Lolong Anjing di Bulan

Book Description

Dari tahun 1989 sampai 2002, Nazir menyaksikan sejarah kelam bangkitnya pemberontakan di kampung halamannya. Dia putra tunggal seorang petani di Alue Rambe, kampung terpencil di pegunungan Aceh Utara sebelah selatan kota Lhokseumawe.

Ayah Nazir menafkahi keluarganya dari hasil berkebun dan berladang dengan menanam kelapa, pinang, kemiri, padi gunung, dan kunyit.

Munculnya pemberontakan, yang terkenal sebagai Gerakan Aceh Merdeka, seketika mengubah kehidupan seluruh penghuni kampung.

Arkam, adik ibu Nazir, adalah seorang pemberontak yang menghasut penduduk untuk melawan tentara yang dikirim dari Jakarta untuk membasmi pemberontakan. Arkam membujuk Ayah untuk menerima jabatan camat dalam Gerakan Aceh Merdeka.

Arkam terlibat dalam penyerangan markas tentara di Krueng Tuan pada 26 September 1989 dan di Buloh Blang Ara pada 28 Mei 1990. Tentara mengamuk atas serangan itu; mereka membalas serangan pemberontak yang menyebabkan penduduk kampung dicengkeram ketakutan siang dan malam. Akhirnya Arkam tertangkap dan dibunuh tentara dalam perjalanan pulang dari menjenguk ibunya yang sekarat.

Nazir, yang waktu itu masih siswa SMP, hanya mampu menyaksikan betapa parahnya kehidupan orang-orang di sekitarnya. Dia akrab dengan keluarganya dan rajin membantu Ayah di ladang. Ayah menekankan pentingnya pendidikan kepadanya.

Melihat Ayah yang menderita akibat bujukan Arkam, yaitu untuk menjadi camat dalam gerakan pemberontak, membuat hati Nazir resah tidak menentu. Terlebih saat sejumlah serdadu memerkosa kakaknya dan membunuh Ayah, jiwa Nazir begitu hebat terguncang. Kehilangan gadis cinta pertamanya yang terseret dalam pergaulan bebas dengan tentara menyebabkan dendamnya terhadap tentara semakin membara.

Setelah Ayah tewas, Nazir terpaksa menggantikan tanggung-jawab ayahnya sebagai kepala keluarga. Susah payah dia menyelesaikan SMA yang ditempuhnya sambil bekerja di ladang dengan bantuan ipar, ibu, dan dua kakaknya. Sementara itu, kerusuhan akibat perseteruan antara pemerintah dan pemberontak terus berlanjut, dan kekacauan itu menyebarkan penderitaan pada rakyat Aceh; korban pun terus berjatuhan setiap harinya.
Dalam keterpurukan hidup dan terperangkap dalam buruknya keadaan, Nazir tetap bersekolah dan bekerja di ladang. Dia merindukan ketenangan dan kedamaian dengan hidup tanpa ketakutan.


Product Detail

  • Price: Rp.85.000.00
  • Paperback: 343 pages
  • Publisher: Danata Dharma University Press & Dalang Publishing
  • Language: Indonesian
  • ISBN: 978-602-5607-43-1
  • Product dimensions: 20 x 14 x 2 cm
  • Shipping weight: 0.5 kg



Semarang Keynote

Semarang, November 7, 2018

Keynote: Celebrating Language Month with Renewing the Youth Pledge

Lian Gouw

Universitas PGRI

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.

I’m grateful to the administration of PGRI University, in particular to Pak Prasetyo and Ibu Maria Yosephin, for this opportunity to discuss a concern that is foremost in my mind and directs my everyday conduct. This concern is the importance of protecting the sanctity of our Indonesian language from undue infiltration from the English language. Today’s lifestyle tends to gear toward globalization, rather than preserving our own culture and language.

I’m aware of the resistance from academia, government officials, and everyday people toward my effort. However, it works better for me to follow my heart than to win a popularity contest.

After several encounters with various individuals, including close friends who are professionals in the language field, I decided to figure out why I’m so bothered by what I see as an abuse of our language. I came up with the following.

