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Interview with Rena Venugopal

He is a passionate reader of self-development books. He is from a small town Johor Bahru now a city separated by a causeway from Singapore city. His schooling was at Saint Joseph School. Then he pursued his degree in Commerce at Pachaiappa’s College in Chennai, India. On completion, he returned to Malaysia. He completed a diploma in Data Processing from the UK. He dropout while pursuing a Master of Business Administration via distance learning from Heriot-Watt University UK.

On return from India, he worked as a lecturer and then joined a manufacturing and oil palm refinery in the purchasing dept. Then ventured into the business world. He was passionate about community service. He served as President of Rotary, Toastmasters, Tamilar Sangam, EWRF, and JINGO. These interactions gave him an opportunity to work with people at the top and many downtrodden. This actually prompted him to pursue writing on topics related to mindset change. He is married to Vasugi. They are blessed with 2 daughters and 3 grand kids.

Q.1 Tell us something about yourself not many people know?
First thing when I am up in the morning, I spent time expressing gratitude, affirming, visualizing, deep breathing, meditating, and exercising. This had brought great changes in my life.

Q.2 Are we going to read more from you shortly? Any new project you’re working on?
Yes. My father was a developer. He developed a housing estate “Majidee Park” in my hometown. Planning to write about dreams based on the project.

Q.3 When did you decide to write Sulk or Seize?
A. Sulk or Seize
was conceived six years ago.

Q.4 It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing. Tell us about your marketing campaign?
It is absolutely essential to get exposure. As far as this book is concerned there are no right or wrong readers. I am certain this book will create some kind of awareness in all of us. I have requested some of the book bloggers to review my book. 

Two of them from India have given 4 out of 5 stars rating for my book. Their rating is a very good start. They have also given written reviews which are very motivating. I am now exploring various ideas, to get the review in the hands of potential readers.

Q.5 What are the three things you want readers to take away from your book?
 1. Knowing yourself is the secret to a life of abundance.
2. Prioritizing your time is the secret to success.
3. Developing good habits is the secret to capitalizing on opportunities.

Q.6 What are some of the challenges you faced when you started writing?
 I faced three challenges - disciplining myself to spend time writing.
Disciplining myself by getting up 30 minutes earlier every day to spend time on writing.
Spending daily some time doing research on the topics I am writing.

Q.7 What kind of impact would you like to make with your book?
All of us are lost in our day-to-day issues. I want my readers to look out of the box and appreciate the opportunities waiting to make a difference in their life. Even a single idea, which ignites change in their mind can bring a great impact on their life.

Q.8 What is the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you?
When I attended Anthony Robbins seminar, he said, “It is in your moments of decision your destiny is shaped”. I find this very true.

Q.9 Do you believe in writer’s block? If yes, how do you deal with it?

Q.10 What were your feelings when you first saw the cover of the finished product?
I felt excited.

Q.11 Does your family support your career as a writer?
Yes. I got my daughter to read my book first. She gave me positive feedback. That excited me.

Q.12 What was one of the most surprising things you learned while writing this book?
The flow of thoughts was much better than I thought. Then the contents started fitting into like a jigsaw puzzle. New materials started popping up.

Q.13 What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
I start writing first thing in the morning when I am up. Based on the flow, I spent one to two hours daily writing.

Q.14 Do you have any unique and quirky writing habits?

Q.15 What makes your book stand out from the crowd?
My book has an inspiring story about my grandparents who went to Malaya as immigrant workers but carved a life as a successful entrepreneur. I have also shared about my father who ventured on his own to carve his name as a successful entrepreneur.

Q.16 What would you share with folks who are skeptical of reading Non-Fiction?
Reading my book, could change their perception of Non-Fiction.

Q.17 Who edited your book, and how did you select them?
A. Mr. Namasivayam
a retired headmaster did the first edition. Then a professional team from my publisher did the final edition.

Q.18 Which famous person, living or dead, would you like to meet and why?
Mahatma Gandhi, I read a fair bit about him when I dedicated a chapter to him. I am truly impressed with his non-violent resistance and the people who he inspired. A great soul.

Q.19 As an individual, how much do you grow? How was your life before you delved into this subject?
Self-development and motivation have impacted me greatly. I would have given up on myself if not for this. Before this, I was a mediocre person. Things have changed since I got involved with self-development.

Q.20 Share the experience of your writing journey so far?
During my school day I was on my school magazine editorial board. Then I was the editor of a centenary temple magazine. My first book was in my mother tongue Tamil. This is my second book. This time, I decided to work in English.

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