Marie Myung-Ok Lee | K-Pod | Ep. 29

Marie Myung-Ok Lee is the author of the acclaimed novel The Evening Hero, a darkly comic story about a Korean American doctor in rural Minnesota facing retirement and the resurgence of long-buried secrets from his past. A professor of creative writing at Columbia, Marie grew up in the rural town of Hibbing, MN, in a community very much like the one in her novel, where her father was the area’s only anesthesiologist. In a lively conversation with Juliana and Catherine at her home on the Upper West Side, Marie shares stories about her parents (who were among the earliest Korean immigrants to the States, arriving in 1953) and their determination to raise their four children to be as assimilated as possible, not even revealing their Korean names. Juliana and Catherine hear about Marie's short-lived days as a pre-med student at Brown, her post-grad years at Goldman Sachs while working on her first book (the YA novel Finding My Voice) and the origins of the influential Asian American Writers’ Workshop, which she co-founded with three friends at a downtown diner 31 years ago. They also discuss Marie’s lively social media profile and her now-famous advocacy for cannabis treatment to treat severe autism, inspired by her son, Jason. Follow Marie Myung-Ok Lee on Instagram CreditsCo-host, Producer, Photographer: Juliana Sohn  Co-host, Producer, Editor: Catherine Hong Audio Engineer: AJ Valente Executive Producer: HJ Lee Production Coordinator: Young Sun Production Assistant: Deborah Baik

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K-Pod, a production of, is a series dedicated to the stories of Korean Americans in arts and culture. Hosts Catherine Hong and Juliana Sohn talk to artists, writers, designers, directors, musicians, chefs and other creatives about their work, their lives, and how they came to forge their careers.