Perhaps it all starts with my own language experience. Life has made me keenly aware of the all-important role language plays in our everyday lives. Language is the most important tool in communication. To stifle someone is similar to destroying his soul. From ancient times till today, language is the most powerful secret weapon to overthrow the enemy.

Examples include:

– God brought the Babylonians to their senses by destroying their language

– The Dutch forced their language upon us during colonization

– People of occupied countries during WWII were forced to learn German and Japanese    At the onset of our independence, President Soekarno declared Bahasa Indonesia the official language of the Republic of Indonesia. With his wisdom, President Soekarno realized that we, a nation spread across more than 17,500 islands, between Sabang and Merauke, needed a strong, unifying allegiance to help us hold our own against other large countries. He led us Indonesians to unity with our coat of arms that reads Bhinneka Tunggal Ika — Unity in Diversity — urging us to unite under one flag and communicate in one official language, Bahasa Indonesia.

I’m in total agreement that every language needs constant development to serve a growing nation. This growth, in turn, introduces new words and terminology. And here, then, lies the task of our linguists to come up with words and phrases that still represent our language not only in cadence and sound, but also in the way we think. This takes expertise and a lot more than merely sandwiching an English word between an Indonesian prefix and/or suffix.

In my opinion, our lackadaisical attitude toward our native language is rooted in our reluctance to put out the effort and our desire to appear as someone with a Western education.

I wonder why neither the sound nor the cadence of words — such as memfokus, berkommunikasi, ngeprin, webset — don’t bother anyone and why their use is preferred over the traditional Indonesian memusatkan perhatian, berhubungan, mencetak, situs.

Our linguists are not only tasked to search for a word that fits in our language, but as Indonesian citizens, also to be responsible gatekeepers of the Kamus Besar Bahasa Indonesia, the official Indonesian Dictionary.

From conversations about this topic with several linguists, language teachers, students, government officials, and workers in the private sector, I came away with the following troubling observations.

I seldom met anyone who shared my concerns. For the most part, people just shrugged their shoulders and said, “Oh, well, that’s the way it is. We can’t really do anything about it.”

This solicited my emphatic reaction: “Of course there is! We can do a lot! Start by not joining those who destroy our language. Second, counter their actions by setting an example and refusing to participate in their inappropriate behavior.”

The following responses really saddened and alarmed me.

“Dengan use kata-kata itu, kita kan menunjukkan kita tidak ketinggalan zaman. Kita hidup now, bersifat global…, berpendidikan….” (Translation: “By using those words, we show we are progressive. Using those words, we prove to be a part of today; we show ourselves as being global and well-educated.)

Another student said, “Me-use word bahasa asing kan cool, Bu!” (Translation: “Don’t you think that using foreign words is cool?”)

Good God, help me. If this student — a product of his parents’ and teachers’ upbringing — is supposed to be a pillar of our future society, what kind of a future can our country and nation hope for? The situation dismays and concerns me, especially because, while pondering this issue, I cannot ignore the sacrifices of our forebearers who bequeathed us our independence and, as a result, granted us the right to freely use our own language.

Born in an independent country, our youth take for granted the fruits of their ancestors’ toil for freedom. Able to freely enjoy the amenities of independence, perhaps it is difficult for our youth to be mindful of the past and be grateful for their living conditions.

This, then, is my lament regarding the use (and miss-use) that our language receives in dialogue and on the page, in formal as well as in mundane matters.

It is easy to launch complaints or fret about things one doesn’t agree with. Coming up with a solution to the problem is much more difficult. To me, complaining without offering a solution is useless, and I usually respond to complaints by asking the complainer, “So what do you plan to do about it?”

I was very happy, therefore, when I came up with several possible solutions to the Indonesian language infiltration dilemma.

Operating from the students’ reactions during our conversation and the fact that students play a big role in the future of our country, I asked myself, Why does this young person think like that? What makes them think that using foreign words in their conversation will depict them as educated or debonair? I came up with the following answers.

  1. It is Indonesian public opinion that the use of bastardized Indonesian words is a sign of being educated and alludes to the fact the person has a Western education or, at the least, fraternizes with foreigners.
  2. There is no love or pride in regards to our own language.
  3. Despite the fact that Indonesia has been independent for 73 years, we still suffer the consequences of colonialization, which erased our self-worth and pride. Colonialism instilled in us that we are worthless and taught us that unless we adapted the colonialists’ lifestyle, we would not be treated equal.

