Q&A With Tommy Schnurmacher

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Q&A With Tommy Schnurmacher

Tonight I have the honor of doing a Q&A with author Tommy Schnurmacher. Tommy Schnurmacher is the author of the memoir Make Up Tips from Auschwitz: How Vanity Saved My Mother’s Life. 


Tommy I have to say your mother is a survivor and she’d be proud of you! 


Q: Tommy was it your personal choice to write your mothers story, or was it your mothers request to write it? 


A:It was my choice to write the memoir. Why? Because everyone at the radio station where I worked said they were most amused by the many stories of my family as we arrived as refugees from Hungary. One of these days, Tommy, you are going to have to write a book. One of those days came and I wrote the book. I feel it shows triumph over adversity and it also demonstrates the power of humor to overcome past trauma and move onward and upward. 


Q: What advice do you give to anyone wanting to write a memoir about their lives or about someone else’s especially something as vital and important as something like the Holocaust or another major event in history?


A: My advice to any writer is simple.Stop trying to appear to be a writer as you write. Instead write the way you speak. It’s easier and it’s natural. Readers will feel that they are listening to you as you tell your story. Write it as if you were chatting with a close friend. 


Q: What do you hope readers will get out of your memoir about your mother? 


A: I hope they will enjoy stories that will make them laugh out loud and perhaps, occasionally reach for a Kleenex to dry a tear or two. It will aalso introduce them to an eccentric, entertaining, Hungarian-accented lady who was truly one in a million.   


Q: If you’re writing a new novel now, is it another memoir or are you writing fiction this time around? 


A: I will be writing another memoir that will focus more on my career as a journalist. My first memoir told the story of me babysitting for John Lennon and Yoko Ono for eight days and having Meryl Streep step on my toes at the Beverly Hills Hotel. The second memoir will detail my travel tips to places like New York City, Budapest, Rome and Venice.