Book Review – The Subtle Art of not giving a F**K

Book – The Subtle Art of not giving a F**K

Author – Mark Manson

Page – 212

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Harper Collins

It’s midnight in India and I have decided to write a review of this book. Almost impossible to resist myself. There is nothing new here – and yet there is SO MUCH NEW here. A cliche, no matter how essentially true, may lose its meaning after the n-th time you’ve heard it. Saying the same stuff in a different way made me look at the life lessons here differently, and resulted in the most a-ha moments of any book I read recently.

Turn to the contents page and you’ll find chapters titled: Don’t Try, Happiness Is A Problem, You Are Not Special, The Value of Suffering, You’re Wrong About Everything (But So Am I), Failure Is The Way Forward, The Importance of Saying No, and lastly my favorite chapter, And Then You Die. Despite the depressing sounding chapters this book will give you one counterintuitive technique after another of ways to let your problems go (your problems aren’t special either), truly improve your life and your correct your values. To learn from your experiences and to learn what’s most important to care about in life and let the rest fall away. Not giving an F about stupid stuff like how you appear to others that don’t really matter, stop carrying around your parent’s baggage and to know when to move on. This subtle art is something we all need to relearn and will do a great justice for humanity if we did. I have never heard of this author before but I’ll certainly be looking up his future works.

Some of my favourite quotes are

  1. “You are going to die one day. I know that’s kind of obvious, but I just wanted to remind you in case you’d forgotten”
  2. The people who just laugh and then do what they believe in anyway. Because they know it’s right. They know it’s more important than they are, more important than their own feelings ad their own pride and their own ego”.
  3. When a person has no problems, the mind automatically finds a way to invent some.
  4. The solution to one problem is merely the creation of the next one.

There are many more such inspiring and relatable lines.

If you expect advice on how to become an indifferent and insensitive person who feels good about themselves no matter what, prepare to be disappointed. The book is essentially the opposite – a wake-up call to be honest with yourself and live in accordance with healthy core values.
In today’s age of social media when we are constantly exposed to extremes and fake personas, we tend to forget our self-worth and pursue shallow ambitions in order to feel special in some way, we feel entitled to receive special treatment and get easily offended. In this sense, the book is a much-needed slap in the face for the current social context.

SS

Final Verdict – I recommend this book to everyone questioning where they’re going with their life and to everyone else as well. I stumbled upon this book when I was having quite a crisis and this book really opened my eyes and made me see my crisis in a whole different way.

Book Title – 4/5

Book Cover – 4/5

Narration – 4.5/5

Language and Grammar – 4.5/5

Final Rating – 4.5/5

Amazon Link to buy the book – Click here

Child Beggar’s Conundrums and What Do I Have to Do?

Child beggars are common in developing countries. What are the contemplations which run inside your brains when you see a homeless kid in the city? The thoughts could vary and it’s obvious, but there are a few common questions – “Why are they leading such life? Who are responsible?” There are two aspects to look at, and it’s hard to pass judgment on which is right.

Being a human being, we feel dismal, craving to help them. They might be orphans, or their parents are not physically fit enough to feed them and hence, they are forced to beg on the streets. It is also possible that they are lost, and their parents might have been searching for them for a few weeks or months. Is it their mistake? Don’t they have the right to live? Live like any other child in our society. Don’t they have the right to education and to go to school? Government can be doing enough, NGOs may be supporting enough kids, but there is a gap, and that’s why we still have child beggars on the streets. If you analyse and consider all these points, then giving away a few bucks may not make a huge difference in our lives, but it can bring a smile on their face. That may help them to afford sufficient meals for the day.

Human trafficking is not new in our society. This is another aspect of child beggar conundrum. We often hear and read about racquets which are forcing young kids to beg. You may have seen women carrying infants or toddlers along with a couple of teenagers, where these kids often approach you for money and their mother (or that woman) would be standing and looking at them from a distance. You may find that woman along with the kids at the same place every day, whenever you pass that street. Did you ever think that their mothers are possibly forcing them to beg and pushing them into begging as if it’s a business? Its easy for kids to extract the money from pedestrians on the footpath or from someone who is sitting in their car at red light signals.