Based on the above, I conclude that our language is in a precarious situation.

  1. As a nation, we still suffer from a lack of self-worth
  2. Indolence is a characteristic of people who live in the tropics

With this knowledge, what can we do to remedy the problem?

I feel that it is vital to reignite the fire of nationalism that lit our revolution — the blazing fire that provided Indonesian people with hope, self-confidence, and the courage to break free from the tyranny of colonialism. It is time to rekindle the fire that President Soekarno started during those days of revolution.

By rebuilding nationalism and national pride, the desire to protect and serve our country will be awakened; and self-respect will automatically be fostered. The school system, starting with kindergarten and ending in higher education institutions, is an excellent growing ground for the seed of nationalism. Geography, history, cultural, and language studies are all avenues to awaken nationalism.

I still remember, when growing up, how careful we were to only speak proper Dutch. Mispronunciation or inappropriate word or phrase usage resulted in insults. We therefore did everything we could to meet the Dutch standard.

It therefore puzzles me that we now don’t seem to apply this notion to our own language. I am saddened by the realization that not only youngsters are guilty of violating our language, but adults are also very much guilty of committing the same crime.

Proper language should be used at all times. During colonial times, it would have been impossible for anyone to obtain a desk job without proper language skills. In the publishing world, a mastery of language is obviously a must.

Now, what is a “mastery of language”?

As a publisher, I consider someone to master a language if they, aside from being able to speak and write in that language, also has a full understanding of what is written in that language. Some who master a language, other than understanding what is said and written in that language, also can think, feel, see, hear, and touch in that language. In other words, one lives the language one masters.

In his poem “Immigrant Blues,” Li-Young Lee, an American poet born in Jakarta, says about learning a foreign language, “Practice until you feel the language inside you…”

He doesn’t say, “until you can understand, speak, or write it.” No, he says, “Until you feel.” Only after one has acquired this relationship with a language, does one master it.

Before we, as a nation, start chasing dreams of becoming citizens of the world —especially in the areas of literature — and set out to explore and embrace other foreign cultures and languages, let us pause a moment to focus on how much we know about our own culture, and what kind of mastery we have of our own language.

With the great probability that Indonesian parents use English-corrupted Indonesian language in their communication with their children, it seems that today, teaching our youth to master our mother tongue has become problematic. This problem becomes even bigger when parents send their children to an international school where, of course, English is used as the working language, and Indonesian is most likely not in the curriculum.

Because I subscribe to the English saying, You need to walk the talk, meaning, you need to act and do as you say, I execute what I believe might keep our language from vanishing and remaining independent. I take great care in my everyday Indonesian communications, and particularly those as a publisher, to use proper Indonesian language.

My actions are motivated by a fierce sense of nationalism and a deep love for the country of my birth.

I’d like to end my talk by, together, renewing the vow of the Indonesian youth, 90 years ago. On October 28, 1928, they pledged, Kami Poetra dan Poetri Indonesia, mendjoenjoeng bahasa persatoean, Bahasa Indonesia.” — We, the sons and daughters of Indonesia, respect the language of unity, Indonesian.



November 9, 2018 –

Launch Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur

Hosted by University of Sanata Dharma Dies Natalis Program.

Dra. Novita Dewi, M.S., M.A.(Hons), Ph.D.

Review Lolong Anjing di Bulan – English Language Translation

As Lolong Anjing di Bulan is my introduction to Arafat Nur’s writing, I can’t compare it to any of his other work, some of which have won literary awards. From this one novel, I draw the conclusion that Nur writes with one thing, and one thing only, in mind: love. He loves his world — the world of words. He loves life and, above all, he loves mankind.

In Lolong Anjing di Bulan, the Aceh landscape appears vividly on the page. Readers who are used to the scenery of paddy fields, fodder crops, and trenches — typical of Java countryside — will be taken by the difference in the Acehnese landscape depicted in this novel. The everyday life of a population of farmers, placed amid turmeric fields, coconut groves, and plots of mountain rice, immediately engages the reader. Nazir, the narrator, as well as his parents and sisters are vividly present. The reader can also easily envision the story of Nazir’s grandfather and grandmother, whose lives end tragically.

