Alex Sheal


United Kingdom

Alex Sheal's writing has featured in the New York Times, Southeast Asia Globe, Litro, 3am and the Los Angeles Review. He has been the recipient of the David Higham Award and The New Writer Novella Prize, and was a recent runner-up in the Kurt Vonnegut Prize for Speculative Fiction. His travel essays appear in the photography book 'Vietnam' by Fokion Zissiadis (Rizzoli New York).

Alex has a BA First Class Honours in English Literature from Goldsmiths, University of London and an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia, UK.

He lives in Hanoi, Vietnam, and is a writer, teacher and founder of Vietnam in Focus.



New York Times
In the Jungle - An Interview with Trung Trung Dinh

“Brother, when do you think we’ll have freedom?” the novelist Trung Trung Đỉnh remembers asking one of the guerrillas he fought alongside for seven years in the jungles of An Khê, central Vietnam. ! “When these have completely worn out,” his comrade replied, pointing to the rubber-tire sandals on his feet, the famously indestructible “Ho Chi Minh sandals. Only then will we be free!” An interview with Vietnamese war veteran and author Trung Trung Dinh

Southeast Asia Globe
Reflecting on face masks as Vietnam enjoys Covid-19 'liberation'

Against the odds, Vietnam has become a global success story in combating Covid-19 as it has started to open up once again. Hanoi resident Alex Sheal has been present for Vietnam's latest "liberation", and believes attitudes towards the humble face mask highlight the difference between his new home and the West.


The Los Angeles Review USA
On the Rooftops

Our new mayor, a rat of his word, announced the crackdown after inauguration. Rottweilers were rounded up first, muzzled, then marched out of town. Few onlookers said a word: a notorious mauling years back stayed fresh in the memory. Next came the Dobermans: a more refined breed, but reputed to bite.

3am Magazine UK
Before the Storm

I met her in a cocktail bar, but she wasn't working as a waitress. She was getting drunk like me at the counter, blabbing away to strangers, some of whom were queuing to order. We swooned this way and that, as if on the deck of a storm-swept ship; then she yelled in my ear.

Litro Magazine UK
Terrestrial, 2115

Aliens arrive in the Milky Way, park their spacecraft in a circle around planet Earth. The United Nations attempts to find out what they want, broadcasting radio and satellite signals, but the aliens either ignore them or don't understand. For several months, the spacecraft orbit Earth, their lights like new stars in the night sky, every attempt at communication unsuccessful.

Litro Magazine USA
Tomorrow I Shall Be Fetterless - But Where?

I would question the sanity of anyone who's not questioning their own sanity nowadays, Doctor, but this patient of mine - Patient Z, let's call him - put even me on edge with his talk. Had I read Poe's "Imp of the Perverse"?

Book on trafficking survivors in own words launched

Update: December, 09/2013 - 16:02 HA NOI (VNS) - The Centre for Women and Development (CDW) and the Spanish Embassys Agency for International Development Cooperation, has published the book "Peace House Shelter: Survivors of Trafficking in their Own Words".

North American Review
2019 Vonnegut Prize Winners | North American Review

Kurt Vonnegut's long friendship with former North American Review editor Loree Rackstraw brought him often to our hometown of Cedar Falls, Iowa. We are proud to honor the legacy of that friendship with a fiction prize that recognizes speculative writing with the wit, irreverence, humanity, and stylistic daring of its namesake.

Huffington Post
Read 15 Amazing Works Of Fiction In Less Than 30 Minutes

Check out these 15 amazing works of contemporary flash fiction: Twitter fiction and six-word stories have permeated the literary world, but the concept of telling very short tales isn't exactly new. H.P.

Short Story Recommendation: Before the Storm, by Alex Sheal

Recommendation by Joesphine Greenland I met her in a cocktail bar, but she wasn't working as a waitress. She was getting drunk like me at the counter, blabbing away to strangers, some of whom were queuing to order. From 'before the storm', by Alex Sheal, published by 3AM Magazine in March 2013 It does not look much on a page.


Rizzoli USA
Vietnam by Fokion Zissiadis

Over two trips, in spring and autumn 2016, photographer Fokion Zissiadis covered some 6,000 kilometers of road, track and trail, and rocky mountains, close to Vietnam's far northern frontier. These epic extremes have resisted generations of invaders across the centuries and are home to diverse tribal groups. The photographs in this collection show us a Vietnam known only to those following less-traveled paths. Fokion Zissiadis first took an interest in photography during his years as an...

Vietnam Centre for Women and Development
Survivors of Trafficking in their Own Words

A photographic book bringing together true stories of trafficking survivors who have found safety in Hanoi's Peace House Shelter over the past 6 years. The shelter´s residents were invited to share their stories as part of their recovery process, allowing them to speak for themselves, rather than through outsiders or "experts", to describe their experiences in their own ways. The often harrowing stories were selected and edited by Alex Sheal, alongside photography by Colm Pierce.