Interview with Susan Freire-Korn

Soul sistersI read Susan’s book, Soul Sisters, which made me understand where her amazing organization skills came from!

Tell us about yourself.

I am a retired Kaiser Permanente medical program senior consultant for administration.I am also a professional keynote speaker, educational instructor, and facilitator who has inspired many to change their lives for the better. I has received the Kaiser Permanente R.J. Erickson Diversity Achievement Group Awards for “The Labor Management Partnership Bilingual Employee Program” for Northern California, and “The Silent Witness Display in Northern California Region” for preventing domestic violence in my workplace. I earned a BS and MS in Health Services Administration from St. Mary’s College in Moraga, California.

What inspired you to start writing?

What inspired me to write was I had much to tell about my life of domestic violence and child abuse. All my adult life I had been carrying all that pain, shame, and suffering with me. It was time to stop carrying that burden and write it on paper so it would not be forgotten or lost with me. Therefore, as a survivor I was ready to reclaim my life and become the master of my own destiny. The other very important reason was when my Grandchildren were of age I wanted to leave them my life story in writing so if ever they should have doubts, troubles, and pain in their own lives they could read Grandma’s life story and learn about determination, perseverance, and belief in self to get you through life ‘s journey.

My first book, “The Brown Rabbit…Let the truth be told,” was published in 2008 by iUniverse under the pen name of Kate Virginia for legal reasons.

 I know your career has influenced a lot of your work, but what else has influenced you?

For me the easiest thing to write about is what you know in life to be true, and having the ability and willingness to want to share that knowledge with others who can either benefit from reading what you know and/or it can change their life for the better. Therefore, writing about domestic violence, learning to be the best in your career, and having the knowledge, understanding for human kindness and cultural sensitivity have all been areas of interests to me. I have based my career on professionalism, leadership development, team building, cultural diversity, and human kindness and have written about these topics in my books.

 How do you approach the art of writing?

I usually write when the feeling moves me into a topic I want others to know about or experience. The first time I saw my property in Cool, CA., I walked towards the pond and the trees surrounding the areas and captured all the beautiful scenery and the first thing I thought about was, yes, this is the perfect place to write my book. The beauty of the area inspired me to write my life story in a beautiful safe place in which I could call my very own. Write when your heart and head tell you it is a good time to write. It can be four in the morning and you cannot sleep or it can be on an airplane and something moves you to find a pen and paper to start writing. I love my office it has a small library with my computer surrounded by all those books of knowledge help me jump start my inspiration and motivates me to write.

What do you read for pleasure?

Probably no secret with a truth writer I love to read biographies, history, and medical science topics. I like to read about facts, and results of research studies. I also enjoy books on traveling to different lands in order to learn about their peoples cultures, beliefs, and values.

 You write non-fiction. Tell us about that choice? Are you considering fiction in the future? Another Non-fiction?

Writing comes easier to me if I write about the truth about my experiences, knowledge, or people I meet. Non-fiction I believe requires a certain amount of talent to keep a story line, create characters and to keep everything straight with an interesting topic. I guess I lack that level of creativity. However, after being exposed to Gold Country Writers I’m been thinking about sometime trying my hand at it. I enjoy learning from authors who write fiction and they’re writing style. I, do, write poetry when the feeling moves me. I plan to write more short stories mostly about loved ones and what happiness they bring into my life. I would very much like to write a book about Mental Illness and how it impacts the whole family. This will be a scientific research book with personal stories, areas of forgiveness, how to cope, and to let love, and understanding help the process of dealing with someone in the family who has mental illness. I believe the time frame to write this book will be approximately 3-5 years.

 Upcoming Events?

By joining The Placer Arts and GCW I plan to participate in their upcoming events in 2014.

 Final words of Wisdom?

If you have the desire to write JUST DO IT. Do not get caught up on ”it is not good enough,” “no one will be interested,” or “where do I start and how will I know when I’m finished” because these questions just stand in the way of your creativeness. Write what you have a passion for it will all come together in the end. Join a writing club or attending a writing conference will expand your knowledge and wisdom on learning from others.

 Share with others what you do now.

Currently, I’m a Mentor with Kaiser Permanente Professional Mentorship Program. I’m also a reviewer for Kaiser Permanente Journal magazine on topics which relate to the medical field.I enjoy working with young people and helping them reach their fullest potential in life. Recently, visited an English Class in Delta College and shared my experience of writing, “ Soul Sisters, Come onto my House” a book about cultural sensitivity and human kindness.




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