Karissa Knox Sorrell is a poet, writer, and ESL educator. She is the author of the poetry chapbook Evening Body (Finishing Line Press, 2016). She’s also a contributing essayist to the anthology Soul Bare (InterVarsity Press, 2016). Her poems and essays can be seen in a variety of literary journals, including Cumberland River Review, Whale Road Review, San Pedro River Review, St. Katherine Review, Relief Journal, and Gravel Mag. Karissa has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Murray State University in 2010.
Karissa has seventeen years of experience in public education, fifteen of which have been in the ESL field. After eleven years of teaching in grades K-5 and 9-12, she moved into an instructional coaching position, and for five years, she worked with teachers of English Learners. In 2016, Karissa returned to the classroom to teach Newcomer English Learners at the high school level. She earned her Master of Education with a focus on Teaching English to Non-English Language Background Learners from Tennessee State University in 2003.
She was raised as a preacher’s kid and missionary kid and partially grew up in Bangkok, Thailand. In her twenties, she took a journey from evangelical Protestantism to Eastern Orthodoxy. As of late, she has had more doubts and questions than certainty about faith. She continues to challenge tradition, seek truth, and make peace with her changing beliefs.
Karissa lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her family of four.