Out With the Old and So On

Happy New Year!

The New Yorker's Amanda Petrusich, writing about Mariah Carey's "rather perfect farewell to 2016", mentioned the "instantaneous psychic cleansing" promised by the new year. "Many of us were hungry for it," she writes. Hell, yes. I feel like the stresses of the last year, especially the stresses (for me, personally) of the last quarter of 2016, bogged me down like a great, big weight. This was supposed to be a fun, happy space, but I didn't have the heart and energy to be fun and happy. It was a good year (for me, personally as well--it was a very strange year) but I'm glad to enter this new one.

November 2016

So, some highlights from the tail-end of December.

Visprint's Kwentong Komiks at The Book Stop, Alabang

Visprint authors traveled down south to talk about comics and say hi to readers. I've only been to Alabang only twice before: once to have lunch with J's aunt and parents, and once for a hotel stay during J's birthday weekend. I always see Alabang as, you know, an article behind a paywall--unless you really, really want to see it, you just turn away. Two factors: distance (it's farrr) and cost (the Skyway toll fee for Alabang is nearly 200 pesos each way, and Alabang itself is an expensive place).

For this excursion, we were hosted by The Book Stop, a traveling library:

The Book Stop Project refocuses on the core program of a library as a place for books and reading, a space for human interaction, and a platform for learning. In place of a huge monolithic building with an extensive collection, The Book Stop is a network of mobile spaces spread across the city each with garnering far more foot traffic than the typical library. In a modern society where no library or bookstore can beat the collection of books that are available online, The Book Stop refrains from trying to reinvent the purpose of libraries. It instead works on rethinking the physical architecture and the distribution system of libraries, emphasizing casual serendipity and ease of access. (Read more.) 

It's a library with a pretty cool design. You can donate a book and get another book in the library for free.

(Most of the photos below were from Princess Malonzo. Thanks!)

Kuha ni Princess Malonzo.
Here's Mervin Malonzo with Baby El inside The Book Stop.
Kwentuhang Komiks. December 10, 2016.
With my book date!

There were supposed to be four of us--me, Mervin of Tabi Po and our collaboration After Lambana, Kajo Baldisimo of Trese, and Manix Abrera of A LOT of Comics e.g. Kikomachine Komix--but unfortunately Manix was down with the flu.

Kuha ni Princess Malonzo.
Mervin, me, Kajo
Kuha ni Princess Malonzo.

It was a great discussion about the writing process, collaborations, evolving artistic styles, the use of technology in local comics production, the search for diverse stories in Filipino literature, and pushing the envelope in our storytelling. Thank you to everyone who dropped by and participated.

I took home some new books, a set of After Lambana postcards, and the miniature color-proof copy of After Lambana.

Kwentuhang Komiks. December 10, 2016. Kwentuhang Komiks. December 10, 2016.

On to more writing news:

After Lambana is included in Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Top 10 Books of 2016

Magic is prohibited after the diwata realm Lambana falls, but Conrad must find a way, legal or illegal, to save his life in one night accompanied by his friend Ignacio in this creepy, cerebral collaboration between “Dwellers” author Victoria and “Tabi Po” creator Malonzo. 
Read more: http://lifestyle.inquirer.net/248133/top-10-books-2016/#ixzz4UqweXajP
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

"Tiny Tragedies" on Kitaab

A new poem of mine is published on Singapore-based Kitaab. My thanks to the editors.

POC Take Over Flash Anthology

Fantastic Stories of the Imagination will be publishing a flash anthology featuring POC (people of color) writers. I am honored to be included in this roster. You can read my short short story here. 

Writers included in the Flash Anthology are:

Ananyo Bhattacharya
Carmen Maria Machado
Caroline M. Yoachim
Cassandra Khaw
Darcie Little Badger
Eliza Victoria
Indrapramit Das
James Beamon
Jeremy Sim
Jeremy Szal
José Pablo Iriarte
Julia Rios
Julie M. Rodriguez
Karlo Yeager Rodriguez
Kuzhali Manickavel
LaShawn M. Wanak
Laurie Tom
Malon Edwards
Naru Dames
Sundar Nicky Drayden
Richie Narvaez
S.B. Divya
S.L. Huang
Samuel Marzioli
Zina Hutton
Eve Shi

Guest editor is Nisi Shawl.

Fantastic Stories is running a Kickstarter campaign to fund special Take Over issues. You can check it out here
Fantastic Stories prides itself on being open to under represented voices. Science fiction and fantasy should encompass the totality of the human experience, in all of its diversity and complexity. Fantastic Stories is determined to explore a more inclusive, realistic vision of the future. Currently, Fantastic Stories is a bimonthly webzine paying fifteen cents per word for original fiction. To increase the visibility of our outreach to diverse voices, we have decided to run special Take Over issues that feature under represented demographics. These Take over issues will run in the off months of our regular issues.
And so

During the last days of December, we ate a lot and quietly ushered out 2016.

Other highlights:

My first ever play staged in the CCP for the Virgin LabFest
Publication of Wounded Little Gods and After Lambana
Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Komikon (summer, November)
National Book Store's Readers & Writers Fest
Amelia Lapeña-Bonifacio Writers Workshop
Story on 8List (first time to record a story)
First time to reach the bestsellers' list 
The Filipina Elsewhere Series
Hong Kong
Manila International Book Fair
We got engaged!
+ fantastic writing-related news I have to sit on for the meantime

May your new year be bright.

Cheese, candy, mulled wine

Fish balls, squid balls, kikiam; lechon and oyster sisig, crispy pork belly (Locavore)



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