Sherwin Tjia profiled in Capital Xtra!
Capital Xtra!, Ottawa's LGBT biweekly paper, ran a profile on author and artist Sherwin Tjia on April 15, 2009. The profile, written by Lorraine Garrison, paid special attention to Tjia's poetry collection The World Is A Heartbreaker.
Read the full article at www.xtra.ca:
Punchy, postmodern, irreverent, surreal, somehow flirtatious and occasionally just plain weird, Sherwin Tjia's poetry is like the most random, unkempt, one-night stand you ever brought home from a drag show.
Self-proclaimed pop-culture addict and video game lover, Montreal's Tjia writes his bizarre and strangely charming 'pseudo-haiku' as if they were the titles to larger works -- but there is no larger work that follows.
The form is astonishingly short, consisting of three non-rhyming lines, usually no more than three words on each line, sometimes as short as three simple words, one after the other, not necessarily in a coherent order. Tjia says he writes these pseudo-haikus because it's the form that appeals to him the most and is the least constraining.
'I would write a very cool title for a poem,' he says, talking around a thick cold, nasal and wheezing, 'and the poem itself wouldn't live up to it. So I cut out the middle man.'
Tjia collected them for The World Is A Heartbreaker (2005) published by Coach House Books -- the same Toronto-based publishing house that put out the words of bpNichol, Steve McCaffery and the early works of Michael Onadaatje.
Tjia is also a painter and illustrator. He is the author of two collections of poetry and two collections of comic strips, Pedigree Girls, and Pedigree Girls Forever. This fall, The Hipless Boy, a collection of short, interconnected graphic stories will be released by Conundrum Press. He's also the quirky organizer of Slowdance Nights and Strip Spelling Bees in Montreal, Toronto and now Ottawa.
(More at www.xtra.ca)