Because Nur’s writing finds its essence in love, I did not find the passages that described violence — such as reducing a body to bloody, broken bones — excessive. While Nur addresses neither the government’s nor the rebels’ brutality harshly, his powerful writing still stirs the reader’s conscience.

Every human being is called upon to protect and love the life God has endowed us with. God, alone, is the owner of life. War denies all of this. From the very beginning, this novel attests to the vanity of war. We are supposed to highly regard the culture of life, and war is a celebration of death.

From the many eloquent passages in which Nur describes Aceh’s dark history, my favorite is the description of a harvest in his grandfather’s banana orchard. While the writing here turns anthropocentric, it still describes life. In the interest of time, I will simply quote a paragraph.

Once every three months, a banana wholesaler would come in a Chevrolet pickup with two workers dressed in dark uniforms. The two workers would walk through the orchard, looking for banana clusters that were ready to be harvested. With their sharp machetes, they expertly cut through the soft trunks of banana plants. The first slash was applied with measured strength, in the middle of the trunk, and left the plant still erect. The slanted, second slash caused the plant to bend slowly, as if offering its fruit respectfully. (Nur p.124 Blood Moon over Aceh)

I’m still trying to figure out why this passage affects me so much. While I haven’t pondered intensively over the author’s metaphor, I feel it is safe to assume that here, Nur tells his reader that if nature is treated kindly, it will treat us well in return. The bountiful harvest which provides the family with a livelihood is the result of the grandfather’s painstaking care of the banana grove. Ironically, it is in that exact banana grove that little Nazir is introduced to the meaning of the word resistance.

The passage describes frightened young Nazir witnessing soldiers pillaging his grandfather’s banana grove while unsuccessfully looking for rebels. When the soldiers take off with a bunch of ripe bananas, Nazir understands why the Acehnese rebels are not afraid of the soldiers. They do not believe that the military presence was meant to protect the people. With his young mind, Nazir concludes that war derives from a passion to resist. A notion much stronger than fear.

This novel is a statement of reconciliation evidenced by Nur representing both sides equally on the page: the villagers’ hatred and fear, and the angry frustration of determined, uniformed individuals persecuting rebels who seem to be present everywhere.

Nur points out the succession of calamities that would befall a family if one of the family members joined the resistance movement. As a result of Nazir’s uncle Arkam being a commander in the rebellion, Nazir loses all of his loved ones. The army, without mercy, eliminated everyone suspected of being a rebel.

Nazir is not motivated by revenge when he decides to take up weapons. Yearning for life, he wants to end the perpetuation of killing and acts on si vis pacem, para bellum – if you want peace, prepare for war.

I conclude that through Lolong Anjing di Bulan, Nur encourages everyone to read as much as possible. Literature indeed enriches the imagination while discouraging intolerance. Nur provides us with examples of this in his writing, which is a testament of his own deep love for literature, life, and humanity.


Indonesia 2018

Our 2018 Trip Home


In November 2018, Dalang went home for the launch of Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur. This publication is a collaborative effort between Dalang Publishing and Sanata Dharma University Press in Yogyakarta. Blood Moon over Aceh, the English translation by Maya Denisa Saputra, publishes in January 2019.

We visited the novel’s setting in Aceh and promoted the work through seminars, lectures, and book discussions, in cities on Java and Sumatra.


Jakarta, November 5, 2018

In Jakarta at midday on Monday, November 5, 2018. Pak Nono, Ibu Lian’s nephew, his wife, Oeke, and Riri Satria, met at the Soekarno Hatta International Airport. They kept us company while waiting for our flight to Semarang later that afternoon. Thank you Riri, Pak Nono, and Mbak Oeke.


Semarang, November 7, 2018

National Seminar: Introducing the Indonesian Language and Literature to the World.

Hosted by: The Faculty of Language Education and Art of Universitas PGRI Semarang.

Dalang are grateful for the assistance of Dr. Prasetyo Utomo, a writer and lecturer at this university, for initiating Dalang’s participation in this event.