Think about both aspects before you help a child beggar next time. Are you unintentionally encouraging child beggars by giving some money? Are you unknowingly supporting a human trafficking racquet? Are you helping an orphan kid who doesn’t have anyone to take care of him? Are you supporting someone who is hungry and badly needs a meal to survive? Ask yourself. Perhaps you have distinct answers at various circumstances, yet I leave these answers to you.

Your friend,
Subrat Saurabh

Author & Blogger

How to manage your time to follow your passion.

How do you successfully manage your corporate job and your passion together?” This is the most frequently asked question to me. Don’t say that you don’t have enough time. You have the same number of hours every day that was given to anyone else.

In the course of recent years, an ever-increasing number of individuals have successfully made a career out of their interests and passions.

How about you? have you ever thought about it? Perhaps you are thinking that it’s difficult to do, since you have a job which pays well and looks extraordinary on a resume or on your LinkedIn profile — or probably you are not inspired.

There is only one solution to manage your job as well as passion. Time Management is the best practice when it comes to achieve anything significant. Below are the few tips listed which can help you trigger redefining your approach.

1.       Early start – There is no right time to start. Every second is important and auspicious. Start as soon as possible and face the challenges and resolve the issues during the journey. With every resolved issue, you gain confidence and get closer to your target.
2.       Maintain a diary and be organized – Create a to-do list in a diary and follow it. Maintain it on a daily basis. Identify an action plan along with the timelines. It’s ok if you don’t execute on time but evaluate the delay.
3.       Break your work, plan your activities and prioritise it – Most importantly, we should identify the work and break it into pieces of tasks. With every closed task, you get closer to the completion of that work. Plan your activities before you start the day. Maybe you can plan for the next day before you go to bed or plan it before you leave your bed to start the day. We should always prioritise and finish the priority work without fail.
4.       Say “NO” – Learn to say “No”. You cannot do everything and hence, you should know your strength and skills. Over-commitment is dangerous and leads to failure.
5.       Trust your people/team – Success is a never-ending journey. You will come across many people during the journey. Trust them, show confidence and give them space. Spend time and be available for them.
6.       Connect with the world – Stay connected with the world through social media. Check the latest trends, be aware of latest developments and new technologies.
7.       Take a break – There is no harm in taking a break between work. It helps you revive your energy, to generate new ideas and to bounce back. Work Hard and Party Harder.
8.       Weekends should be productive – We should enjoy your weekends with family and friends. Go out with them for outing, pub, or for a movie but spend some hours to balance your work and passion during the weekends.
9.       Utilize your waiting time – We spend lots of time in a queue of food counter at office, or in a queue at bus stop/train station or in a shopping mall. Utilize that time by listening to your favourite music, YouTube videos, or listen to an audio book, or read an autobiography.
10.   Spend time with yourself – You should always spend time with yourself. Lock yourself in a room for some time in a week, meditate and analyze your approach. Go for a solo trip. No excuses.
11.   Stay away from negativity – Be in touch with critics but not with negative people. There is a fine line between critics and negative people. Critics want you to succeed, take their feedback positively. However, negative people are jealous of you and want you to fail.

Success can’t be achieved overnight, it’s a journey. Keep moving and Be positive.

Your friend,
Subrat Saurabh

My Unconditional Apology to Miss XYZ. Yes, I have three babies.

I am going to share an interesting incident that happened with me last week. I was in deep dilemma of whether it should be shared or not, but finally, decided to share with you all a different side of the story of being an author. Being successful & recognised with two books looks amazing, but sometimes it has a grey side.

Last week, a teenage girl (college student) Miss XYZ contacted me on social media and wanted to share with me her reading experience and review of my latest book ‘And We Walked Away’. Being a new author, if any unknown reader puts an effort to contact me to share the review, it always excites me. I decided to respond to her immediately with excitement and lots of hope to receive some feedback.

