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Nepal’s Earthquake – The Unfortunate Event that Nobody Wants to Care!

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Today happened to be the 1st anniversary of Nepal’s earthquake that had not only killed almost ten thousands and injured almost twenty five thousands but also displaced hundreds of thousands as well as severely affected the lives of few more millions of people. It was undoubtedly one of the deadly earthquakes that hit mostly the hill regions of the impoverished nation and destroyed the livelihood of many poor and innocent people. The cries of the victims were loud and heartbreaking, the world heard their plights, and they had all come in for help.

Helping hands had come on manifolds. People, foods, blankets, water, medicines and shelters started flooded in as relief measures intensified. Candlelit vigils were arranged and donations were collected from around the world. It was not only compassion that people had shown towards the victims but also donated with opened heart and hundred of millions were raised and sent in as aids for the needy ones.

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Leaders, public figures and celebrities were involved, big announcements were made on their behalf, and the Medias were buzzed with such big news. Ten of thousands of new earthquake-proof houses were to be built by so and so! All the victims will get so and so amount of relief money from the government!! And so and so are distributing so and so amount of relief aids to so and so areas!!! Everybody was riding through the bandwagon of mercy, big promises were the norm of the day, and everyone was busy on praising and glorifying the benevolent ones as national hero. It was in fact made with such pomp and histrionic ways that they looked very real and everyone had actually believed in them.

Perhaps adversity had managed to bring the whole country together that nothing had succeeded hitherto. The people of Nepal had finally realized the importance of finding common ground on such difficult time and decided to work together in the nation building. The suffering nation had suddenly found a new hope.

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That was of course precisely a year ago. A year has passed but nothing seemed to change much since then. No new houses were built, nor were the flattened houses rebuilt. Schools are still run on an open ground and people still sleep on a makeshift shelter. Roads are not repaired and people still go cold, hungry and worried in a daily basis. Many old and weak ones had died because of harsh winter and the surviving ones are forced to live a life of uncertainty that simply carries no future.

What happened to those promises? Where were those donations gone? Where was the government? Where were the national leaders? Why nobody was helping? What happened to the people from this country? Why everyone had forgotten about them?

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I am writing this with a heavy heart. I have seen a few posts on international papers and thought that I should also attribute a page or so. But I have nothing positive to write about and finding it extremely hard to fill up the pica of my paper. The world had already forgotten about the earthquake. Nepal and its leaders are already busy on their usual infighting, self-enriching and dirty politics. People have no time whatsoever of thinking about the poor victims. If their own people and government have already forgotten about them, what else can be expected from the outside world? The victims of the earthquake were shamefully betrayed by their own people and government and left on the mercy of cruel fate for survival. What could be the saddest thing than that?

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It is my own humble way of paying respect and homage to those unfortunate ones who have lost their lives and remembering them. I have also started writing a novel called MY FORGOTTEN PATH HOME in their memories and I will be dedicating this book ultimately on their honor. The whole world might have forgotten about you, but I am not. It seemed that nobody cares about you, but I will. By writing this book, I want you to remember that you are not alone, nor forgotten. This book will help me to remember you all for the rest of my life and trust me nothing can take that away from us. Rest assured! There is still someone who had not completely forgotten about you. One true friend is enough in difficult time and I just want you to remember that. God bless you!

TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com

The harsh reality of 90% authors in modern publishing.

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Pardon me if it effuses negativity, but I am trying to be a writer of conscience and righteousness and my ethics won’t allow me otherwise. I have been in the publishing industry for a little more than a year now but I am pretty damn sure that I have already seen enough. Truth is the bitter pill that we all have to swallow one day. The writing and publishing industry is no different.

I heard people saying that 90% of authors out there hardly make enough for a living and I totally do agree. Although I have no such data or proof to assert my belief here but hey, I don’t have to. If you care to look around, the telltale signs are everywhere. Especially for the self-published authors, the situation seems pretty grimmer and it can scare a hell out of many new and aspiring writers out there. Had it not been for the passion and love of writing, most would have run away by now and I am not ashamed of being one of them. Luckily for me, I started writing only after I turned fifty and I have already arranged for my family by then.

I also read somewhere that according to Amazon, a self-published book normally sells about 250 copies in average and if this is from Amazon, it must be true then. They should know, right? I have eight books on KDP and if free download and printed copies are not counted, they are more or less right on the money. Amazon has more than a million authors on their book and a sale of a little more than a dozen copies can jump your author rank from the rock bottom to almost fifty thousands. Once I had sold 30 copies and I was already at the 1st position on certain category which means only one thing. Not many books are selling at all, staying idle at the bottom of the pile for very long and you don’t need that many sales to get yourself out of that bottom pit. Amazon Bestselling author is still a very attractive and coveted title but it means not much at least in a financial term. And it shows how other 90% authors might have to rely on other jobs for a living.

