I have fond memories of reading Murakami Haruki's fictions. I probably have read Norwegian Wood and Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World four, five times, and I just have finished South of the Border, West of the Sun once again.
But, that doesn't mean I'm interested in every piece of his works. When it comes to this semi-autobiographical non-fiction, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, I couldn't enjoy it and honestly I gave up after I finished 2/3 of the book. To me, reading him talking about running over and over again is simply boring.
So why write on something that is so boring? Well, other than running, the book actually has some true life stories here and there, and they're inspirational. Don't get me wrong, I'm absolutely not that kind of person who spends time on something like 10 Facts You Need to Know to Make Yourself Happy. I just found these accidentally and I realized they are somehow related to the life I lead.
Anyway, if there are any of you still reading, here it goes.
In other words, you can't please everybody.
Even when I ran the club, I understood this. A lot of the customers came to the club. If one of out ten enjoyed the place and decided to come again, that was enough. If one out of ten was a repeat customer, then the business would survive. To put it another way, it didn't matter if nine out of ten people didn't like the club. Realizing this lifted a weight off my shoulders.
Still, I had to make sure that the one person who did like the place really liked it. In order to do that, I had to make my philosophy absolutely clear, and patiently maintain that philosophy no matter what. This is what I learned from running a business.
After "A Wild Sheep Chase," I continued to write with the same attitude that I'd developed as a business owner. And with each work my readership -- the one-in-ten repeaters -- increased.
You can't please everybody.
This is the most important thing I learned from the book.
When I first started Qu Jing, I really wished everyone would love our product. I tried hard to please people even if some of them were mean. Nevertheless, I quickly realized that there are always some people who don't like us no matter what. And pleasing them actually makes our business and fame worse.
Then it becomes obvious that we need to make our value and rules as clear as possible, and do everything we can to stick with them.
Frankly, on the moment I read this part, I was like: "This is awesome! I'm not alone."
Quitting smoking was like a symbolic gesture of farewell to the life I used to lead.
I'm struck by how, except when you're young, you really need to prioritize in life, figuring out in what order you should divide up your time and energy. If you don't get that sort of system set by a certain age, you'll lack focus and your life will be out of balance. I placed the highest priority on the sort of life that lets me focus on writing, not associating with all the people around me. I felt that the indispensable relationship I should build in my life was not with a specific person, but with an unspecified number of readers.
As long as I got my day-to-day life set so that each work was an improvement over the last, then many of my readers would welcome whatever life I chose for myself. Shouldn't this be my duty as a novelist, and my top priority? My opinion hasn't changed over the years. I can't see my readers' faces, so in a sense it's a conceptual type of human relationship, but I've consistently considered this invisible, conceptual relationship to be the most important thing in my life.
This is very much like product design and management, especially this "conceptual type of human relationship".
Emotional hurt is the price a person has to pay in order to be independent.
It's so true. As long as you are independent and have your own views, there must be someone who criticizes you, otherwise, it probably means that you have been following the crowd.
I used to tend to gain weight, but around that time my weight stabilized at where it should be. Exercising every day, I naturally reached my ideal weight, and I discovered this helped my performance...
As I said, if I don't do anything I tend to put on the pounds. My wife's the opposite, since she can eat as much as she likes (she doesn't eat a lot of them, but can never turn down any sweet), never exercise, and still not put on any weight. She has no extra fat at all. Life just isn't fair, is how it used to strike me.
Some people can work their butts off and never get what they're aiming for, while others can get it without any effort at all.
But when I think about it, having the kind of body that easily puts on weight was perhaps a blessing in disguise. In other words, if I don't want to gain weight I have to work out hard every day, watch what I eat, and cut down on indulgences. Life can be tough, but as long as you don't stint on the effort, your metabolism will greatly improve with these habits, and you'll end up much healthier, not to mention stronger. To a certain extent, you can even slow down the effects of aging. But people who naturally keep the weight off no matter what don't need to exercise or watch their diet in order to stay trim. There can't be many of them who would go out of their way to take these troublesome measures when they don't need to. Which is why, in many cases, their physical strength deteriorates as they age.
I have to say it's an exceptional point of view on this specific issue. By the way, as someone who finds it's extremely hard to get weight, I *hate* this perspective XD