To my surprise, she was absolutely upset and angry with me after reading my book. She started scolding and literally screamed at me. I decided to gather some review comments from her to analyse her point of view (to be honest, I was not very happy with her behaviour).
She highlighted a few points about my book (which I cannot directly mention here, as they are related to climax and suspense of the story), but I will try to share as much as possible.

Firstly, she feels that the way the protagonist (Abhimanyu) was helping her girlfriend (Naina) in college sent a wrong message to the college-going generation and our society.
Secondly, After Reading the climax of the story, she was forced to stereotype boys and girls in a certain way, which she is able to very well relate with her life and most importantly, she was upset with me, feeling that how somebody can think of such a love story. Does it exist? Perhaps, She didn’t realise that love exists for thousands of years and it existed before the time of social media (as the story is plotted in the early 2000s).

I tried to make her understand that every fiction story has lots of drama, which is necessary to keep the story moving but she was not convinced.

At last, she told me that she would pray that I quit writing, and that I should never come up with any other new book. This brought tears to my eyes. I could not sleep properly that night. I treat my both books as my babies apart from my one year old daughter.

My dear Miss XYZ, I don’t know if this post will ever reach to you or not, but please consider my sincere apology that you felt disappointed and upset after reading ‘And We Walked Away’.
I am absolutely okay if you didn’t like the plot, character, climax, suspense or whatever. You are a reader and you have every right to criticise my book because you have paid for my book and you have invested few hours to read it. However, being a storyteller I have a different view about your perspective. I see it as success and honour, when an unknown person sitting almost 2500 kms from me puts an effort to find my details to contact me to share their views about my book (either good or bad). I take it as a moment of pride. Secondly, I am now convinced that my book has definitely touched some chord with you, and you related it to your real-life incidents. That’s why you are able to relate with it so much, even though you know that it’s fiction. I take it as a moment of success for myself.
At last, feel free to criticise the book of any author but never ever curse them. You don’t know how much effort it takes to pen down a story, get it published, release it in the market and make it to a bestseller. I take it in a positive note on behalf of my thousands of readers and well-wishers that whenever I will come up with my next book, I will pray that you should get a chance to read and hopefully, I will be able to change your opinion about my book. I will come out stronger.

Love

Subrat Saurabh

Spotless

Written By – Arti Rai (Author of “Flares of Love” )

What if we could

every night squeeze

our hearts and hand it to dry

before we get to sleep.

 

You would go away ,

I would be gone too

in guise of babbling lather.

Our sleep would be dreamless.

 

Our sleep would shake midnight flowers

in waltz of ecstasy.

 

You and I would wear

our hearts  every morning ,

all new ,

and walk past each other

as guiltless as dove

flying in the spotless sky!

 

You can grab a copy of her book at amazon – Click here

Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict or anything related to content.

 

And We Walked Away

Writing a book is harder than I thought and I am blessed to be surrounded with many good friends, colleagues and family members. The world is a better place with them.

THE WAIT IS OVER! I invite you to experience and feel the rocky roads, and live the love story of Abhimanyu and Naina.

My second book “And We Walked Away” was released on 24th August 2018. Thanks to my all readers and friends for their overwhelming response during pre-order. I love reading messages, comments and emails which I received from you guys during pre-order.

Such lovely response to “And We Walked Away” even before the release which entered NATIONAL BESTSELLER within few hours of pre-order on Day 1. Special thanks to those who have placed an order on Day 1 of Pre-Order. Book had reached a National Best Seller Rank #27 under Romantic Category.

I recognize and acknowledge my all readers of my first book; if you hadn’t read it, then I wouldn’t have thought to write this book. So once again, thank you!