Pak Arisul met Ibu Lian at the Semarang Airport and drove to Roemah Keboen, well-known for its authentic Semarang cuisine, where Ibu Maria Yosephin Widarti, chair of the seminar, was already waiting for us.

This national seminar was held in context of celebrating our language. In her keynote Merayakan Bulan Bahasa dengan Mengulang Soempah Pemoeda, Celebrating Language Month with Renewing the Youth Pledge — Second Youth Congress on October 28, 1928, Ibu Lian stressed the importance of protecting the sanctity of the Indonesian language from undue infiltration by the English language, due to the current climate of living in globalization and a focus on economic growth.

We introduced Lolong Anjing di Bulan and its English translation Blood Moon over Aceh.



Yogyakarta, November 9, 2018

The Launch of Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur was a part of the 2018 Dies Natalis program of Universitas Sanata Dharma.

It was an honor to have the opening remarks presented by the Rector of the Sanata Dharma University, Drs. Johanes Eka Priyatma, M.Sc., Ph.D.

We extend our gratitude to Vice Chancellor IV, F.X. Ouda Teda Ena, M.Pd., Ed.D. and his office staff, especially Elin, for their great help during the entire process of this publication.

Lolong Anjing di Bulan /Blood Moon over Aceh was introduced by a panel consisting of Arafat Nur, the author, Dr. Junaedi Setiyono, M.Pd. the editor, Maya Denisa Saputra, the translator, and Poet /Activist Zubaidah Djohar, one of the back cover reviewers. Dra. Novita Dewi, M.S., M.A.(Hons), Ph.D. represented the University of Sanata Dharma Press with an in-depth review. Lian Gouw represented Dalang Publishing and acted as panel moderator.



Sumatra, November 10 – 18, 2018.

We are grateful for the company of Zubaidah Djohar during our visit to Sumatra. Aside from having lived in Aceh for many years, Zubaidah has also done intensive research at, among others, the Aceh Institute on the Aceh Conflict. She provided us with an excellent guide for our visit to Alue Rambe, near Lhokseumawe.


Aceh, November 10 – 15, 2018

Banda Aceh

Dalang met Dr.Ir. M. Dirhamsyah, MT a lecturer at the University of Syiah Kuala and a former dean at Universitas Islam Negeri Ar-Raniry. Pak Dirham connected Dalang to Ar-Raniry and provided with a competent driver/guide during our stay at Banda Aceh. Ibu Lian spent a wonderful evening filled with friendship and graced with a delicious dinner with him and his lovely wife, Dian.



We appreciate the time Prof. Eka Srimulyani, one of the back cover reviewers of Lolong Anjing di Bulan as well as Blood Moon over Aceh, took out of her busy schedule to meet with us over a delicious lunch.


On Sunday, November 11, 2018, Pak Rizwan, our driver /guide, expertly showed us around Banda Aceh. We started the day with a visit to beautiful Lampuuk beach under clear blue skies. Next on our sightseeing list were the historic house of the Acehnese heroine Cut Nyak Dhien, the Aceh tsunami museum, and the grand mosque Baiturrahman.

While a monsoon rain poured out of a sudden dark sky, Pak Rizwan made sure we had a chance to savor delicious Aceh food for lunch. By the time we reached the mosque, the downpour had turned into a very light drizzle but had left the entrance and mosque plaza pretty puddled. After making sure we had covered ourselves appropriately and taken off our shoes, Pak Rizwan escorted us onto the mosque property.


Lampuuk beach


Acehnese heroine, Cut Nyak Dhien’s historical house


The mass grave site for the victims of the 2004 mega tsunami


Aceh Tsunami Museum


The Grand Mosque Baiturrahman


Banda Aceh, November 12, 2018

Open Lecture on writing.

Hosted by: the Faculty of Dakwah at the University of Ar-Raniry

We are grateful for Pak Dirham’s introduction to Dr. Hendra Syahputra, Head of the Department of Communication and Islamic Studies, Faculty of Dakwah, at the University of Ar-Raniry.

