19 October 2012 - Suni Paz - Special Guest


*


Quote of the day:

"Our greatest battles are that with our own minds."


Jameson Frank


*



Suni Paz


- Special Guest


G'day guys,


Today we are in great company. I feature an amazing woman who has many talents - SUNI PAZ - singer, songwriter, poet, educator, author and presenter, has devoted her life to children and their families. She has thrilled worldwide audiences of all ages on stage, television and radio with her the songs she sings accompanied on guitar, charango and percussive instruments. Born in Argentina, in 1965 she moved to the United States with her children. She received a Master’s degree at Rutgers University in Hispano American Literature, a Fulbright grant, a Parent’s Choice Award through Smithsonian Folkways and The Magic Penny Award from the Children’s Music Network, among others. She taught High School in New York for thirteen years. Suni is a Smithsonian Folkways recording artist with ten albums released and now part of their Board of Directors. Her latest CD is Bandera Mía (Flag of Mine), an album that paints a melodious musical mosaic of favorite Argentine folk songs.

*


*


Suni Paz has published more than 300 songs, and has collaborated extensively with award winning poets, writers Alma Flor Ada and Isabel Campoy (Del Sol Books). In 2007, Suni published her memoirs in Spanish Destellos y Sombras and in English, Sparkles and Shadows. She contributed five poems to a book entitled La inefable locura de ser poeta. Other Suni’s stories were published in three Anthologies: Terry Laszlo Gopadze’s, The Spirit of a Woman, Intimate Stories to Empower and Inspire; Kate Farrell’s Wisdom Has a Voice: Every Daughter’s Memories of Mother and Magdalena Gómez with María Luisa Arroyo’s, Bullying: Replies, Rebuttals, Confessions and Catharsis. Suni believes in the art and power of music, poems and lyrics to change, inspire and heal.

Wow, welcome, Suni Paz. Tell us how it all happened ...

TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOUR WRITING JOURNEY.


 At seven years old, at my aunt’s request -she was a laureate poet/writer- I became a “critic” of her writings. At fourteen, I started writing songs with my own lyrics and I’m still doing it. Then I won a writing contest in Chile that secured me a job with Mc Cann Erickson-Chile and I began writing ads and columns. For the same firm, I started writing jingles. All of the above was my learning turf. Writing helped me make a living to support my two children and gave me a perspective on my life.


*



*


WERE YOU A GOOD READER AS A KID?


 I was raised in a household with walls covered with bookcases, so I read voraciously and still do. I’m very eclectic in my tastes though. I love short stories and novels but when I start reading them I can’t stop. I may read the whole night through. I like to read from Tony Morrison and Lama Surya Das to the most famous Latin American political writers and poets.


 WHEN AND HOW DID YOU BECOME A WRITER?


 I began writing in short story form, first in Spanish and then in English. Being from Argentina, at the beginning I only wrote in Spanish. I encouraged myself to think and write in English and I ended up with two finished books: Destellos y Sombras written in Spanish and Sparkles and Shadows in English. This was an incredible accomplishment for me. Although I still mess up my “in” and “on.”


 WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?


 I have begun writing my stories of what happened to us in Chile, my events and discoveries as a teacher in USA (New York and California) and my anecdotes about Spain where I taught for three summers. I’m also writing some stories on Argentina that I forgot to include in my memoirs.


*



*


WHAT INSPIRES YOU?


 I find inspiration in my interchange with students, teachers, other writers and life itself. I try to see and listen.


 WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST JOY IN WRITING?


 Writing has allowed me to see my life in perspective: the good, the bad and the ugly and understand the people that raised me. Through my writing I also was able to honor those who helped me along the way and made my journey easier.


 WHAT’S THE GREATEST COMPLIMENT YOU EVER RECEIVED FROM A READER?


 The greatest compliment I received came from a family member. This girl called me to thank me for having opened for her a whole new chapter in her life. Through my books, she learned about her family, her heritage and herself. She now understood her mother, which helped improve their relationship. That made my memoirs worthwhile.


*



*


WRITERS ARE SOMETIMES INFLUENCED BY THINGS THAT HAPPEN IN THEIR OWN LIVES. ARE YOU?


 After suffering the loss of my husband very early, in Chile, I came to the United States where I had great opportunities opened up for me and a very intense, very rich life of songwriting, singing, studying, getting degrees and teaching while raising my boys. In living, I collected many anecdotes that I wanted to share with my family and the world. I also wanted my children to know about what family they came from (mine was exceptionably artistic and creative) and understand their roots.


 HOW MANY BOOKS HAVE YOU PUBLISHED?


 I am a self-published new writer who writes in two languages. I’m proud to say that three of my other stories were selected to be published in three different Anthologies Terry Laszlo Gopadze’s, The Spirit of a Woman, Intimate Stories to Empower and Inspire; Kate Farrell’s Wisdom Has a Voice: Every Daughter’s Memories of Mother and Magdalena Gómez with María Luisa Arroyo’s, Bullying: Replies, Rebuttals, Confessions and Catharsis. This is to me a source of happiness.


*


*


HAVE YOU WON ANY PRIZES OR AWARDS?


 I have not received awards for my writing but many for my songwriting. I’m not after prizes per se, but yes I would love to know that more people are reading my stories or listening to my songs. I have things to say that might inspire them, help them live, see at life in other ways.


 DID YOU HAVE YOUR BOOK / BOOKS PROFESSIONALLY EDITED BEFORE PUBLICATION?


 Oh, yes. I need editing. I know that. English is not my first language.


*



*


WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?


 I will keep writing my new memoirs but I’m also adapting into Spanish songs from the Civil Rights Movement which I hope I will put on a CD since the 50th Anniversary is near. I’m also preparing my November 10 Los Angeles concert with other two women (folk, tango and pop.) Busy times...


Contact points for Suni Paz:


*


www.SuniPaz.com

*


www.DelSolBooks.com

*


Folkwayshttp://www.folkways.si.edu/searchresults.aspx?sPhrase=suni&sType='phrase'

*


Rhapsody: http://www.rhapsody.com/suni-paz/bandera-mia-songs-of-argentina

*



*


Clancy's comment: Many thanks, Suni Paz. It's been a pleasure to have you with us. Keep going. The world needs you. Love ya work - CT!


I'm ...



*