Writer

Around the time when Eric Clapton’s unplugged performance brought tears to anyone who’d lost a child and Toni Braxton attracted the attention of Babyface with her sad love songs, Julián Esteban Torres López began to take storytelling seriously at Broad Street Elementary School in Nashua, New Hampshire.  It was there he first gained recognition for writing when he took home the Best Single and Best Songwriting awards in his 6th grade’s rendition of the 1993 Grammys.  The experience taught him the power of the spoken word, as he serenaded M.C. Jessica D. with his award-winning hit, “Loneliness,” set to a Boyz II Men melody.

He’s since lost his elementary school little boy charm and grown out of his falsetto, but has continued to develop his writing.   As an adult, Julián has expanded his repertoire, publishing essays, poetry, fiction, newspaper articles, creative nonfiction, interviews, and memoirs along the way.

Find below a sample of future, current, and past publications and recognitions.

FORTHCOMING

Julián has another book coming out in 2018—a collection of articles he wrote as an academic and journalist reporting on Colombia between 2009 and 2013.

  • Reporting on Colombia: Essays on Colombia’s History, Culture, Peoples, and Armed Conflict, 2018.

CURRENT

Most recently, Julián published interviews, creative nonfiction, poetry, flash fiction, and a long-form philosophy essay on humanism and revolutionary violence.

       

PREVIOUS

Poetry

Julián published poetry in several journals, among them Aegis, Channillo, Bleach MagazineGentle Strength QuarterlyThe WRIToracleColombia Reports, and the anthology Shattering Silence: Reclaiming the Voice of Social Awareness through Poetry and Art.

Spoken Word

Julián was a spoken word artist from 2000 to 2010, was part of the University of New Hampshire Slam Poetry Team in 2003, and also recorded spoken word pieces in two audio anthologies and one debut album.

  • Harmony Conspiracy: A Poet’s Proposal, three tracks included in spoken word anthology, produced by The Artists’ Circle, 2003.
  • Dirty Laundry: The WRIToracle Poets, three tracks included in spoken word anthology, produced by TheWrit, 2007.
  • Sfumato: A Decade of Spoken Word, twenty tracks, self-produced, 2011.

He recently mixed (with instruments and soundscapes) a surrealist piece called “The Wind” he originally recorded during a live 2003 performance in Durham, New Hampshire.

Columns

Julián had columns in Little Colombia Observationist (blog on observations about daily life in Colombia), Heavy Words (online journal for informative, analytical, and creative columns on culture, politics, ethics, current events, and the arts), and Colombia Reports (Colombia’s largest and most reliable news source in English).  He published pieces on culture, politics, ethics, war, conflict resolution, current events, history, and the arts. Find below a selection of articles.

Essays

  • “Curious vs. Certain Dispositions in Dialogue: Roadblocks and Pathways Toward Understanding and Clarity,” The Dialectic, University of New Hampshire Philosophy Journal, April 2004.
  • “Art is Indefinable,” First Place, Rudy Dusek Essay Prize in Philosophy of Art, University of New Hampshire, 2001-2002.
  • “Knowledge of Self-Innocence,” Take 1, Vol. 8, Rivier College’s Department of English and Communication Journal of Outstanding Freshmen Essays, Spring 2000.

Short Stories

  • “Last Words,” Shortlisted Finalist, Okanagan Short Story Contest, University of British Columbia Okanagan, 2009.
    • Short story manuscript selected (1 of 6 UBC Okanagan students/community) for one-on-one critique with Writer-in-Residence, Fred Stenson (a Giller Pirze finalist), 2009.

Captions

  • From August 2013 through November 2015, Julián wrote 1000+ legend captions for historical photos that were used in nearly 150 graphically-designed community murals throughout the U.S., for Wells Fargo’s Community Mural Program.
    • The program’s mission is to create unique custom-designed historical artwork that respects the community’s legacy, celebrates its diversity, and honors the past upon which the community was founded.
    • Julián worked with historical societies (local, county, state, and national), libraries, and archives to (a) discover the stories that represented each specific community’s legacy, and (b) to be able to write the captions.
    • Find a sample below of a legend with captions and design (by Anne Marie Lapitan) for a mural that commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act.  The mural and legend depict the struggles and triumphs in Montgomery on the road to racial equality, bringing pivotal moments in the Civil Rights Movement to life.

Legend_Montgomery_Civil-Rights-Mural

Montgomery, Alabama, Civil Rights Movement mural, designed by Anne Marie Lapitan. Research, image acquisition, and legend captions by Julián Esteban Torres López.

Interviews

Matthew Meyer
  • w/ illustrator, folklorist, and author Matthew Meyer, “The Night Parade of One Hundred Demons: A Field Guide to Japanese Yokai,” Surgically Enhanced Mannequin, April 2012.
The Boqui-Toquis
Heidi Harris
  • w/ self-taught musician and vocalist Heidi Harris, “The Tall Tall Tales of Heidi Harris,” La CaSSaDaGa, October 2011.
Calavera y la Popular Independiente
  • w/ fun, folkloric, Colombian-fusion band Calavera y la Popular Independiente, Little Colombia Observationist, July 2011.
Missy MacQuarrie
  • w/ musician, singer, songwriter Miss Johnson, “Sound to Keep,” The WRIToracle Journal and Review, 2005.  (She now goes by Missy MacQuarrie.)
Liz Parmalee
  • Director of short film documentary on singer-songwriter Liz Parmalee, Remember the Tall Grass,  produced by Wet Paint Café, Durham, New Hampshire, 2003.