Archive for the ‘Assignments’ Category

  • WRITER’S HESITATION or I’m not “blocked,” I’m lazy

    Date: 2015.05.01 | Category: Assignments, The Art of Writing | Response: 1

    Often it’s been said that there is no such thing as writer’s block.  I tend to agree.  However, personally, I have “writer’s hesitation.”  [I know, the period inside the quotation looks weird, but I’ve been told by experts that’s the way it is.] I hesitate for various reasons, but most recently, if I want to be truthful, because I am lazy (not all the time, and not about everything).

    I want to write a poem.  It’s been awhile since I wrote a poem.  Specifically, maybe a year or five or eight.  I don’t count years or poems, it’s just that I’ve been writing prose.  But the poem I want to write is someplace outside of myself.

    The poem is gurgling, wants to be set free; but, I won’t release it.  Freeing it would take time and effort.  What is beneath the surface?  Something so big I can’t even name it.  Something larger than myself.  And that’s the point.  I’m 68 years old.  For the past thirty something years I’ve been writing about me (at least recently I’ve managed to write about me in terms of not only intersectionality, but also in connection to local and national historical events), but I want to move beyond myself, discover more than my own humanity.

    The enormity of knowing what to write about has me cowering in a corner (okay, on the couch watching Netflix).  It takes effort to focus. It takes relationships.  It takes community.  It takes the opposite of lazy.

    Solution:  I am going to take a class.  A writing class.  My boss is teaching the class.  Some of my students may be in the class.  I will be intimidated, maybe, initially; but, I will knock “lazy” on her butt and wave goodbye to “hesitation.” I will write a poem, or two, maybe even three.

    I may be the only 68 year old writer in the class, no denying it; but, I’ve always believed in life-long learning-I’ve just been too “lazy” to practice it.

    Sherry Lee

    May 1, 2015


    Share your comments regarding “writer’s hesitation.”


  • READING SEPTEMBER 24, 2014 at Birchbark Books

    Date: 2014.09.08 | Category: Assignments, LOVE IMAGINED | Response: 0

    The Birchbark Books Reading Series continues its 6th season of readings on Wednesday, September 24 at 7:00 p.m. Reading will be Satish P. Jayaraj, Sherrie Fernandez-Williams, Sherry Quan Lee, and Eric Hove.

    Curated by Michael Kiesow Moore and Ardie Medina, the Birchbark Books Reading Series features new, emerging, and established writers quarterly September through May.

    Artist bios:

    A perpetual immigrant, Indian writer Satish P. Jayaraj now calls Minnesota home. Though not used to the inhumane winters, the love by and of the writing community of the Twin Cities quickly won him over. Satish enjoys writing in multiple creative genres. He is working on his second fantasy novel, a follow up to the e-published Secret Of the Naga Dragons. For this evening he will proudly present some of his poetry.

    Sherrie Fernandez-Williams holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Hamline University and is a recipient of an Artist Initiative Award through the Minnesota State Arts Board, a SASE/Jerome Award through Intermedia Arts, and the Jones’ Commission Award through the Playwrights’ Center. She was a selected participant in the Loft Mentor Series for Creative Nonfiction, and the Givens Black Writers Collaborative. Her work has been published in various literary magazines and anthologies. Sherrie’s debut memoir, Soft was published by North Star Press (2014). Fernandez-Williams discovered her need for words in Brooklyn, NY where she was born and raised, but “grew up” as a writer in the Twin Cities.

    Sherry Quan Lee
    (MFA in Creative Writing, University of Minnesota) is a Community Instructor at Metropolitan State University, and has taught classes and mentored writers at Intermedia Arts and the Loft Literary Center; co-taught A Gathering of Storytellers for the University of Minnesota Women of Color Organization (UWOC), Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center (UROC), a partnership between the University of Minnesota and North Minneapolis, and for other community organizations state wide. She is the author of Chinese Blackbird, a memoir in verse, How to Write a Suicide Note: serial essays that saved a woman’s life, and hot off the press, Love Imagined: a mixed race memoir (all published by Modern History Press, Ann Arbor, Michigan).

    Eric Hove holds a Master Fine Arts from Hamline University and serves as a poetry editor for Red Bird Chapbooks. His poetry has been published in Versus Literary Journal, Sleet Magazine, and rock, paper, scissors. He is working on his first book,Closing Time in the Museum of Certainty. Eric also volunteers with the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop.

  • Responsibility of the Poet

    Date: 2014.08.22 | Category: Assignments, The Art of Writing | Response: 0

    As I ready for Fall semester, my mind is on “responsibility”- and I hope to convey to students, through the words of other writers, that we writers have a job to do, as scary and risky and lonely as that job can be.

    Interesting article, here’s an excerpt:  …a poetry that bears witness to the exigencies and horrors of the political moment in which the poem, and the poet, exists. This kind of poetry carries on speaking to the unimagined future. It sings of a spiritualized and a politicized vision, and it leaps into infinity.

    But, help, who wrote the article?

  • Social Media

    Date: 2014.07.26 | Category: Assignments | Response: 0

    How many of us have a love/hate relationship with social media?  For several months I blocked my Facebook account.  Truthfully I was a little envious of friends who travel and a little tired of friends asking for money.  Being semi-retired I have more time than money, usually.  But truth be told, I missed my Facebook friends (and I don’t really want to travel, and I give when I can  without being asked) .  I get newsworthy information, especially regarding the arts/artists/writers/books/movies/etcetera, as well as updates and photos from friends.  What I don’t fancy, I skip.

    However, now, I’ve been self-learning about other social media such as Twitter and Pinterest and making more use of my Linked-In account.  Many of my friends are utilizing all four social media outlets and I want to too!  So far it’s been fun, and educational-but I wonder if I have the stamina or the time to keep it up (as blog entry dates indicate, I’m a slacker).  I focus on two things:  writing, especially writing about mixed-race identity, and fashion, especially relating to thrift store finds!

    Here are my accounts:

    And you are here at !


    What’s your experience with social media?






Artist Statement

Sherry Quan Lee approaches writing as a community resource and as culturally based art of an ordinary everyday practical aesthetic. Lee is a Community Instructor at Metropolitan State University (Intro to Creative Writing, Advanced Creative Writing), and has taught at Intermedia Arts, and the Loft Literary Center. She is the author of A Little Mixed Up, Guild Press, 1982 (second printing), Chinese Blackbird, a memoir in verse, published 2002 by the Asian American Renaissance, republished 2008 by Loving Healing Press, and How to Write a Suicide Note: serial essays that saved a woman’s life, Loving Healing Press, 2008.








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