Sharing you the opening lines of my new book “And We Walked Away

IMG_4872

Here is the blurb of the book

And We Walked Away” revolves around the friendship of three friends in Engineering college, with a love story blooming in their hearts. It connects to the kind of boys who are in love and keep trying to convince the same girl in different ways for a long time, not moving on in life. Also, it talks about the kind of girls who don’t believe in love but also, don’t want to take advantage of a boy’s feelings. The girls who are not conservative but don’t want to pursue love.

Crisp Plot

Abhimanyu, a well-known author returns to his engineering college in Bangalore after a decade and notices a lot of changes in the college over this period. It reminds him how he met his ladylove, Naina on the first day of college and fell in love with her at the first sight. Abhimanyu, being an impulsive, stubborn and impatient guy decides to propose her in a rush. She doesn’t believe in love and has her own reasons for it. Abhimanyu with the help of his friends Aarush and Dev proposes and tries to convince Naina many a times in unusual ways but he fails miserably. However, a trick help to melts her heart, but destiny has a different plan.

Here, I am sharing you the smile and moment when I unwrapped the first copy of my book.

It will be available on all leading e-commerce websites soon. You can grab a copy from

Amazon – Click here

Notion Press – Click here

Have the women left Venus?

Written By – Geet Jalota (Author of “Have the women left Venus?” )

Today, 20 percent of Germany’s corporate boardroom seats belong to women, and in a move that will increase gender diversity, the country passed a law in March instituting boardroom quotas. The law requires that companies have at least 30 percent women in supervisory seats, and German Justice Minister Heiko Maas called it “the greatest contribution to gender equality since women got the vote.” Germany follows in the footsteps of Norway, Spain, France, Iceland, Italy, and Belgium, which all have similar legislation.

While many strategies have been recommended to address the wage gap within companies, Sales force, the cloud-based software company, opted to vanquish it completely by reviewing its payroll and simply adjusting salaries so that all female employees made the same amount as the men in comparable roles. The decision, which was first made public in November, was implemented following the review of 17,000 employees’ salaries and cost the company $3 million.

Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict or anything related to content.

The Shady Me – In the arms of Depression

Written By – Neha Gupta (Author of “Phases of Moon”)

Dark are the clouds of pessimism,

Darker than the starless night.

Oh Lord! I cannot see through it any more,

The smog of emptiness is chocking my soul.

 

The big ‘D’ has blocked my mind to the light and happiness,

And has made me numb to all happy factors around.

 

I feel burrying my face into my soul and never get up,

to face the odds, that chill my spine through.

 

The fury, anger, anxiety have become the devils of my heart,

Busy corroding me inside, making me feel to end the strife.

A strife between my dearies and the ascending mounds of emptiness.

 

For a moment, I am sane

And again it’s the same drenching pain.

It kills, it makes me still every second,

Makes me think, if I am the same person, loved and lovable,

Am I the same creature, whose smile would light up lives?

 

I want to pull myself out, before the big ‘D’ gulps me in,

Burdening me more with the guilt and sin.

 

I need that light of love and hope,

That can carry me through this dark

And lead me to contentment, peace and love.

Peace, that I can make with my soul

And feel the world lively and whole.

 

“Phases of Moon”  is available in print and as an E book on Amazon, Flipkart, Infibeam, Kobo and Google play.

Neha

Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict.

सुना है इश्क़ भी रब की इबादत से कम नहीं है।

तू एक खुशबू है उपवन का, जुदा कोई कर नहीं सकता,
तू है एक ख्वाब आँखो का फना कोई कर नहीं सकता।
जतन कर ले कोई कितना जमाने मे जुदाई का,
तेरे मेरे मोहब्बत को वो रुसवा कर नहीं सकता।
है मेरे रूह भी बंदी जेहन मे तू भी है अब भी,
वजह अब जो भी हो साथी, लूटा हूं जीत कर सभी,
नहीं कुछ पास अब मेरे नहीं कुछ डर जमाने का,
चले है इस कदर की मंजिल से नुमाया कर नहीं सकते।
कश्मकश है कि मंजिल तू है या खुद खुदा मेरे,
फना हो आरजू की रब मे या की इश्क़ मे तेरे,
सुना है इश्क़ भी रब की इबादत से कम नहीं है तो,
सनम और रब को हम खुद से पराया कर नहीं सकते।
                                                ~ शिशिर प्रियदर्शी
Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict.

