Interview with Na'im Muhammad

When did you first start writing?
I first started writing books when I was 23, which was a while ago (chuckles)! It was a book about -- yes, you guessed it -- language learning. However, it was a serious flop, but I learnt much from my mistakes with that initial work.
What do you read for pleasure?
I know that I'm going to sound like a complete dork for this, but I really love to read about business and finance, in addition to language learning, of course. For instance, right now, I'm reading a Japanese book -- yes, all in Japanese (chuckles) -- about the Chinese economy and whether or not it's living up to the seemingly unrealistic goals set by the Chinese government. It's been a rather scathing critique thus far. I also like to read about language learning --particularly, the idea of immersion and how the traditional methods of studying languages have essentially been debunked by that one concept. In fact, if it weren't for that single concept, I would've never attained fluency in Japanese. So, in a sense, I'm really a fan of anything that is related to the advancement and development of humankind, whether it's business or language-related...or technology, even. I'm also a big fan of tech. #TeamApple! (laughs)
Describe your desk
My desk is actually in my bedroom; thus, I don't really have an office or anything of the sort. I know that a few other authors could perhaps relate to that previous statement (chuckles). However, sometimes, I leave my current residence to go to a nearby library on a uni campus. Coffee shops aren't necessarily outside of the realm of possibility, either. Regardless of the working location, my stuff is usually all over the place to the point where I can't even find certain things at times (chuckles). However, I usually place markers (for brainstorming sessions), composition notebooks, tonnes of paper, and my notebook computer in my immediate vicinity for convenience.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I actually don't remember the first story that I had ever read. It might have been "Green Eggs & Ham", but I would definitely say that one of the books that bore more of a significance in my life was "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" by Robert T. Kiyosaki. In fact, it's one of the books that has inspired me to begin writing and publishing my own books from way back in 2013 when I was still in university. All in all, "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" is a global best selling book and must read for anyone who is aspiring to change his or her life for the better. It's an amazing book! I highly recommend it!
How do you approach cover design?
Well, when I approach cover design, I typically think of an image that connects people, despite their backgrounds. For instance, during the cover design phase for the "How to Learn Languages" ebook, I tried to make sure that the black figures were similar to each other to symbolize the level of unity that we all share as people. The language bubbles that protrude from each figure show that our differences are superficial, at best. Recently, I've sort of shifted gears in the sense that now, I've begun to focus on the end result -- the dreams and goals of my potential readers, if you will -- as a way to attract them to the invaluable information which I have to offer them in each of my works. So, that's the general idea.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Oh, definitely my iPhone. Sometimes, I'd use my notebook [HP Stream] to read Kindle ebooks, but when it's dark at home, I usually just switch to my phone. And I know that the screen size might be an issue, but I don't know, I just feel more connected to my phone, you know? No pun intended, by the way. (chuckles)
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Baltimore (Maryland, USA), which is not necessarily recognized as a safe, hospitable place if you know what I mean (chuckles), but I was always a fan of reading and that definitely influenced my writing style, especially in the beginning. When I published my first book, you could definitely tell where I was mentally. I mean, I wrote in a really fancy prose, but I quickly learnt that people aren't really happy with that...unless, say, you're a fiction author. Then, you're off the hook in a sense. (chuckles)
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Well, Smashwords has provided me, as well as other like-minded independent authors, to establish names for themselves and reach out to their readers in a way that hasn't really been available before. It's a great community that cultivates an environment of giving and sharing writers' ideas with the rest of the world.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing to me is being able to potentially influence millions, if not billions, of people in a positive way through the words that I've personally created and organised.
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans are everything to me. They're the reason why I wake up every morning, to be quite honest. I don't know where I'd be without them, so they're truly appreciated.
What are you working on next?
I'm actually going to publish two new works this year, the first of which should be released next week. It's a spin-off of one of my previous books, "How to Learn Languages". Through the next two books, I'll seek to answer the question "if I lost my fluency in both English and Japanese, how would I go about restoring it?"...Thus, the next couple of works will be geared towards English and Japanese language students.
Who are your favorite authors?
My favourite authors are, unequivocally, Akira Ikegami and Patric Chan. I'm a huge fan of both of their books and I hope to meet them in person soon!
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Well, whenever I have a particular need that I need to address, I would search the Kindle store of the iBook Store to find recommended eBooks to read. It's not a special process, I'm sure, but it works for me and I typically follow through with the recommendations.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I actually haven't the faintest idea (chuckles). I'm sure that I probably wrote it in secondary school or something. It just doesn't seem to come to mind. I'm pretty sure that by the end of this interview, I should be able to recall it.
What is your writing process?
Usually, when I write a book, I want it to take on a conversational tone with the reader. To do that, I follow a rather esoteric sequence: first, I come up with a topic. Then, I might search for that topic on Google to see if people find that topic interesting. After that, I might create an outline of the book and record myself explaining each one. Subsequently, I'd transcribe and proofread the draft and get it edited. Finally, I would do some more editing by myself and get the book formatted. That's how I would typically write a book.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Honestly, the main reason for going indie was that I knew that it was perhaps the easiest and most cost-effective way for me to get my messages sent out to the world. I didn't want to have to knock on publishing companies' doors in order to get a manuscript read. To me, the reader's always first, not the companies. It's the reader who counts at the end of the day and I believe that becoming an indie author definitely enabled me to connect with the reader in a more personal and dynamic way. So, I'd like to thank Smashwords, among other platforms, for giving indie authors like me a voice and the opportunity change the world through our own views, knowledge, and insights.
Published 2016-06-22.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

How to Increase Your Productivity
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 3,020. Language: English. Published: June 16, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Engineering, trades, & technology » Electronics / Digital
Are you someone who is looking for new ways to boost your productivity? Do you need to be more organized and in control? With this imaginative and innovative new book, How to Boost Your Productivity, you can now look forward to effectively improving your efficiency in almost any area of your life.
How to Make Money Online with eBooks
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 6,690. Language: English. Published: December 3, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Personal finance
And when you’ve completed your masterpiece what next? How to Make Money Online with E-Books has the answer here too, with pages of advice and tips on where to find the best people to help you with things like cover designs and how to promote your work. You can make plenty of money selling E-Books, and How to Make Money Online with E-Books will guide you every step of the way.
How to Make Money Online as a Language Tutor
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 4,090. Language: English. Published: September 3, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Language Instruction » English as a second language
This ebook reveals how anyone can make money online as a language tutor. Simply by teaching your native language, you will be able to generate a stable income through the internet from anywhere in the world and at anytime. Buy "How to Make Money Online as a Language Tutor" to find out more.
How to Learn Languages: 7 Steps to Fluency
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 5,270. Language: English. Published: August 18, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Education & Study Guides » Distance & online education, Nonfiction » Education & Study Guides » Study guides - Foreign Languages
"How to Learn Languages: 7 Steps to Fluency" equips the modern day language learner with the most up to date strategies for attaining fluency in his or her target language. Regardless of the learner's current level, following the steps contained in "How to Learn Languages" will literally guarantee fluency in as many languages as the student desires.