Pak Hendra invited Ibu Lian to give an open lecture on writing, which was well received by the attending class and faculty. It was deeply heartwarming when, at the end of the event, Roni, one of the students, presented Ibu Lian with a sketch of her reading from Only A Girl, her own novel.



Banda Aceh, November 13, 2018

Seminar on Publishing and Book Discussion of Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur.

Hosted by the University of Syiah Kuala.

Zubaidah Djohar and Acehnese award-winning author Azhari Ayyub, (Kura-Kura Berjanggut, Penerbit Banana, 2018) joined us at this event, organized by Herman Rusli Nuriam, a published author of short stories and lecturer of Indonesian literature, at the University of Syiah Kuala.

The students’ enthusiasm about writing and their interest in literature was encouraging.


Alue Rambe, November 14, 2018

This was a long awaited, very special day for us. Activist Zulfikar Muhammad, our competent and well connected guide had arranged a meeting with the Village Head and Elders of Alue Rambe as well as Bapak Abdussalam, one of the many villagers who have supported and inspired Arafat Nur during the writing of Lolong Anjing di Bulan.

Having a conversation with people who still have a direct connection with Nur’s vivid account of history but have risen above history’s monstrosities was an unnerving experience. As was standing on the same soil the characters of Nur’s novel endured and walking across the same paths they fled to safety.

As publishers, we are grateful for Nur’s courage to write the story and humbled by his trust in us to bring it properly to the page. We feel a deep responsibility to help spread his warning against greed and acknowledgement that only love and justice will bring much needed peace.


West Sumatra, November 15 -18, 2018

During our stay here we visited several historical places:

Amai Setia in Koto Gadang, the first school for girls founded by Rohana Kudus, the first woman journalist in Indonesia. It was fun to imagine Belenggu Emas /The Golden Shackle, Iksaka Banu’s short story on the Your Stories page of our website, while sitting on a bench in the now curio shop but once must have been the living room where two Dutch socialites waited for Rohana Kudus to come home.


Rumah Puisi Taufik Ismail, Taufik Ismail’s House of Poetry, in Aie Angek, Padang Panjang.

A winding, narrow, country road led us through thin fog to a wonderful little library of the poet’s work. The adjacent cottages are an ideal writer’s retreat.



Fort de Kock in Bukittinggi, an old colonial fortress above Bukitttinggi in its current setting was a disappointment. Other than a few canons, very little reminded the visitor of the fort’s history.



Lake Singkarak, made us think of Love, Death, and Revolution, Stefani Irawan’s English language translation of Maut dan Cinta by Mochtar Lubis. (Dalang Publishing 2015) The lake was an important location in the novel.



Lastly, we visited Istana Pagaruyung, the Minangkabau palace in Pagaruyung, Batusangkar.

It was dusk when we arrived at the gates of this 17th century impressive piece of architecture that has survived several fires. We admired the ornate interior carvings, the displayed textiles and ornaments and imagined their functionality in life then. Evening quickly wrapped the area in a mystical glow and sent us home filled with wonder and curiosity about the past.



Saturday, December 17, 2018.

We spent the morning at the beautiful Air Manis beach, also known as Malin Kundang beach in Padang. Unfortunately, the rock formation that reminds us of the Malin Kundang legend is surrounded by food stalls and therefore very hard to photograph. The rock formation shows a man laying prostrate asking forgiveness from his mother for insulting her. According to the story the man refused to see his mother after returning to his village as a rich man.

Later that afternoon, we met with Padang Literati.

Meeting Padang Literati.

Zubaidah Djohar arranged a small get together at the Kubik Kafe with Padang literati and young aspiring writers they mentor.

Muhammad Ibrahim Ilyas is a published, award-winning playwright and the recipient of the Indonesian Literary Award 2017, Board of Language, Drama Category.

Dr. Hermawan, M. Hum., lecturer of Indonesian Language and Literature at The School of Teacher Training and Education and Chair of the West Sumatra Chapter Association of Indonesian Literary Scholars, is also a known Padang literary critic.

The informal, intimate setting was conducive for a lively exchange at a personal level on several topics, such as publication standards, the use of language on the page, and a writer’s expectations of work and goals. The afternoon was an enriching experience, and we hope our contact with this group will last long into the future.



