A story been written during my sleepless nights, fairly accompanied by my SSRI drugs, a cup of frappucino and a chunk of optimism. Presenting you, my deadly trial on becoming the most random, engineering-major, truly amateur fictional writer, 'Dead Cat For Zoey'. Well, if Sophie Kinsella, Emily Cassel or Stephanie Meyer happen to read my book, please, don't flush mine into your bowl. That's too rude! Haha.
blacky dead cat

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Reading Shakespeare has dramatic effect on your brain

Would you agree that writing and reading, are both the same things? Really? How? Okay, like this. When you write, for sure, you have to read it to while jotting down the next words. That one is obvious. Okay. Move on. Do you write when you read? Not necessary right. That's it! When I said that line above, 'Do you write when you read?', you might pause yourself for nanoseconds, because you are thinking for any possibility of the question and this causes sudden peak in your brain activity! Genius~ Not me, it's you.

So, in a way, while reading, there are lots of thinking, visualizing, fantasizing and evaluating processes involved. When I read Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, I took very unusual period of time to finish the book (I know, it's 454 pages) because it's not an easy thing to figure what was going on, as you are actually reading and solving a crime scene puzzle at the same time.

Now, let's take something 'harder' than Dan Brown's. I would say, I never understand this guy named Shakespeare. Yes, he's a weirdo and to read his literature is another pain in the eyes. Shakespeare uses a linguistic technique known as functional shift that involves, for example using a noun to serve as a verb. Researchers found that this technique allows the brain to understand what a word means before it understands the function of the word within a sentence. This process causes a sudden peak in brain activity and forces the brain to work backwards in order to fully understand what Shakespeare is trying to say.

Hmm. What about that? Intriguing right? But I'm not gonna read anything from him, haha, because of the language that impossibly understandable, for me, at least. It's ancient, people~

So, this is just a quick post, telling you why you should bother reading. Yes. Read.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Your opinion matters - IMPORTANT!-

Ughhh...Life seems impeccable if there would be no problem aligning ahead. Keeping things straightforward, while Keeping Up with The Kardashians (ahaha), I should tell you that my first trial with this publishing house, ended up with an unpleasant note. So, hmmm..I don't have much words to say as obviously, as I was pretty worn out with the right gusto to write much longer. So, again, let's face it. Here it goes:

I have just read your submission. Judging from your writing. You still have a long way to go before this becomes a book. The two very basic precepts of storytelling apply.
1. Write about what you know
2. Show, don't tell. You have too much telling.
3. Avoid cliches like the plague. Your writing chokes on it.
4. Avoid preaching to your readers. Nobody, least of all young adults, like to be preached to.
5. We prefer Malaysian stories about Malaysians in Malaysia.

-An Editor from A Company-

Yeah, that was how the email sounded, though literally, it wasn't making any voice.

I would love to give out some point of rebuttals for all the five items the guy had outlined in his reply to my submission, but for now, as it approaches maghrib now, I leave it that way. I have so many things to say, but, hmmm, well, let just keep it to myself first then.

So, I would love to hear from you! My friends! Your opinion matters a lot here. How you can help is just....click on the link below, read the google doc as it displays, and tell me what do you think.

And you should know me, that I am open for suggestions and critics as I am still learning this thing. I never write anything before, but somehow, this is my new found passion. So, okay..keep it short, read the preview of my book and please, comment, on anything, you think, could improve this writing!

Thanks. I went out camping because of this. Haha. I need a rest.

Everyone is welcomed. View the document here: Dead Cat for Zoey - Sample Writing

Monday, June 7, 2010

I Am A Dead Cat Yet I am Ignorant

There are things that we love to hear, we love to do, we love to watch, but when none is benefiting ourselves, none which are under the consideration of newfound strength for your faith and principles, let just put them as 'Nonsense' then.

For a record, they are lots of nonsense things I had been doing, no matter how old am I getting now. There are things that I hear, I love, I watch and laugh at, don't really agree with any of the values that I am wishing I could gain as the aftermath of doing any of those specific behaviors above. Yeah, for instance, I hear to Katy Perry, I love her, I watch her and laugh at her spoof and practical jokes, subscribe to her Twitter and stuff, but none of it, literally and logically, benefits myself and my long-kept principles. I am ignorant.

I know, it is for fun right? It is for stress relief and so forth, right? Well, I agree at some degrees but how much fun have we given up in life when compared to the time we have paid to our faith, to our God, our beloved mom and dad, and how long the laughter would last when compared to the endless sigh, breeding tears and distasteful wound that patches on every inch of the skins of people in Gaza.....I couldn't help but holding the same tears as I am groping for more words for this post. I am ignorant.

