Tuesday, February 23, 2010

help this year's edition of the iligan national writers workshop

For the first time after 14 years, the NCCA will not support the Iligan National Writers Workshop because of a technicality: the proponents failed to meet the August 31 deadline. Perhaps an oversight on the organizers’ part, but, the failure to meet the deadline was anchored on the presumption that the Iligan workshop, already institutionalized by the NCCA together with the U.P. and Silliman workshops, did not have to go through the process of an Open Grants competition.

The situation frustrated the organizers and panellists and was a letdown for the many aspiring writers who expected the workshop to be an opportunity to hone their craft.

After unsuccessfully appealing the NCCA decision, I tried to convince my peers during a meeting of the NCCA Committee on Literary Arts that the mandate to develop writing in this country was not ours but government’s through the NCCA. If the NCCA did not wish to support our advocacies, why stress ourselves in forcing the issue? After all, scratching off the program will be the country’s loss, not ours. I tried to convince my peers to consider Commissioner Ricky de Ungria’s suggestion to postpone the workshop to next year but meet the deadline for proposals.

But the tenacity and relentlessness of a Christine Godinez-Ortega and her company refused postponement and moved the proverbial heaven-and-earth to realize this year’s workshop.

Writers and friends have come to the rescue willing to spend personal funds for transport, board and accommodations. Personal funds have been pledged to support the fellows and the workshop’s operations. There may not be enough resources from our donors for support, but one thing is certain: the workshop will push through on May 24-28.

I have joined her advocacy and appeal, and will donate my services gratis and perhaps, if personal resources allow, sponsor a fellow or two.

Attached here is her letter of appeal for support. This advocacy is contagious. I hope it infects your spirit too. Please help writing and our writers.

Member, NCCA Committee on Literary Arts


Please email Christine Godinez-Ortega at cgodinezortega@gmail.com if you can help. Any help, any amount is welcome in order for the INWW to be realized once more this year. The following have pledged their support to fund the travel, board and lodging of a writing fellow from their respective schools, regions and organizations for the duration of the INWW: Phil Harold L. Mercurio and Voltaire Oyzon, Hope Sabanpan Yu,Elsa Victoria Martinez Coscolluela, Leoncio P. Deriada, Carlo Arejola, Ricardo Jorge S. Caluen, Maria C. Buenafe, Chari Cruz Lucero, Servando Halili, Rebecca Anonuevo, Glenn Sevilla Mas, and John Iremil Teodoro.

The INWW will likewise ask for representatives and funding support from the following institutions: Ateneo de Manila University c/o Christine S. Bellen, Ateneo de Davao University c/o Macario Tiu, Ateneo de Cagayan-Xavier University c/o Hobart P. Savior, University of Santo Tomas c/o Lito Zulueta, and Capitol University c/o Atty. Jun Juarez.

The panelists and keynote speaker have likewise pledged to spend their own transportation, board and lodging, and, they are, like the staff, giving their services for free: Chari Cruz Lucero, Macario Tiu, Merlie M. Alunan, Leoncio P. Deriada, Karl Gaspar, Victor N. Sugbo, Lawrence Ypil, Carlo Arejola, and Steven Fernandez.

[post originally taken from Ian Rosales Casocot]

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

mandatory post-valentine blog entry

This is not supposed to be an obligatory post, especially about that date when bouquets of flowers are much more expensive than my workday lunch, but seeing that I haven’t written anything in here for a long time I might as well get into the fair.

If there’s anything significant on the 14th of February, it is simply the fact that it follows my father’s birthday. He’s turned 56 today. And on the fourteenth itself, it is also the birthday of someone I know who I’ve tagged along with to participate in a college Valentine songwriting competition three years ago only to fail right at the very start of the screening period. Aside from these, there’s nothing else I could think of.

I am neither dense nor jaded not to notice its sugary presence with Hallmark messages crisscrossing the country (or all over the world), or tearjerker primetime telenovelas raking up ratings from the masa with their supposed universal theme, or endless songs of lost and newfound love serenading many jeepneys. Heck, it is even linked to “Up to 70% Off” mall sales and discount packages in hotels (and motels).

My nonchalance to the whole festivity is a—hold your breath for the coming word—choice.

Yes, it is my choice not to entertain sudden appearances of “attic acquaintances” (people casually linked to your social web for a while then left in a corner for good out of ennui) in my inbox, unanswered calls and messages in my phone, or even seedlings of short talks in some gatherings. Someone might call me lackluster, or even conceited, but I guess I am through with those things. For me, they are like rain in a sunny morning; they are arresting at first and instantly draining next.

As the last ray of light from the sun took its last wave yesterday in the horizon, I left the open window and went downstairs to watch Simpsons. It was just another day, only a little bit different because many people were just too caught up with Cupid’s consumerism. As to how an acquaintance puts it, the 14th of February might as well be Singlehood Awareness Day.

I know what I’ve said may paint a bad picture of me but, I like to share, I still keep them coming: the appearances, the messages, the calls, the short talks.

No harm’s done anyway.

Monday, February 01, 2010

call for entries to the 10th iyas creative writing workshop

Be One of the 15 Fellows of the 10th IYAS Creative Writing Workshop. This will be held on April 25-May 01, 2010 at the University of St. La Salle, Bacolod City.

• Applicants should submit original work: either 6 poems, 2 short stories, or 2 one-act play using a pseudonym, in five (5) computer-encoded copies of entries; font size 12, bound or fastened, in separate folders, and soft copies in a CD (MSWord).

• These are to be accompanied by a sealed size 10 business envelope with the author's real name and pseudonym, a 2x2 ID photo, and short resume, which must be mailed on or before March 12, 2010.

• Entries in Cebuano, Hiligaynon, Kinaray-a, Tagalog, or Filipino may be submitted. Fellowships are awarded by genre and by language.

• The grant covers board and lodging and a partial transportation subsidy.

Prof. John Iremil Teodoro Dr. Genevieve L. Asenjo
Dr. Elsa Coscolluela Dr. Dinah Roma-Sianturi
Dr. D.M.Reyes Dr. Anthony Tan

Submit your Application to:
glofuentes2003@yahoo.com Dr. Gloria Fuentes
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academics Affair
University of St. La Salle, La Salle Avenue, Bacolod City