Conducted by ILA Contributing Guest Editor, Irma Kurti
ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ is a bilingual writer, novelist, critic, internationally acknowledged poet, and trilingual translator (English, Czech, Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian languages). He is the founder of PRODIGY LIFE ACADEMY and author of the PRODIGY LIFE PROGRAM, which serves as a platform for spiritual and personal development. He is also founder and Editor-in-Chief of PRODIGY PUBLISHED-USA, founder and Editor of PRODIGY MAGAZINE-USA. His poetries have been translated into: Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Swedish, Greek, Turkish, Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Hindu, Bengal, BCS (Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian), Albanian, Dutch, Hausa Nigerian, Arabic, Aleut (Alaskan), Pakistan, Bahasa-Indonesia, Kurdish, Persian, Azerbaijan, Tajik, Bulgarian, Romanian, Hebrew, Punjabi, Slovenian, Czech, Slovak, Tamil, Uzbek, Kyrgyz, Nepali, Assam, Vietnamese and more on the way.
IRMA KURTI: What was your approach to the world of literature? Do you remember what was your first poem or story about? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: I grew up as a self-learned guitar player and songwriter. I was born as the third child of a family where art played a very important role. Father, a Lawyer (musician and painter at heart), Mother, a singer, 4 years older brother, as a young writer. My choice was music. I grasped a guitar dedicated to my brother, misusing his lack of interest, and showed great enthusiasm for keeping it permanently, as my own toy. Surprisingly, I learned to play in a very short time. I started making my own songs and lyrics. Through many years of developing my playing skills, lyrics were always at the second place of my interest, so, for a long-time, words just served as a "background for music", rather than a story telling tool. I never strive to be a poet or a writer, preferably a player or a singer. Yes, I remember very well, my first poem I wrote when I was nine years old. I proudly read it to my big sister:
"Oh, sublime sky, and my little star at night that shine, I have my love, keep that secret from anyone..."
My sister's enthusiastic support was a point of reference for my future high-sky self-confidence.
IRMA KURTI: Why did you decide to leave your country? Was it a difficult decision? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: I left Sarajevo and my country in 1992, as the war started in ex-Yugoslavia. It was a hard decision, where to move! I spent two years in Wien, Austria, then I moved to Prague, Czech Republic, where I spent 20 years (half of that time in Florence, Italy for my business). As I left my home country, my song-writing journey turned into a prose-writing adventure. That's where my three novel books came from, and I'm on my way to translate them and publish nowadays.
IRMA KURTI: How does your country of origin affect your writings, and what place do your childhood memories occupy in them?
ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: My country of origin stood as a mirror of my inner world, full of joy, happiness, and excitement, reflected in my songs, music and poems. Educational journey spiced with inspiring flashes of growing in harmony pictures...emotional memory banks of the past...Deep emotional infliction as a spiritual call for a soul cleansing...
IRMA KURTI: You are the editor of Prodigy Magazine published in the USA. Can you tell us something more about this experience? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: As I moved 12 years ago to the USA, I passed through a big reset. Due to certain circumstances, I personally experienced, so-called Satori effect, a dramatic serious awakening process. It totally changed my life orientation, a big switch to spiritual aspects. I dedicated my time studying metaphysics, diving deeper into self-developing processes. Over several years, among other achievements, absolving a diploma of Hypnosis Motivation Institute of California, I launched my own programs of self-development, providing coaching seminars and online teachings. As a result, there were these books: "4 STEPS TEACHING OF SELF-HEALING"; "GENIUS MINDSET TRAINING"; "PRODIGY LIFE PROGRAM-PLATFORM (Vol 1, 2, and 3), as separate programs of self-growth. All published by my own publishing house, Prodigy Published. Worth mentioning is that all these programs are enhanced with a set of affirmations, autohypnosis exercises, wrapped in a very poetic form.
In June 2022, I started Prodigy Magazine, which came as a result of several years intensive networking with writers from all around the world. It helped me with opening solutions for wider promotion, and various cultural world streaming connections, with a final goal to provide a process of awakening, uplifting humanity and raising global consciousness.
IRMA KURTI: What is the role of Prodigy Academy? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: Prodigy Life Academy is a non-profit educational organization established in 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts - USA, by Dr. Goldy Brown and myself as founders. The main purpose of creating this organization was to set up a stage for educational seminars and teachings in the field of self-development. In that sense, the focus was on deepening a vision in phenomena of subconscious mind and its role in a process of human growth. The first period of activity reflected in creating and developing specific subjects, topics which correlate with all aspects of understanding human consciousness. The focus was on the mind-reprogramming process, which was particularly sealed by hypnotherapy diplomas of HMI Institute, California. Providing self-developing coaching-seminars and teachings, we, as PLA scholars, developed powerful transformational tools and theoretical platforms as a solid foundation for future deployment.
IRMA KURTI: You have published hundreds of poets all over the world. What do they have in common? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: They have one thing in common, an enormous craving for inner soul expression, which I recognize as an essential, spontaneous natural process of connection into higher consciousness and ultimately, the field of infinite oneness.
IRMA KURTI: What are some challenges that you have faced in your literary path? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: My bad experience with big USA publishers, as I recognized rigidness of their strict business-oriented schedules, putting authors in the same box with book buyers. It led me to start my own publishing house, mostly, to make my life easier, also helping other writers in reaching their creative goals. Of course, all for free!
IRMA KURTI: Do you think poetry is a powerful means to treat important topics and promote peace in the world? ** ZLATAN DEMIROVIĆ: Poetry and philosophy both came from the same, one branch. The world is shaped by them. All that happened in our history has been written before or rewritten later. We must understand that the material world is nothing but a reflection of ideas which came from the spiritual plane. The world is ruled by ideas, i.e., by some esoteric forces that follow specific ideas and cosmic laws. There is always a certain agenda on the table designed for future happenings. The language of philosophy and poetry is most likely used in esoteric circles. As poetry is a language of God, no wonder how it will be followed...
IRMA KURTI is an Albanian poet, writer, lyricist, journalist and translator and has been writing since she was a child. She is a naturalized Italian and lives in Bergamo, Italy. All her books are dedicated to the memory of her beloved parents, Hasan Kurti and Sherife Mezini, who have supported and encouraged every step of her literary path. Kurti has also won numerous literary prizes and awards in Italy and Italian Switzerland. She was awarded the Universum Donna International Prize IX Edition 2013 for Literature and received a lifetime nomination as an Ambassador of Peace by the University of Peace, Italian Switzerland. In 2020, she became the honorary president of WikiPoesia, the encyclopedia of poetry. In 2021, she was awarded the title of Liria (Freedom) by the Italian-Albanian community in Italy. In 2022, she was also nominated as the Albanian ambassador to the International Academic Award of Contemporary Literature Seneca of the Academy of Philosophical Arts and Sciences, Bari. She also won the prestigious 2023 Naji Naaman's literary prize for complete work.
Irma Kurti has published 28 books in Albanian, 24 in Italian, 15 in English, and two in French. She has written approximately 150 lyrics for adults and children. She has also translated 17 books by different authors, and all of her own books into Italian and English. Her books have been translated and published in 14 countries. Irma has recently joined ILA Magazine as a Contributing Guest Editor and will exclusively publish world interviews.