I never know that there were and are people out there who are still not getting the jokes of 'Why the chicken crosses the road' and 'A: Have you found God B: Owh, I don't know that he is missing..Ahaha', for instances, yes, they don't know how those supposedly to be a 'just kidding' thing, as what they know everyday is swallowing their hungry bellies with sands, as for rice with bullets as chicken thighs, and if lucky, they won't be hit by sporadic rifle attacks as they tried to filter a cup of water out of a muddy water well in front of the new 'Berlin Wall' of Israel, while I was tickling my stomach with those jokes with a jar of sweet ice lemon tea on my hand next to my laptop. From that moment, I know, I had been an ignorant again.

When she died seven years ago, and when her name was provoked and mentioned brutally again and again these past days, it struck me again that she was much better than the one who claims to embrace the same religion and professed the same God, which again, is me. And though she wasn't a believer, she had the faith that she shouldn't need to mention. She had died for her ignorance of her modern world or she had died for her ignorance-less of how could she shape the landscape of the never-ending war of the middle east. No. She had died because she had to care a lot, when people like me care a less. Again, I am ignorant. Thanks Rachel Corrie, for not being me. Your soul shall be raised among the righteous ones.

I hope I am living my past, so that my tomorrow would make me a new person. A person who cares. A person who hears. A person who loves. A person...of hating ignorance.

Sorry Katy,
Azrin Z.

P/S: This is the video of Rachel when she was in 5th grade. She said "I am here because I care". And I am sorry, I wasn't there....because I was less care.

She died at 23, on 2003, when protesting an IDF (Israel Defense Forces) bulldozer from raging a building unit in Palestine...seven years ago...if you still care...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Internet Marketing and Old Town Prawn Mee and Ipoh White Coffee

Hi kitty kats and all my furry friends,

It's been a hectic week, at least, I could use some help if people want to help me blogging this post. Haha. But who else know better about my life and my venture now than myself? Right?

So, tonight, I mean last couple of hours ago (When it is still Wednesday, and now it's 1.22 a.m. Thursday-local time), I attended this free marketing seminar...erm, not really like a seminar, it's more like a one-to-one coaching class actually. This guy named Vincent Cheng, an online marketing guru, specialized in Facebook marketing, invited my uncle to his seminar. So, I just tagged myself along too, 'cause it's better to have one night off my laptop and facebook, from stalking on girls..haha..(I don't really do that...haha.) It was pretty good class, you know, at least, I can use some tips to help marketing my 'Dead Cat for Zoey' fan page.

We hit Old Town White Coffee house then, at Jaya One in PJ. I love that place so much! It's like, that Jaya One is totally making me feeling out-of-Malaysia, because of the atmosphere and the nightlife it presents.

About the book

God, I'm sorry. I am expecting 'some' delays for my book to be published. Sighing, wrinkling, frowning. I know, you are doing any of those right now. I am dealing with two publishing houses right now, one is Silverfish and another one is ZI Publications.

Silverfish is still reviewing my sample writing, as they said, it would take weeks to only reviewing the sample. I wonder how long it will take to editing, designing and printing, if the book, my book, happens to seal the deal.

ZI Publications...too, still reviewing my manuscript. But at least, I'd sent the whole chapters to them, and they should get back to me sooner or later. Hopefully! Amen!

So, if you just curious about what did I write in my email, consider yourself reading those excerpts I copied and pasted from my email.


Dear ZI Publications,

Hi, this is me again, Azrin. I have contacted ZI through Mr. Ezra on last week about my book. Thus, today, I would like to submit my manuscript for your review and to be considered for publication.

For me, this book, though it's fictional, it is actually, something really personal. The title of the book is 'DEAD CAT FOR ZOEY'. Yeah, sounds scary, but I think, it will grab people attention once they read the tittle.

Despite being a comedy romantic book, it addresses the issue of abortion , as you all know, young couples nowadays, festively dump their premature-born babies into the dumpsters, drains and stuff. Thus, for that reason, I thought to myself to address the issue, in the most creative, compelling way for young people, esp. teenagers in Malaysia , to really capture the meaning behind this writing. And it also addresses some other issues, like parenting, parents split-up and more. There would be 20 chapters altogether, and total words are about 68,000, more less.

The first chapter of this book might be a little bit boring and lengthy, but I think it is important to introduce the background of the couple (Mr. and Mrs. Darren) and their hectic lifestyles, till they pretty abandoned their only daughter, named Zoey.

My 'furry' hope is to get this book published and distributed, because I want to teach young Malaysians about this issue. I have started my own pre-promotion of this book through Facebook and my blog, and so far, nearly 500 people have shown great interest in this writing. I know it is pretty hard to market English fiction in Malaysia, but if given certain circumstance, we can make it work, by implementing new formulas on printing numbers, price points and so on, and if we manage to pull of this thing successfully, it means a lot for more young writers out there to start writing, at the same time, it boosts our book industry too.


