Tuesday, October 13, 2015

My Dahlia FAQ

Since (successfully?) publishing my first book, and sold 25 copies to date.... I have been bombarded by repeated questions which I feel obliged to list and provide the answers to herewith (with Malay translations):-

Q: What is the book about?  
S: Buku ni cerita pasal apa?
A: This is a collection of 7 short stories, which is back-dropped by my home town Muar.  
J: Cerita merapu yang konon-konon berlaku kat Muor.

Q: How did you find time to write?
S: Boleh, ek, engko ada masa nak menulis? 
A: This book was compiled from a number of writings that I have done over the last decade or so in my spare time.  
J: Ada laah, masa boring-boring... Hobi lah katakan. Tapi, lama lah jugak.. sepuloh tahun ada kot.

Q: Where did you get your inspirations from? (Actually no one asked me this but I wished they did)  
S: Mana engko dapat idea cerita-cerita ni?
A: All of the stories have something to do with stories I heard when I was growing up in Muar. We hear rumors about our neighbor's sons or daughters or mothers or fathers, and more often than not, we make judgements and stereotype people without really knowing the complexities of their lives. The word my editor used was SONDER. As an analogy, we see the tranquility and grace of a swan gliding over the water, not realizing her feet paddling vigorously under water.
J: Masa tengah membesar kat Muor dulu, selalu lah dengor cerita-cerita member atas member, jiran atas jiran... mengumpat sebenarnya. Kita suka mengumpat orang tapi kita tak pernah pikir mungkin ada sebab orang tu buat macam tu. Semua orang ada cerita di sebalik apa yang kita nampak.

Q: Are you sure this is just a story? (This was asked by my wife a few times, probably concerned that the character "Sam" in the first story seems similar to me). No translation here because she asked  me in her mother tongue, Singaporean. (Hehehe).
A: No dear, I swear....

OK... it's not as many as I thought... but, should any of my readers have any more questions, type them in the comment box below and I will answer them the best I can.

I still have 25 books available if anybody is interested... No price increase... RM50.

Warm regards,
Shamsuddin Jaafar