on, but I’m only just catching up. So thank you.

    And don’t even get me started on the sympathetic piortrayal of Huck, who just happened to use ‘enhanced interrogation’ of his own on the Charlie character, which conveniently produced the outcome he needed, and for which Charlie seems to bear him no long-term ill-will. Along with Huck’s PTSD we basically get ‘torture is really bad, unless you’re the good guys and doing it for a good reason, then it’s ok’.

    Enough – I just came by to say thank you (your article helped convince me I’m not paranoid and over-sensitive).


  8. I recently came across your article about Jada. I just wanted to say Thank You. As a rape survivor myself (who, for the first time after 13 years is finally seeking help and support), I could not stop crying at how your articulated perfectly what the problem is with these generations. I really do not know what else to say at this point, except, Thank You So Much.

    1. Ashley, thank you so much for reaching out. I’m so sorry you’ve had to deal with your trauma along for so long, but I’m glad to hear that you’re finding help and support resources now. You are brave and resilient, and I appreciate your correspondence. Take care; you’ll be in my thoughts and prayers.

  9. I just read your post, “Carrying Jada: When ‘Standing With’ Isn’t Enough.” Powerful piece and sad that it’s needed. We had better figure out some way to teach empathy to future generations or we’re done.

  10. Your writing is eloquent. Amazing pieces on Michael Brown and Jada. I appreciate your bringing this to the forefront of our minds. We do need to be more aware and carry these families with us in our hearts and in our prayers. God bless you, Stacia. I am so glad to have found your blog. Thank you for your words!

  11. Dear Stacia,
    I know you have your self-doubts (noted and read right here…), but do not ever doubt that you are a fine writer: eloquent, clear, thoughtful, cogent, wide-ranging. Just finished your motherhood and empathy and Cosby posts, and a good deal of this blog, and there are certainly no doubts in MY mind. ‘o)
    Best wishes to you and Story (what a great name),
    eB (sempty year old white dude in Salt Lake City)

  12. i just read your article in the Post on raising a free-spirited black child – thank you so much for sharing your perspectives and experiences on this issue. i’m eager to dig into your blog, you have a lovely “voice” and i especially appreciate when a person of color chooses to share on racial justice-related topics.

  13. I recently read your article in the Washington Post about Rihanna and Carnival, and as a Trini mas player, I thought I would raise a couple interesting points. The word “carnival’ actually means farewell to flesh and in Trinidad, Brazil and New Orleans, the festival takes place on the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, it is a precursor to the onset of Lent. I must admit to being somewhat amused that a discussion on Carnival celebrations in the Caribbean never once mentioned the motherlode – Trinidad Carnival, the largest, most expensive, elaborate, oldest Carnival in the islands, with roots in French and African traditions and dating back to the 1700s. Our Carnival season actually begins on Boxing Day (Dec 26th), ramping up as the weeks go by and ending on Ash Wednesday, when all good mas players find themselves in church for the priest to place ashes on our foreheads.

    1. Thanks for commenting. I’ve been fielding a bit of criticism from Trinis who felt like the piece excluded them and the history of their Carnival, so your points are taken and will join the others in my ongoing mental education about the importance of Trinidadian Carnival history.

      I didn’t mention Trinidad Carnival in this piece because the people I was able to interview for it — strictly about their experiences as mas players and the emotions/perceptions they had at the time — didn’t attend Trinidad Carnival. They attended in St. Vincent and at Caribana. I didn’t delve deeply into various carnivals’ historical roots — including Crop Over — because the piece was meant to focus only on why Western backlash against Rihanna’s carnival fashion dismisses mas players’ emotional connection to the experience.

      I know it isn’t a comprehensive piece and that it isn’t a satisfying read for anyone whose cultural experiences and histories weren’t referenced. I understand that not spending time discussing Trinidad Carnival culture seems like an oversight given its size. And I’m aware that my essay isn’t a definitive work on the history of mas or on anyone’s experience as a player except the two women I interviewed.

  14. I just read your “raising a free-spirited black child” and wanted to drop by. I understand a LOT of stuff in that post. There are a lot of luxuries that people have decided to make an unwritten law to have and shame on you if you can’t afford them. Add in the crazy people, and now on top of financial issues we’re being called neglectful parents and child abusers because of things like not buying a $500 stroller that’s the same size as the car we drive. My social class and culture also gets a lot of false accusations and lies spread about us thanks to the morons in the media and anybody gullible enough to believe it without doing their research. Maybe if all us low-income folk band together and push back, we can get them to shush or stop lying, eh? 🙂

    1. I’m all for “banding together” with other mothers, but I’m not in favor of drawing comparisons between being judged for what you can’t afford as a parent and being arrested for neglect or abandonment for letting your child play alone at a public park or eat at table alone in a mall’s food court. Those aren’t remotely similar situations. I can understand the urge to find an accessible point of entry (in your case “not buying a $500 dollar stroller”) when attempting to empathize with someone else’s experiences, but it can be really insulting to compare situations that are as dissimilar as these, even when seeking to establish common ground. All mothers are unfairly judged and scrutinized, certainly. But after I spent a great deal of time and took great care to outline various instances in which black mothers were literally — not metaphorically or figuratively — criminalized, their children removed from their custody, felony charges brought against them, their sole sources of employment lost, it’s disheartening to discover that anyone could walk away from that essay believing that we’re all in the same boat. We aren’t.

  15. I just wanted to drop by and say, I’m thankful for your voice. The honesty and self-awareness that comes across in your writing is so powerful and resonant… You give me hope; a light, luminous, floating lantern type of hope. Lol. Thank you.

  16. I love this bio. Congratulations in all of your achievements. It gives me hope seeing a fellow woman making it in this often times stereotypical world. I would love to understand more about the Black community in the US as I’m Kenyan by birth and heritage. And for that reason, you get a follow from me.

    1. Thanks so much for following me! I really appreciate it, and I look forward to learning from you and hopefully shedding a little more light on the U.S. black experience with you via my work here.

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