Budding writer talks ‘Chips and Sausage’ and expressing his Irish experience through words
2018-01-15 17:10:00 -

By Chinedu Onyejelem

'Although Irish,  Daniel Zuchowski does not like talking about his nationality but is happy to be understood as a world citizen, moving from one county to another.

Now living in Barcelona, the English-language consultant and trainer previously lived in Ireland for eight years, giving him the inspiration for his book 'Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders', which will have a public launch at Marsh’s Library in Dublin on Friday 26 January.

“It’s doing well,” he says of the book, which came out before Christmas. “We’re promoting it quite intensively by taking it around the world and meeting people. We’ve already had book events and author meetings in England, France, Ireland, Poland, Spain and Uganda.

“It’s been a great pleasure to meet and talk to people in different countries. I like to make those events interactive, where it’s not just me presenting the book or talking about Ireland, but I encourage a two-way conversation where we discuss different cultures, ways of living, habits, etc. It’s usually very interesting and lots of fun.”

Chips and Sausage is Zuchowski’s second book, after The New Dubliners, a collection of stories based on real events, which he published in 2014.

“Writing has always been the most natural way for me to express myself,” he tells Metro Éireann. “In secondary school, I got involved in print publications, and that continued up to university and beyond. And in Dublin, and in Ireland in general, I had so many incredible experiences, and I met so many interesting people from around the world, that I felt it would be interesting to share all that with others.”

Zuchowski credits his first book for the success he is currently enjoying. “It was a great experience and the book met with a lot of interest from the readers and the media. I was also invited to participate in the 2014 edition of the Dublin Book Festival, which was a great honour, though I’m not a huge fan of public readings.”

Despite his success so far, Zuchowski doesn’t think his experience as an author in Ireland is anything unique. 

“Well, it’s a positive experience,” he says. “I love Ireland, and I’m proud to have been published there, but I don’t really like to think of myself as limited to one specific country or culture, or, for that matter, about my books being published in, and just in, Ireland.

“The publisher is indeed based in Ireland, but I like to think the books are published worldwide. I now live in Barcelona, but even when I was based in Ireland, I never received any help from the Irish State, nor did my publisher, as far as I know. 

“So, in a nutshell, I guess being an author in Ireland, in Spain, or in Uganda, would look very similar for me.”

Asked for what advice he would give to other aspiring immigrant writers, Zuchowski says: “I’m not sure if, say, being active on social media can help in any tangible way, or if attending industry fairs and so-called ‘networking’ is of any use for budding writers. I wouldn’t be able to give this sort of advice. I do my thing and try hard to make the most of the very limited resources we have.

“As with everything in life, I would simply suggest that people do what they are passionate about. Don’t follow any trends, stay away from two-faced vultures, and - most importantly - work your butt off and believe in yourself. If you believe in yourself, others will too.”


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