hülya n. yılmaz [sic] was born and raised in Turkey. After completing her Master’s Degree in Germanic Languages and Literatures at Hacettepe University in Ankara, she has moved to the US in pursuit of her doctoral studies. While raising a family, so to speak, she has completed her Ph.D. at The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in the same area of specialization. However, her dissertation involved a comparative study; for, her focus was on the influence of the 13th and 14th century mystical poetry of the Islamic Orient on the 19th and 20th century mainstream German literature. She thus has undergone a thorough analysis of the Sufi ghazals of Rumi and Hafis within the context of their impact on German-speaking writers as far as form, content and symbolism. Her voluminous book on the same topic was published in German under the title of Das Ghasel des islamischen Orients in der deutschen Dichtung.
For the following 40+ years, then, hülya has dedicated herself to academia. She taught a large variety of courses, including those she had designed herself, doing some scholarly work alongside. Her position at the university called for a strong concentration on teaching. She was still able to attend numerous national and international conferences where she presented her academic work. The feedback she received at those conferences enabled her to gain a vital insight into the advancement possibilities of her teaching career. She intensively and diligently compiled materials to enrich her students’ learning journeys. At the same time, her research projects expanded beyond that with which she had been mostly familiar when her field-specific expertise was concerned. She was no longer doing the work for German Literatures and Languages, but rather had attained a considerable amount of knowledge with regard to comparative literature studies. As a result, she was pursued to teach multi-disciplinary seminars for the Comparative Literature Studies Department at Penn State – the university from where she retired in 2018. Each of her curricula consisted of literary traditions within the Islamic context. Initially, her course texts only included the selected literary work by Muslim women. Soon, however, she began to teach with gender-neutral reading materials.
Before her retirement, hülya had started working as a freelance editor. In an attempt to honor her second lifelong passion – creative writing, she has authored three books while still teaching full-time: Trance, An Aegean Breeze of Peace (co-authored), and Aflame. Memoirs in Verse. The first one is a multi-linguistic collection of poems in which she offers her own translations of her Turkish and German poetry. The other two entail poems in English. After her retirement, she continued to provide authors with her freelance editing work, but on a full-time basis. She considers herself to be fortunate to have in her editorial record a large number of writers with whom she has collaborated toward their debut books (poetry and prose) as well as throughout their 2nd, 3rd or 4th professional writing endeavors. Along the way, she has also published more books of her own: this and that . . . a hodgepodge of hülya’s poetry; Canlarım, My Lifeblood (poetry in Turkish and English, private edition), and Letter-Poems from a Beloved (prose poetry). For all of them, her publishing company was (and continues to be) Inner Child Press International, Ltd. The thirst she has for creative writing is also being sated through her monthly contributions of three poems to The Year of the Poet, an international anthology which is now in its 7th consecutive year. That collection is also a product of the above-identified publishing enterprise.
The literary language of hülya’s first preference is English, which is the second foreign language she acquired; Turkish, her mother tongue takes the second position. As for German – the first foreign language of her acquisition and the core element of her academic career, it comes in last.
hülya finds it vital for everyone to understand a deeper sense of self. She writes creatively to attain and nourish a more comprehensive understanding of our humanity.
Don’t just exist. Live. ~ hny, 2016
~ All books of hülya n. yılmaz are available either at
http://www.innerchildpress.com/h%C3%BClya-n-yilmaz.php or Amazon.com, but also via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org ~