I’ve got an email interview with AllAuthor.com recently, where I can share a few thoughts on my first book and my experience. Hope it can motivate you. The original interview was posted here: https://allauthor.com/interview/viethungnguyen/.
Do you have a simple childhood memory that you could never forget?
There are quite many however, if I can share one, it would be that I many times had a dream of becoming the cowboy in the West of America, long hair, riding big motorbike (Harley Davidson style) through the long, beautiful, un-ended road in the midst of a wide-open and wild meadow.
Do you remember the first book you read?
I don’t remember exactly. But one of the early books that kinda awake me is the book named The Shadowless Lamp, written by Junichi Watanabe. I did spark a light of living and dying in me, triggering me to learn more about that inevitable phenomenon.
At what age did you start your career as a software application programmer?
After my graduation from the university, 1999. I was 22 at the time.
Since how long have you been living in Saigon, Vietnam?
I went to university in Saigon since 1994. And l’ve been there till now.
What are things about corporate life no one tells you about?
I learned one thing is that for the sake of our survival, we go to work. And corporate life is one option. And I was too focus on working that I don’t realize that there are other options. And it is a personal choice to pick a suitable one for one’s life. More importantly, if the choice can also steer you toward ultimate happiness, it’s the best. The biggest issue in one’s life always relates to people / relationship issues. And corporate life can’t exclude those. Fame, politics can add on into the picture of corporate life that they are just like too many ropes, trying to tie you and hang you up, if you’re not aware of where you’re heading for your life.
Why did you decide to write “The Happiness Journal: Your daily inspirational sips toward reaching happiness”?
As I shared in the book, I learned that my advice and my life have a great influence on one of my ex-colleagues. And he was able to have a financially-independent and freedom life. I realized that those advices and such are ready on my personal web site (www.viethungnguyen.com) through my blogs in the last 10+ years. So, I tried to assemble them and rearrange them a bit and I have enough content for the book. And I hope it can “convey” the same message and have positive influences to readers like what influences I have had on my friend.
What does “happiness” mean to you?
It’s quite simple for me. It’s a calm, peaceful state of mind that I have been continuously cultivating from within my daily activities of thinking, acting, and talking.
What is the most inspiring sentence you have ever heard or read?
It’s hard to tell. But I love this: “There can be no real spiritual growth without deeply understanding ourselves just the way we are.” That’s from Snow in the Summer of Sayadaw U Jotika.
Who is your target audience? What are some things you wish your readers would take away from your books?
I think I would target people between 30-50. Those are the ones who have experienced enough of ups and downs in life to see that they deserve a better direction to ultimate happiness for their own life. I used my own, real stories as variety suggestions and questions for readers to find their own directions to happiness.
Are you willing to post an entry, old or new, from your journal or diary?
I still post it on my web site, once I have time.
At age 25, would you pursue a good paying corporate job that makes you unhappy or a hobby that makes you happy, but has no guarantee to pay the bills? What would you advise?
At age 25, I have financial debt to pay. And because I was quite focus on that, I don’t think much. And it turned out good for me. My recommendation for people under 30 is that do whatever you want to do, need to do. Experience and explore all you can do. Keep in mind that for whatever you do, it’s okay as long as it’s harmless to anyone, including you. So, be serious about that harmless criteria and experiment to your best. After 30, you will realize that you are still not satisfied, no matter what you have. And that’s the time you need to review and pick for yourself a direction / approach for how you want to live your life in the next 10 years, 20 years, and till the day you die. If you don’t have enough experience under 30, you may not have great clue for what you want to live your life to to fullest after 30 or so.
What are your hobbies apart from writing?
Meditation / mindfulness is my focus.
What are your plans for the future as a writer? Are you working on anything new?
I continue sharing my happiness journey to everyone, the things I experience and learn in my journey. I’ll publish The Happiness Journal #2 soon.
When did you join AllAuthor? What do you think of the experience so far? Do you have any feedback?
I joined around Dec 2020. I like the mockup a lot. I’d love to spread out about my book via AllAuthor which at the end to boost sale for my book.