Sunday, April 19, 2009

How to win friends and influence people?

A skill that most people who wants to excel in : Communications. When you're in a party where you don't know many and know just a few you'll think I'm here to make friends, build up a network. In that room filled with people, you observe, you search for people to approach or you search for your regular gang. You can see that are people who stand just by the drinks table or the snacks table, some people mingle and have fun, some talking, some quiet.

You'll notice there are some people who can just keep talking and grasp everyone's attention. That's a skill that everyone wants, good communication skills. There are some people who are born with it, some who learn and build it up through the years. You will think how they do it, how you would love to have that skill.

It's simple, pick a book read it, understand it and practice it. How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie. This book has been around for many years, since 1936.

It is Dale's dream to write motivational books and this is one of it. This book teaches techniques that are simple to understand. It also let me realise that the common thoughts of everyone including myself. One of the things highlighted in the book was people always put themselves first and in a conversation they like to talk about themselves. So whenever you want to approach someone always start with asking about them, their interest, their work, life and when they're done they will give you the attention. Always always be genuinely interested in what the other person say as insincerity makes people dislike you.

The writer uses good examples of his principles for this topic. Famous people's stories were mentioned such as Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and also his own experience. Another good principle is "Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves". There are many more that I shall not mention as it is best to read it yourself. You either buy it, borrow it from a friend and find it in a library. It's definitely good help for yourself.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Graveyard Book

Ever wondered how it would be to live in a graveyard?? I didn't because I wouldn't want to be haunted or chased by ghost. You'll receive no help at all, nobody will save you, it's only when people visits. But nobody visits at night, you can't see in the night, there aren't lights there. If you can't experience it, you can imagine it, you can read about it: The Graveyard Book written by Neil Gaiman.

Neil Gaiman writes the most unique fantasy stories and two has been made into motion pictures, Coraline (animated) and Star dust. This book is one of the new edition into the family. The story begins with a climax where the bad guy is committing a crime, the last victim a toddler. The little toddler was not found in his crib, the villain kept his cool, searched the place. When he could not find him, panic starts to hit him, where could the toddler be?

The little toddler being an adventerous child wanders out of the house and walks up the hill and ends up at a graveyard. This is where the stories begins, the ghosts of the graveyard felt the need to protect the child so they hid him while the villain tried to find him here. Of course he failed, if not we won't have a story to read won't we?? They raised him up, and we have chapters highlighted his adventures in the graveyard. A definite unique storyline, unique characters and an ending you'll think you'll want.

There's a climax in every chapter, an excitement waiting for you. The boy who lives in the graveyard, grew up there, how he survived? I praise Neil for being unique and special, coming out with stories that none has thought of, maybe I don't read enough but this is definitely my first encounter on a story about a boy and a graveyard.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Taking one step forward

Marley and me, Confessions of a Shopaholic, and Inkheart, all these movies have one thing that I feel strongly about: novel, writing and journalism. Deep down, somewhere hidden I have always wanted to be a writer. When I was 16 I had tuition for English and I look forward to it every week. The teacher gave the class a title every week and we were required to produce introductions and sometimes a full essay. I eagerly wait for my essay to return to me after being marked as I was excited with what the teacher would comment.

Since young I love to read, it started with Enid Blyton, moved on to Sweet Valley Series, Sabrina the teenage witch, Sherlock Holmes, Princess Diaries, and many more fantasy and chic flicks. I love being captured in the writer's fantasy, imaginations and their expressions. I want to write because I want to give the same feeling I get from reading, I want readers to find their fantasy, their dreams, a world within them.

Writing a novel is definitely not easy and it takes time. To realise my dream, I went to the book store to find help, to hope to improve my writing techniques from experts, to make an idea into a novel. It's still a long road ahead, so I'm taking my first step now. I will try to write one entry a week on my blog on anything that comes to my mind. Please feel free to comment on my writing, I appreciate all the help I can get.
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