CCI Alumna Kallayah Henderson Releases New Poetry Book

Last year, College of Communication and Information alumna Kallayah Henderson published her first book, Nature Inspires under her pen name Lee Sunshine. Henderson shared that she’s been writing poetry since she was eight years old and began writing the poems that eventually became Nature Inspires soon after college. 

She graduated from Florida State in 2020 with a degree in Information, Communication, and Technology. That summer, she created the name Lee Sunshine. She explained, “I gave myself the name because I wanted to attach all of my creations to a name that I also created for myself. Up until that point, if you looked me up online… all that came up were things related to my academic achievements, going by Lee Sunshine was my way of making a new lane for myself outside of all the work I’d done in my academic career.”

Henderson began her first book after a friend of her’s told her about a poetry writing challenge by Bookleaf Publishing which would help her self-publish her poems in a book if she compiled 20 poems in a month. Henderson shared, “Ultimately I knew I’d write books someday so it felt like a good time to start making that a reality! She was also able to illustrate the book’s cover art. “Pairing my art with my writing has been a goal of mine and going into this year I will be doing a lot of illustration work as a result of this experience,” she explained.

Henderson added, “I’d also like to thank Dr. Yolanda Rankin, who I learned a lot from during my time at FSU. My time spent as her research assistant helped prepare me for the rigor involved in writing my own body of work. Be on the lookout for more books from me, I am currently writing Nature Inspires Volume 2: Poems and Drawings by Lee Sunshine. Also, If you’d like to hear me recite some of the poetry from Nature Inspires check out You Too Are A Lovelee Being on Spotify and Instagram!”

Purchase Nature Inspires here

To see more of Kallayah’s work, visit her website here