You don’t need to like or be a pro at sewing to spice up your clothes and to re purpose your old clothes. Read this article and learn simple DIY’s and don’t forget to stay tuned to the end for an interview 🙂
3.Socks into gloves
4.DIY boot socks
5.DIY comic book shoes
Let’s get to the second part of the article
Hi Craig, I’m Yeshna and it’s nice having you here.
- Can you please tell us a bit about your book and yourself?
Made by Raffi is a picture book. It is a funny, cheerful book, based on a real-life person, that seeks to show that everyone is different and we should be tolerant of those differences. I also hope the character of RaffI is seen as not being a victim to the circumstances in the book. About me? I am an actor, song-stylist and travel Internationally singing in clubs. Now I also do interviews and blogs about the issues raised in Raffi and soon my other books about empowering children or my latest instructional graphic novel.
- How did you get the inspiration for your book?
My very close friend told about her son’s problem at school. He had always felt different from the other kids. One day he learned how to knit from one if his teachers. He really took to it and become interested in both knitting and sewing. Some of the other children made him feel uncomfortable and teased him for having what they considered a girls’ hobby. He asked his mom if he there was such a thing as a tomgirl – based on the word tomboy for young girls who are perceived as acting like boys. Of course, there hasn’t been such a word in use, yet it suggests so much. I felt it was an idea that needed to be heard. It encompasses so many issues, including the way we stereotype each other based on first impressions and the bullying of children perceived to be different.
- We all know that you are an established singer, what pushed you into writing?
What I do as a vocalist is also storytelling, so a book isn’t far from what I do. I literally sat down hours after hearing Raffi’s tale and wrote it because it was fascinating, in some ways comical, and deeply moving. The story resonated with me and my past experiences. I have heard from adults as well as children from many different cultures who also related to the idea that we all have felt different at one time. I hoped that the book would invite teachers and parents to talk with their children about tolerance, and also empower young people who feel different to stand up for themselves. Even more important is to not become a victim of these false notions of what is correct for a boy and girl. We have to help children find some self-assurance by supporting them in all their endeavors.
- What are the challenges you faced?
As a professional child actor, model and singer I was certainly out of the loop when it came to other students in my school. Theatre became so important to me I didn’t have time for other activities. My “difference” was that I sang and did theatre, and a lot of kids just didn’t know people who did that. Having great support from my family and teachers helped me move away from the times I felt “out of it,” but it wasn’t easy. Once people started see me perform, they respected my talent and perseverance and hopefully enjoyed what I was doing. So, things got easier over time. Isn’t that also most people’s experience? It takes time to find oneself and be comfortable with who we are.
- Made by Raffi is a children’s book and we would like to know why did you choose to write a children’s book?
I felt strongly that these are lessons to be learned as young as possible. People of all ages can be judgmental and reject those who are different, but if you want to change thinking you must start with young people. We see so much stereotyping and misinformation in advertising and the media. It isn’t always easy for adults to open their minds. This is why I hope “Raffi” is a good tool to help everyone.
- How was the experience and what is the message of the book?
This is my first children’s book so I had no idea of the process. For example, the publishers showed me the work of several illustrators so I could help choose. I looked at all of them and I was very happy with the lightness and clarity of Margaret’s illustrations (she was also the publishers first choice). But deciding the appearance of the book wasn’t simple. The character of Raffi was written to have long blond hair as the real Raffi did. One of the first suggestions from a distributer who bought the book was to change his hair to brown – another country asked us to shorten his hair length! My editor Janetta Otter-Barry was a great help in guiding me. I really look forward to working with her again.
7.What are your future plans and what would you like to tell the audience?
I have several projects going on: more children’s books written to empower children; a TV program for my singing and another TV show inspired by Made by Raffi. I am extremely proud that after reading Made by Raffi composers Amanda McBroom (known for Bette Midler’s Award-winning song “The Rose) and Michele Brourman (known for The Land Before Time series) wrote a song for me. It is called “Different” and linked here. I have a YouTube Channel linked here: Craig PomranzYouTube it’s free and you can listen to a lot of my music. I continue to travel singing in clubs around the world. If you look at my website: CraigPomranz.com you can see if I am in a town near you.
8 .What advice would you like to give to young writers?
Write, write write! Keep writing just to learn the discipline and find out what you have to say. Write about what you know and then expand to what you dream. Do not be afraid or anxious about what you write. Sit down and make mistakes and the answers will come to you – THAT is the exciting moment when things click. There are times when your instincts are right. You sit down write and everything is exactly as you meant it. Other times, you’ll put something on the computer and move away from it. Leave it for a day or two and come back to it fresh and see how it talks to you. It may take time, but it is ultimately so exciting when you finish a work.
Thank you so much Craig for this great interview and for sending me the book. It’s a very lively,colorful and fun book with lots of illustrations and many positive messages. Embrace our differences, don’t be shy to think out of the box and stop bullying because every child is different and special in its own way 🙂
If you have a book and want me to review it,contact me