When I was checking on other author’s profile, I was really amazed how they were trying to wear so many hats all at the same time. It was not only author but also writer, blogger, editor, proofreader, columnist, writing coach, reviewer, speaker, publisher, reader, and many more. I use AUTHOR/NOVELIST as writing novel is my main job. Of course, I also write article on paper, do blogging, publishing, and marketing all at the same time. It took quite a while before I realized why people do that. They were actually advertising their services to other fellow writers. In a nutshell, it showed that 90% of authors rely on each others for more than they want to admit and that is actually not a bad thing at all.

As I only write for my charity, my expectation is very low. My wishful goal is to sell at least 10 books in a daily basis and I would be happy. It adds up to 300 books in a month which makes more or less 300 bucks and that will be enough for the tuition fees of my sponsored children back in Nepal.

Now here is the opportunity for you fellow struggling authors out there. If you can help achieve that goal of mine selling 10 books per day, you know where to find me and consider yourself hired as my publicist right hereon. Until then, keep writing! Take care!

TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com

Why I have to write this book?

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THE GURKHAS: A True Story!

After Lord Buddha and the Himalayas, the Gurkhas makes up the three best things that have ever came out of Nepal and it is almost that time the 200 years long institution gets some help on polishing up its good name. Gurkha is certainly a world renowned name for unparalleled loyalty and bravery, there is no question about that and we should always be proud of it. However, do you know one good Gurkhas’ book that was actually written by a Gurkha himself? I have been looking one for a very long time, there was none and all the Gurkhas books I have found so far were written by outsiders. And they were somehow lopsided hence lacking authenticity.

Isn’t it sad that we must rely on others to write our own story? Why cannot we write our own story? Don’t we even have one able hand to write our story?

It kept on plaguing me for quite a while, I couldn’t shirk away from the responsibility for too long and here is my answer for all.

I am really pleased and honored to announce that I am going to write a true Gurkhas book. It will be a true Gurkhas book for the Gurkhas, to the Gurkhas and by the Gurkha. This is the challenge I will take with pride, honor and heart. I will do whatever it takes to make it a truly Gurkhas book and I will need as much help, support and cooperation as you all possibly can.

In order to complete this project, I am going to dedicate entire year of 2017 for the researching works and I want to talk with as many people as possible. I will start with Hong Kong and then I will visit Singapore, Malaysia, Brunei, UK and eventually Nepal. In addition, I am also planning to visit Myanmar (Burma) as well as India and the book should be ready for final publication by 2018.

If you are a Gurkha, you are related to Gurkhas, or have something important to say about Gurkhas, you are mostly welcomed to talk with me. What’s more, all the Nepalese brothers and sisters are invited to participate and your contributions will be highly appreciated. If you have old photos, medals, souvenirs or any objects related to the Gurkhas and its story, you are cordially invited to write to me. If you are an institution related to Gurkhas, hold significant position or have something to say, I want to talk with you as well sir. Regardless of your belief, position and importance, anyone can freely talk to me and I will equally and wholeheartedly appreciate your helps and supports.

And your contributions, small or big, will be duly accredited for in the final version of the book and it will be remained there forever.

Thanking to you all from the bottom of my heart again and sincerely do hope that we can work together and create a world class book for a world class institution like the Gurkhas and you all know, I cannot do it by myself alone and I will need all the helps, cooperation and supports from you all. And I want to take this opportunity to thank you all again in well advance so we can work together to make it a memorable as well as a worthwhile project that we can all be proud of it at the end.

Let’s work together hand in hand and make the Gurkhas world famous again!

By the way, I was 1st intake of January 1980, my army number was 21163617, my name is ISHWOR BAHADUR GURUNG, Ex. 6 Gurkha Rifles, retired at 1993 as an army Corporal after 13 years of service and I am from Dhampus/Pokhara/Kaski/West Nepal.

Please contact me at tim.gurung@gmail.com anytime, thank you!

Yours Truly/Best Regards
TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com
(I am an author of 8 novels based in Hong Kong, I write on serious global and social issues, and only write for my charity ISSLCARE. I am writing 5 more books in 2016! And the Gurkhas book will be my 15th book

Look, What Happened to my Twitter Account?

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Social networking is a necessary devil for all. Especially for the self published authors like me, it is a must and we can hardly do things without it. But too much of it can be a distraction for all and it can do real harm in productivity. It should be for networking job but not for using it and if not cautious, it can be pretty addictive as well. We should always remember it and ignore the rule on your own peril.

I have accounts with Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram and Tumbler for my social networking needs. But I must admit, it is almost impossible to use all, let alone be able to monetize them all. I am mostly in Linkedin (professional) and Facebook (professional as well as personal) in a regular basis. For the remaining accounts, I hardly use them and I post just a few things here and there in order to keep it active. I had quite a leeway at Twitter but if I were to speak honestly, I couldn’t find enough reason and time to maintain it, and decided to do something about it.

