Sean OBrien has written seven collections of poetry. The Drowned Book (2007) won the Forward and T. S. Eliot prizes. Cousin Coat: Selected Poems 19762001 appeared in 2002. His other work includes the book of essays The Deregulated Muse (1998), the verse plays The Birds (2002) and Keepers of the Flame (2003) and a verse translation of Dantes Inferno (2006). In 2008 his collection of short stories, The Silence Room, was published, followed in 2009 by his novel Afterlife. He is Professor of Creative Writing at Newcastle University.