Salam....sebenarnya dah lama saya terima emel ni..dalam 3 minggu sudah...seperti biasalah kan...saya masih dalam phase NBF..jadi saya kepala saya seolah-oleh jammed untuk bercerita ttg benda lain..jadi..segala komen2 yang saya terima melalui emel akan saya postkan di sini sebagai salah satu cara mengatakan blog saya ini masih hidup...eheheheh..kepada Anniza..terima kasih banyak2 atas komen yang diberikan...
I am no musician, but I know good music when I hear one, I am no writer but I know a good story when I read one.
To be honest, I have been mulling over whether to write to you for some time now. I must say here right at the outset that I am no expert in Malay literature nor language although Bahasa Melayu is my mother tongue.
I’ve had the privilege of reading your latest book, Jauh Kau Pergi, some time back and thought that you write well. Reading that book prompted me to find out your earlier works and I am proud to say that I now have all of your 4 books!
Jauh Kau Pergi is interesting in terms of plot and characterisation. I liked how you were able to build an ecosystem surrounding your characters so that they’re 3-dimensional.The 2 main protagonists, Haiyan Rifqi and Afi (sorry, can’t remember her full name!) had “layers” to them which makes them more credible, just like any other human beings. We’re not just a woman-we’re a daughter of someone, a sister to a sibling, a mother to a child, a friend to some companions and a lover of our beloved. This is normal. Same with Rifqi’s character-though I find it weird that his family is never referred to in Jauh (was that on purpose? Why?)
I liked how the supporting characters like the rest of the commando friends painted a fuller picture into the lives of the protagonists and I think that there is definitely great potential of these commandoes to have a story of their own someday? I read somewhere that Jimmy might, right? Keeping my fingers crossed that you’ll tell wonderful tales about them!
But having read Jauh, I also noticed that you were a bit clumsy at times. There was plenty of “information dumping” which tends to throw the story off for me as a reader sometimes. Please don’t get me wrong-there were plenty of times when you’ve successfully managed to insert useful information. Examples:
When Afi tried to guess Rifqi’s role in his unit – that was nicely done! I never knew that there are 5 people to a Commando unit or that each had their own expertise
When Afi was “attacked” by Rifqi – a good way of sharing with readers the risks/potential consequence of such a hazardous job and the ordeal that family members of such people may have to deal with because of the nature of such jobs.
I wished that you could have maintained that kind of finesse in your writing...
After reading Jauh I started telling all my friends about that book and managed to get them to buy a copy each and read it. We all agree that you have the potential of being as successful as JR Ward and her Black Dagger Brotherhood series if you could improve on your writing skills. Ward had created a world in which her readers would love to live in and where her characters have some things in common (common mission/family ties/prophecy, etc) and I see the potential of that with the supporting characters in Jauh (Helmi, Eddie, Luqman and Jimmy). Like you, Ward was also in danger of committing the sin of “information dumping” but then chose to create a “dumping ground” at the beginning of her books so that her readers can follow the lingo used by her characters without (unnecessary and) long explanation in the main text of the story. That kept her stories and the world that she created real and fluid.
I hope you’re not offended by the stuff that I’ve written here. These are my sincere thoughts on your latest work, which I think is your best yet. With a little bit more of tighter editing, I’m confident that your soon-to-be published work NBF could even surpass Jauh.
I know you can do it, Dhiya! I am rooting for you! My best wishes and good luck!