I still don’t understand how people buy things by simply flicking through a tiny bit of information on Twitter. I might be wrong but I genuinely believe that Twitter is good only if you have a huge number of followers – I mean genuine not the fake/bought ones – and the minimum is at least over 15k. And how do you get such a big number of genuine followers? I have literally no idea. Therefore, I decided to give a new facelift to my Twitter account and this is what I did.

1. I stopped following all the people which I personally don’t know.
2. I blocked all those ones who wanted to sell me the fake followers.
3. I blocked all those accounts with foreign language except English.
4. I stopped following those ones who never reciprocate.
5. And I followed only those ones I have personally known, have association and exchanged comments in a regular basis.

The number of my followers at the beginning of this exercise was 2170 and the number I was following drastically dropped from 1760 to 45 at the end. The number of my followers had dropped to 1260 by the time I was writing this blog but I am expecting it to drop to just a few hundreds followers by the end of it. Once it has reached to the bottom, I would know the number of my genuine followers and I will restart from there again.

Social networking is all about networking, finding value and eventually making it useful for all. If I can have a few hundred valuable followers who will read and appreciate my works, I will be more than happy. We can have thousands, even million followers but if it provides no values, it is useless. I rather have small and valuable followers than huge followers which have no real values.

What’s more, I can do many things with small numbers and it is also easy to handle. Most importantly, I can connect, communicate and react in a personal basis and that can be a real value to someone whom I care. Hope this changes will bring something positive to my Twitter account and the experiences will be a worthwhile one.

TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com

Why people behave like animals more often than we want to admit it?

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If I say to you that you need to be told what to read, you would probably say either get lost or just ignore me. However, if it was said by some famous people like Oprah Winfrey or Warren Buffet instead of me, will you react the same way as you did with me? The answer would be a resounding NO and you are not alone. Why people always need to be told what to read, eat, wear or do with their life? How come? I am trying to answer that question here.

I am not a qualified psychologist, doctor or specialist on this subject. I am just a writer and trying to find an answer through a writer’s perspective and nothing more. Why we always listen to famous people? Is it because of trust, credibility or star power? It is a bit of all. It is also our intuition, a bit of craving for our own self and seeing our hopes and dreams through them. Nobody wants to hear or follow a Nobody person like you and me. If you have proved nothing and achieved nothing in life, people will have no respect for you hence no weight on your words. No matter what you say or promise, it carried no significance to them and people will simply ignore you. But celebrity and famous people are totally in different league, people have faith, respect and belief on them and whatever they say, people will listen. It is also the reason why advertisers use famous people for products, their endorsement carries huge significance on our decision making and sales data don’t lie.

It is literally the famous people who tell us what to buy, eat, wear, read and do with our lives and we follow them in a blindfolded manner. Why? We don’t trust our own self? We cannot make our own decision? And we cannot even select our own foods, clothes and household items?

Why people always need to be told what to do with our own life? I think it is mostly because of the herd mentality, the same one as the herd of sheep, and I genuinely believe that humans are also seriously affected by the same herd mentality as animals. I have seen people queuing up without even knowing what the queue was for and witnessed people being attracted mostly towards a busy and crowded place than an empty one. Whenever we see a crowd, our interest spontaneously grows and regardless of our situation, we all want to check it out. Whenever we see more people buying a particular product, we all want to buy it as well and similarly we all want to go and dine at the most crowded restaurant. It is also the reason why some picture, quote or video go viral in internet. The more it is seen by people, the more people want to see it and an endorsement from a celebrity or a famous person is a cachet of approval.

That is the reason why a simple endorsement from Oprah’s book club can make a virtually unknown writer famous overnight and life is changed once and for all. But why we need to be told what to read by Oprah or other famous persons? If we cannot even choose the book we want to read, then we have a serious problem here. It is like the herd of sheep, when you see all the sheep are going towards one particular way, you need to follow them and that is all about it.

Now if I say there is some similarity between humans and animals, will you agree? I am pretty sure that you will certainly say get lost. No worries. Let’s try this very simple test first before anything else and you can be the judge.

Option 1 – A random guy at the market approaches you, shows a nicely packed box and tells you that it contains a genuine gold ring.

Option 2 – A nicely packaged mysterious health product is launched, it prophesied for a slim body within two weeks of eating it and endorsed by someone very famous and slim. It actually contains horse dung (Of course, they won’t endorse a product made out of horse dung, it is just an example) and nobody is saying about it.

Which option will you believe? An honest answer here can reveal a lot about us, people. Your action might even surprise you. But don’t worry, you are not alone. If you have actually finished reading this article by a random guy like me, it means a lot and my purpose of writing this article is already achieved.

TIM I GURUNG/AUTHOR AT ISSLCARE – http://www.timigurung.com

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This piece was accepted for an academic research journal in the US but due to some unforeseen reasons, couldn’t be posted there so here it is. Hope you will enjoy it, thank you!

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