Sunday, April 05, 2020

Jasminne Mendez - Dominicana Poderosa

Photo by Michael Leonard

Her Story

Born from immigrant parents of the Dominican Republic, Jasminne Mendez was blessed to learn both English and Spanish at a very early age. She has used these skills to her advantage throughout her life by performing, reading and writing poetry, short stories and plays in both languages.

She attended the University of Houston from 2002 -2007 where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction. While at the University of Houston she played leading roles in various plays including A Raisin in the Sun, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf, and Yerma. She also spent many of those early years writing and performing poetry in local venues around the Houston area.

In 2007 her work was transferred from the stage to the printed page when her creative non-fiction piece, The China Cabinet was published in the anthology, Windows into My World: Latino Youth Write Their Lives by Arte Publico Press. Since then, she has been published by or has forthcoming publications with, Crab Creek Review, The Acentos Review, Label Me Latino/a, Gulf Coast Magazine, The Texas Review, La Galeria Magazine, The Best of CutThroat: A Journal of the Arts, Telling Our Stories Press, University of Chester, Whispering Angel Books, Floricanto Press and others.

As a performance poet, she has performed for the Mexican American Studies department at both the University of Houston central campus and the University of Houston Clearlake Campus. She has performed at other prestigious venues around Houston including Talento Bilingue de Houston, MECA, Houston Community College(HCC), the Holocaust Museum, the Alley Theatre and the Museum of Fine Arts (MFAH).

In 2009 she had the privilege of opening for award-winning author Sandra Cisneros at Rice University for over 500 audience members.  In the past, she has also had the privilege of sharing the stage with notable artists and writers, Amalia Ortiz, Taylor Mali, and Dagoberto Gilb. Recently she was awarded Best Houston Performer of the Year by RAW: Houston and her first multi-genre memoir Island of Dreams received first place for Best Young Adult Latino Focused Book by the International Latino Book Awards. In spring 2016, her essay El Corte  was awarded Honorable Mention for the Barry Lopez Creative Non-Fiction Prize through CutThroat: A Journal of The Arts, and in the fall of 2016 her collection of essays Interruptions & Detours was a semi-finalist for the Rose Metal Press Essay Chapbook Prize.
She is a Canto Mundo Fellow, a VONA Alumni, a Macondo Fellow and a current MFA creative writing candidate at the Rainier Writing Workshop at Pacific Lutheran University. Her second book, Night-Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays & Poems was published by Arte Public Press in April 2018.

An interview and discussion of the book 
with Daniel Chacón  - here

Un tintero es la fuente del escritor.

 Jasminne is a major collaborator in this endeavor.

The word tintero is Spanish for inkwell, a old school container once used to house the ink for a pen.  The image was selected as a way to show that this project, this movement is about providing resources for the writer. .

Founded by poet Lupe Méndez, Tintero Projects / Proyectos Tintero aims to promote writing & reading opportunities for emerging Latinx poets and writers in the Houston – Galveston/Gulf Coast Region.  Originally founded as just “Tintero Readings”, Méndez hopes to reestablish a nurturing aspect to the every growing Latino writing community, with Houston as its main hub.

Tintero Projects is the emerging writer’s arm of Nuestra Palabra: Latino Writers Having Their Say, focusing on creating workshop, performance and community opportunities in Spanish, English, Spanglish, Indigenous Languages and Portuguese. Tintero Projects is dedicated to helping create a platform for Latinx writers and Writers of Color.

Work and write with Jasminne

You can  craft creative nonfiction with Jasminne at the helm at this upcoming. workshop - register via this link.


Course #2020-102
THURSDAYSStarting April 166:30 pm–8:30 pmrunning 6 weeks
Cost: $240

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