Scott Russell Sanders (born 1945 in Memphis, Tennessee) is an American novelist and essayist.
Sanders has won acclaim for his skill as a personal essayist. He is a contributing editor to Audubon magazine and won the John Burroughs Natural History Essay Award in 2000. A frequent public lecturer, his essay "The Force of Spirit," which opens his 2000 book of essays by the same title, was first given as a lecture before the Orion Society's Millennium Conference in 1999. The essay later appeared in the Best American Essays 2000 and was the fourth essay of Sanders' to appear in the Best American series. He received the Lannan Literary Award in 1995 for his non-fiction writing and has received the Frederick Bachman Lieber Award for Distinguished Teaching, the highest teaching award given at IU.
Sanders was a distinguished professor of English at Indiana University, until his retirement in 2009, where he has taught since 1971. During his career, he has spent sabbatical years as a writer-in-residence at Phillips Exeter Academy, and as a Visiting Professor at University of Oregon, MIT, and Beloit College . He is married with two children, Eva and Jesse, both of whom he addresses in letters included in The Force of Spirit.