Will look forward,
Azrin Zahari


So, that's about it. By the way, I am attending this Youth'10 festival thing in PWTC this Friday till Sunday, and it's pretty 'gay' to say that I am volunteering..Gosh! Yeah, I know. But I think it's a good way to start mixing, mingling and 'flirting' with some new boys and girls, at the same time, applying some 'marketing techniques' I'd just learnt today, and trying to sell my BOOK! Haha, even though it has been published. This is what people call as 'SOCIAL NETWORKING'...Yeah, that's why people create Facebook. It's a powerful marketing tool actually, not a platform for stalking cute girls only. So, better make full use of it!

Bye. Salam. Love you all.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Quick Updates: ISBN registration

Hi, sorry for not updating you guys about where are we heading now. At least, we are not lost somewhere, haha.

So, last Friday, about May 14th 2010, I went to Pustaka Negara (PNM) to submit my ISBN (unique numeric commercial book identifier based upon the 9-digit Standard Book Numbering (SBN) code --> Wikipedia said so. I don't know. haha) request and registration forms to them, so that I can start publishing and printing the manuscript as soon as Clark Kent can run. Actually, I can just fax the documents to them, but I don't want to do it. I want to see and meet them, by myself, and experience how does it feel to run through all this hectic process of publishing a book. It's a first hand experience that you can't buy it, unless you do it by yourself!

So, as of today, Tuesday, May 18th, I have called the reception at PNM and they confirmed that the request has been finalized and approved! Hooray! I feel like jumping on the couch till the springs stick out and hit my nose!

So, (to many 'so' is it? but I seem to like it...it's my current obsession.), I will pick them up tomorrow, maybe, and I will have to schedule with a printing company to discuss about the printing process.

So, you guys just 'chillax' and I'll tell you how things are going on, later. Thanks for all the supports.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Will be released sooner! Yeay!

Watch out for the book launching anytime in this month of May 2010. Stay put! Thanks for all the supports.

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Laughter is the best drug

It's boring to say, well, 'laughter is the best medicine', because we've heard that a lot, thousand countless times, so it's time to change it, into something fancier and nicely audible to our ears.
Why can't we just say, 'laughter is the best Paracetamol' or something more specific, like 'Laughter is the best Iberet Folic 500 that Abbott has ever manufactured in it's entire productions' for migrain-ers.

So, what's up with laughter? Did I choke hard till death because of laughing MAO. Noooo. But what happened yesterday evening, when I was spending my time with my little cousin, is truly capturing the meaning behind above saying. Pondering yourself about what will happen tomorrow, is really a pain in the ass, as you can always plan, but you can't really execute it the way you envision it to be. Planning is crucial, nevertheless.

This kid, quick-witted kid actually, is my medicine for these unproductive days. He just knows to cuddle himself among grown-ups, and he casts his cuddly face the whole time as long as the face can bear such gaiety gestures, and it is great to be kids again, just by watching him on his homemade blase, an eternally good sport, no matter how tired he is, after hours in school.

Cutting things simpler, my Sony Webbie had captured everything into digital bytes, as I am not gonna pass such gleeful moment, so that it would inspire me to smile more, and just 'LOL' at my problems.

I was trying to be a serious interviewer in there, but as we started, he had pulled the laughing-gas trigger, successfully, and the gas was translated into burst of laughter as he said;

"Okay...who is the ..- I like to play I-SPY game.." [See? Heard enough? He just changed his question just like that, right in the middle, and since then, I can't help myself anymore, for being a serious interviewer in the background]

and then, I asked, "What is I-SPY game?" Along with his trademarked poker face, he did his best part again, shivering all the butterflies in my tummy, as he said,
"What is YOUR COLOR?"
I was like, 'what?'..you can't be serious? Is that the I-SPY type of question, asking people, what is your color? LOL :D. God this kid really deserves a nice spanking on his butt, till it gets red, for his creepy talk. And not enough with that chaos, he barked again,

"Who is the fattest man in the world?" Yeah, like I know one.

He talked about LOL, and surprisingly, he knew WTF too. Sigh. This is the internet era, where kids as small as him, knows lot better than us, the post-adolescents.

And the rest of the video was muffled with more goofy jokes that he made, till the very last second, as I asked him to wave goodbye to the camera, but instead, he teased me with his original, lame but really a pure sarcasm, though he didn't intend so, but he pulled it off, triumphantly, like a real 'Raja Lawak' of Malaysia.

Thanks Nusshan for the silly jokes. It's really helpful for the meantime.