Yesterday I received a little surprise from the mail man. I got this book. And published in this book is my short fiction piece “The Forgiving.” I have genuinely forgotten I have written this piece. How timely it is to receive this on August, which is considered to be our country’s Buwan ng mga Akdang Pinoy. Ubod, which literally means “bamboo shoots,” is a product of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts’ (NCCA) goal to showcase emerging voices in Philippine literature from across the archipelago. I am surprised and humbled to be part of this collection, to be one of the few featured writers from Central Visayas, considering what I have contributed to this anthology is a product of a genre writing challenge sometime in 2011 to 2012, during the productive years of LitCritters Dumaguete. I have not written much like in those days, especially fiction, with my routines and habits these days almost bursting to the seams already. But I guess this is a sign to get back into it. I am still mastering this craft, and I hope I can contribute more and better works through the years, to do my part as a practicing writer.
With that in mind, I am thankful for the writers Shane Carreon for giving me the heads up just a few days ago that I am actually published in this book, Haidee Palapar for calling my attention about the deadline for submissions almost four years ago, Hope Sabanpan-Yu and Lolita Go for relaying me to the editor on how to get my complimentary copy, and ultimately, NCCA, Juliet Mallari, Alex Dacanay, and Victor Sugbo for including me in this anthology. And also, Edgar Samar for pushing the celebration Buwan ng mga Akdang Pinoy forward into national discourse. We need more of this.