How to write interesting characters for your fiction writing

It’s been over 30 years that the Hindi Film titled “Mr. India” was released in India in 1987 and till date we remember the character Mogambo and his famous dialogue “Mogambo Khush hua”. Even today, it is used in many colloquial contexts and situations to express achievement or satisfaction. That’s the power of creative writing. Mogambo is an example of brilliant and long-lasting characterization. Writer duo Salim-Javed did the magic.

Apart from Mogambo, over the years we’ve had very interesting characters on both celluloid and on paper. For any fiction writing be it cinema, storybook or a novel, apart from the story, the central theme; the next thing that entices a reader are the characters. And well-crafted characters also become a very convenient tool at the hands of the writer to convey their thoughts to the readers.

Stories told through characters tend to stay with us longer vis-à-vis stories told through merely circumstances and situations. Many a times, it is the very definition of the character that helps a writer navigate through the story. This particularly applies to long drawn series where sometimes the story becomes so elongated that it hits a roadblock and that time, often, it is the very definition of either one or protagonists or the central characters that acts as the guidance system for the writer, example – American TV Show titled “Person of Interest”.

So, naturally, the next pertinent question is, what is the cue to creating interesting memorable characters for your story?

Apart from thinking about the story and its presentation and setting up the screenplay (or the décor of a novel), creating characters can be a very challenging step, or let me correct myself, creating memorable, lasting and interesting characters can be a very challenging step. One might argue that the 12 character archetypes laid down by Jung i.e.

  1. Creator – If it can be imagined, it can be created
  2. Caregiver – Love your neighbor as yourself
  3. Ruler – Power isn’t everything, it’s the only thing
  4. Jester – If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution
  5. Regular Gal/Guy – All men and women are created equal
  6. Lover – I only have eyes for you
  7. Hero – Where there’s a will, there’s a way
  8. Outlaw – Rules are meant to be broken
  9. Magician – It can happen!
  10. Innocent – Free to be you and me
  11. Explorer – Don’t fence me in
  12. Sage – The truth will set you free

These archetypes can act as a good guidance system for a novice writer, but these only say what needs to be achieved and not how.

To cater to the how part, it needs to be remembered, that every human being is capable of great imagination and harbors some of the exquisite fantasies. All, the writer needs to do is delve deep inside and look for those unexpressed, unsatisfied, longing characteristics, garnished with imagination and saddled with some practical real-life constraints to create memorable and interesting characters.

One of the foremost requirements is to read extensively, both fiction and non-fiction. Non-fiction, reality based books like memoirs, biographies travelogues, etc. also serve as a great source of some juicy real life references.

It is often said that “truth is stranger than fiction” and rightly so. Real life stories offer much more drama, thrill and an interesting mix of the above character archetypes which can help the writer create some of the most wonderful characters ever created. It also needs to be remembered that the above character archetypes are also nothing but a very careful and long term observation of human psychology.

Over a period of time the character archetypes have evolved, even though these 12 primitive archetypes continue to hold the pivotal position in character design. However, slowly, as there is more and more acceptance for art forms like literature, cinema, storytelling, grey characters (neither pure hero, nor pure villain) have increasingly come to gain prominence, as they closely resemble their real-life conceptual doppelgangers.

Lastly, I would like to conclude by saying, regardless of what theory you follow, your characters should be relatable, even if they are totally imaginary and draw no reference from any real person.

Virag Dhulia

About the writer:

Virag Dhulia is a registered screenwriter, novelist and short film maker. His novel titled “Chess without a Queen” is available on various online platforms. Short films written and directed by him are available on the YouTube channel – “Chai Pakoda”. Virag also writes movie reviews occasionally on his website – www.viragd.com

Reference: https://writerswrite.co.za/the-12-common-archetypes/

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