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Interviewing Author of "MIMC" who has read "Enthusiasm"



Heni as a bride

This month, in February 2013, Abbottsbooks has big celebration.  We celebrate one year of Antusiasme (Enthusiasm in Indonesian version) and three years of Enthusiasm by interviewing authors who have read Antusiasme/Enthusiasm.  Who are they?  Below is an exclusive interview with an Indonesian author, Heni Kurniawati, presented in English version, with her novel entitled Meraih Impian Merengkuh Cinta (MIMC).  In English version means Achieving Dream Embracing Love.

Also you're invited to read other interviews with other Indonesian authors who have read Enthusiasm at Antusiasme blog.

A:  As an author of MIMC, what idea had pushed you to write this story?
H: The idea to write this novel came from my desire to write my own biography. I am sure that my experiences in life will be useful for others, especially those who want to reach their dreams. Novel is one of literary works that I like the most. So, I wrote it based on my own biography in the form of novel.  

A:  What message do you want to tell to the readers?
H:  If we have a dream, fight to reach it. Never give up, try anything we can. One day, the problems will find their solutions and all struggles will come to the end. Be patient, persistent, sincere, and say NO to desperation. Self development and continuous prayers will take us to successes in our life. 

A: What the most interesting comment do you get from the readers who have read MIMC?
H: I got two interesting comments from readers. The first is from the Dean of Faculty of English Literature, Dr. Soetomo University, Surabaya, Mr. Syamsuri Aribowo.  He had been very touched with the story on relationship between Naila and her father. The second is from Herwandi, a reader from Kalimantan (Borneo island)) who bought MIMC at Gramedia book store in Samarinda. He sent me some short text messages and said that the story of MIMC was kind of similar to his life story. He also has big dream as like the main character, Naila.

A: From MIMC front cover, what is your idea to present the pictures of snail?
H: Naila, the main character of novel MIMC starts her struggle to reach her dreams from the beginning, really from no one to someone. Begin with her profession as a waitress at a Japanese restaurant to be the one she wants to be. She continuously struggles to develop herself, slowly step by step but never stops. Snail has similar character with her struggle. This is the main reason of why I use it as a symbol in this novel.

A: As a self-published author, what bad and good experiences you have to market your book?
H: Well, thing that I like is I have freedom to do what I want with this novel. I myself determine the price which means the value of my works. Meanwhile, thing that I don’t like is I cannot rely on a book distributor for marketing. If I want to hold some promotion events, I myself should arrange them. I also work hard to sell this novel to the customers of my online shop, Bening Koleksi. For me as a self-published author, I should be ready to work hard. It’s no problem, this is the challenge. I get more experiences to strengthen my marketing skill.

A:  In the competitive book publishing world, what do you think of the best thing to do as a self-published author?
H:  Qualified manuscripts. Physical appearance of the books should be eye-catching and represent the content of the book. Another important thing is promotion to inform others about the books. Author must help to sell his book and does not only rely on book distributors. Come to readers and give them information about the books. Self publishing does not only need a manuscript, but also a good sense of business. A self publisher is the author and also the one who owns the money. Therefore, his books must go to the readers’ hands. 

A:  Do you have any other self-published authors who have inspired you?  Who are they and what’s your reasons?
H:  No, I don’t have any. One reason why I choose self publishing is the fact that major publishers need long time to evaluate a manuscript. Moreover, they only give small royalty to the writers. Some even only give 8% from the book price that cannot be determined by the author. Meanwhile, I also want to try a new business, calculate profitability, estimate market probability, and etcetera. I also want to learn anything about book publishing. 

A:  As one of Enthusiasm readers, how did you get a chance to read this book and what interest did you have to wanting to read this book?
H: A colleague lent me this novel in English version. The most interesting from this novel is the author’s discipline that should be followed by new writers. Time frequently becomes a new writer’s main reason for not to write. Meanwhile someone is the best time manager for himself.

A:  From enjoying Enthusiasm, what the most interesting story do you like to share it here?
H:  The characterization of Wanda, a little fascinating girl who always obeys her super busy mom.

A:  To whom you would like to recommend Enthusiasm and why?
H:  To everybody who has a dream and passion to make it come true. They should learn from this author’s hard work. 

A:  We come back to talk about your novel, MIMC, to whom you would like to recommend it and how to get it? 
H:  University students, senior high school graduates, all people who want to reach their dreams, and people who have complicated problems in their family.  You can get this book at Gramedia Book Stores or at my online store, Bening Koleksi or send SMS to +62 815-5302-5569.

Author's Profile
Heni Kurniawati was born in Pare, a district of Kediri regency, East Java, Indonesia. She was married to a man from Bangil, Pasuruan, East Java, Indonesia. Heni is a graduate of the Faculty of English Literature, Dr. Soetomo University, Surabaya. She has begun writing since Junior High School. Some of her short stories were broadcasted by a private radio station in Jombang, East Java, when she was in Senior High School. After moved to Surabaya and studied in English Literature, her English articles were published by Hello English Magazine in 2000-2002. She won some writing contests as a favorite winner for an East Java Essay Writing Contest held by her campus in 2002. After that she did not write for quite long time because of her business in working and studying. In 2007, she, again, started her writing career and became the third winner of a Profile Writing Contest. She was also the first winner of writing contest on the subject of The Most Beautiful Experiences in Ramadhan Fasting Month, held by the Indonesian Online Daily News (www.kabarindonesia.com) . Since that moment on, many of her articles and short stories have been published in this media—based on the citizen journalism. Her poem entitled Pengantin Padang (The Padangnese Bride and Bridegroom) was nominated as the best 75 poems at a Poem Writing Contest “Kado Untuk Kota Padangku Tercinta 2011 (a Gift for Our Beloved Padang)” held by Padang Dalam Puisi. Now, aside of her profession as a costing analyst for a global shoe manufacturer, she is also appointed as a mentor for a fiction online writing course held by PMOH, www.pelatihanmenulis.com.(*)


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