Yogyakarta, November 19, 2018

Guest Lecture for the Creative Writing Class at the Dept. of Indonesian Literature.

Universitas Sanata Dharma


We thank Ibu Peni and Pak Yapi for giving Ibu Lian the opportunity to work with their students as a guest lecturer on the process of writing with the goal to publish. Aside from addressing the main elements of fiction, Ibu Lian also stressed the importance of using proper Indonesian rather than words corrupted by the English language.

A lively dialogue between her and the students ensued after the lecture.

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Purworejo, November 21, 2018

Workshop on Utilizing the Elements of Fiction to write Engaging Reports.

Hosted by Universitas Muhammadiyah Purworejo – UKM Jurnalistik Sinar Surya

We thank Pak Junaedi Setiyono for the introduction to Pak Andrian who teaches journalism at the Universitas Muhammadiyah in Purworejo and invited Ibu Lian to do the above mentioned workshop with his class.

Ibu Lian offered a copy of Dasamuka by Junaedi Setiyono (Penerbit Ombak & Dalang Publishing 2017) and a copy of Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur (Sanata Dharma University Press & Dalang Publishing 2018) as prizes for the best writing and the most engaged student.

Trasta Diah chose Lolong Anjing di Bulan for her winning of the best written workshop writing exercise. The following is her take on the workshop.


For most people, reading newspapers or magazines is boring. But, I do enjoy reading novels, especially Lolong Anjing di Bulan by Arafat Nur.

At the workshop organized by UKM Jurnalistik Sinar Surya Universitas Muhammadiyah Purworejo, on Wednesday, November 21st, 2018, my fellow students were given the opportunity to pretend to be journalists.

The material Ibu Lian presented was very engaging. She explained in detail how to write a news article accurately. It was also interesting that Ibu Lian who lives abroad encouraged us to use proper Indonesian for all our communication and writing. Thank you Ibu Lian and Pak Jun for inspiring us.

Diki Bayu Aji was rewarded for his enthused participation with a copy of Dasamuka. The following is his take on the workshop.


I’m proud to have attended a workshop on the implementation of the elements of writing in journalism. I often find reading, especially news, boring. The workshop taught me how to avoid boring my readers.

Ibu Lian Gouw explained that in order to write news accurately, we need to engage the three senses we are born with: to see, hear and feel. I’m also inspired by Ibu Lian, who despite having lived outside of Indonesia for so long, still emphasizes to love the Indonesian language with the same spirit we vowed in the Sumpah Pemuda, the Youth Pledge. The workshop inspired me to continue to write and my win of the novel Dasamuka by Pak Jun, strengthens this intent. Thank you Ibu Lian Gouw and Bapak Junaedi Setiyono.

After the event, the rector of the Universitas Muhammadiyah Purworejo, Drs. H. Supriyono, M.Pd, invited Ibu Lian and Pak Jun to his office.

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Jakarta, November 23, 2018

Open Discussion – How can Indonesian Writers reach American Readers?

Hosted by: Dapur Sastra Jakarta

Pusat Dokumentasi Sastra HB Jassin

Taman Ismail Marzuki

Riri Satria, an old high school friend of Tuti and the administrator of Dapur Sastra Jakarta, a community of poets and writers, invited us to their monthly meeting to introduce Dalang, Lolong Anjing di Bulan /Blood moon over Aceh and have an open discussion with attendees regarding the novel, writing related issues, publishing in general, and translation requirements.

The meeting was well attended. Riri moderated the animated discussion which gave us a chance to share our mission and members a chance to talk about their work. This, in turn, allowed us to meet several talented writers.

Pak Diky Lukman, Kepala Satuan Pelaksana Pusat Dokumentasi Sastra H.B Jassin, Head, Operational Unit H.B. Jassin’s Center of Literary Documentation, showed documents with the original handwriting of the poet Chairil Anwar (1940s.) It was not only a pleasure but also a great privilege to see the handwriting of the great Indonesian poet.

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This was our last event on our 2018 visit home. We came back to the USA tired, but enriched, from our 2018 month-long travel back home on a packed, tight schedule and look forward to going home later this year.

We wish you all a healthy, happy and fulfilling 2019.