Learn, Write, and Complete a Story (Part 2)

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As I grew more familiar with the rich sources of knowledge and interesting tales through various books, novels, and even scripts from plays, I searched for more opportunities to explore and improve my own writing skills. But, there are a lot of times that I get stuck.

The Characters and the Plot

It may be a good start for any piece of writing by having some images of the main characters and getting an idea for the general flow of the story. This is how I usually begin my work. I meet new people who may have a resemblance to the people around me or to my own. Sometimes, it’s sad that I had to give my pain to them as I find ways to build them up again for far greater challenges which lead to wonderful memories as well as better understanding of others and themselves. But, what happens when I forget some of these characters along the way. Many have haunted me, others simply just quieted down to the deepest parts of my mind. Here, I lose the work I’ve started. I get stuck.

Writing, Typing Aimlessly

Habit is an important factor in making any piece of writing work. This is where I am still lacking. Yes, I accept the fact that I used to type every day. I have grown fond of that routine, but that was when I was a student.

When I stepped foot in the professional world, I lost track of the passion that I once had when I took up a writing major. I needed to earn, not only for myself but most importantly for my family. I had two younger siblings who were both in college when I graduated from the university. That particular phase in our family life taught me to let go of my personal wants first and reach out to the members who needed the most.

Still, I tried to sneak in some writing once in a while. I appreciated the wee hours in the morning when there was no noise going around, not the time yet to worry about office responsibilities, and distractions all over the place. However, even with this kind of system, I usually still get stuck and I can’t finish any piece properly. *Properly in the sense that I know the story is done, my characters have had their moments, and I have said what I truly wanted to say.

Now, I have to set time for my passion again even though I know that I am starting to be busier than ever because I have to take care of 100+ kids. 😉

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A Weekend of Love

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I haven’t been able to write much on this blog because I have been busy finishing my final paper for my literary criticism/theory class. 😦 But, luckily, I was able to have a wonderful weekend. What started as a sort of simple yayaan with my MA classmates, became an eye-opening experience on my part.

Last May 20 and 21, I attended the first writing workshop of Reb Fiction (Rebel Fiction) under the Precious Pages Corporation. They are one of the imprints of this famous publishing house. So, I am not really familiar with their titles, but it caught my attention because they are a brand that focuses on Young Adult fiction. This is interesting because there are a lot of different stories and printed books out on the market that are catering to the “young” readers, but the genres of stories aren’t really that wide with Filipino prints. Reb Fic, on the other hand, is trying to offer more varieties of novels or novelettes for the young readers to enjoy. This is a plus point on my part because I hope to see “riskier” or even a bit of “experimental” texts that are still going to be relatable to the YA field.

There are a lot of popular novels under the YA genre, but those are mostly foreign prints like Harry Potter, Hunger Games, and others (I grew up with less known ones like those written by Margaret Haddix, the Nick and Norah book, and even that of The Curious Case of the Dog in the Night Time). This is a good chance for Filipino writers to work on YA stories and further add that certain touch of “Filipino” sentiments and values.During the workshop, I also learned more about the YA genre (and market) as well as the process of building a “hero/heroine.” I was even able to present one story already. Now, I hope to work on that manuscript as soon as possible, so that the ideas are still fresh in my head. But… I think I need to go back to my final paper first and (face my fears 😂) finish the semester well before this. Still, (crossing my fingers) I hope to submit it to Reb Fic before the end of this month. 😀 ❤

Refresh Sundays

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As I find a way back to writing regularly in this blog, I have this Sunday topic that I wish to complete maybe twice a month. I am going to post about my travel experiences as well as some possible stories that I plan on writing soon. So, here’s to more adventures and stories to share!

Refresh Sundays

Mga Napulot sa Pagbabasa 20170426

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Nakakalungkot na bagay na ang panitikan ay di gaya ng ibang aralin na nasusukat ang bisa sa tulong ng mga pagsubok at pagsusulit. Ang ating mga pagsubok at pagsusulit ay sumusukat lamang sa pagkakatanda sa mga kaalamang gaya nito: Sino ang may-akda ng ganoon? Ano ang pangalan ng pangunahing tauhan? Ilan ang anak ni Ganoo’t Ganito? Ano ang nangyari sa panganay? Sa bunso? Nguni’t walang pagusulit na sumusukat sa nagiging bisa sa katauhan. At ano ang mga bisang ito? Marahil, lalo niyang nauunawaan ang kanyang sarili ngayon. Marahil, lalo siyang nalalapit sa katotohanan, sa kagandahan, sa liwanag.

Genoveva Edroza-Matute (1956)

It is unfortunate that literature is not like other subjects the efficacy of which can be measured through experiments and tests. Our tests can only measure how well we remember facts like: Who wrote that? Who is the main character? How many children does So-and-so have? What happened to the eldest child? The youngest? But no test can measure the impact of literature on the person. And what are the effects of literature? Perhaps the student will become more considerate of other people. Perhaps she now understands herself more. Perhaps she brings herself closer to the truth, to beauty, and to the light. (translation directly quoted from Caroline Hau’s work on The Problem of Consciousness in the book Necessary Fictions, 2000)

Learn, Write, and Complete a Story (Part 1)

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I suddenly realized that reading has become a tedious work these days. It now serves as an action that I need to complete for the sake of meeting an academic requirement. As I follow this new habit, I gradually lost the interest in meeting new characters as I have become busy in understanding (at least trying to understand) the ideas of various local and international literary critics. Then aside from discovering this extensive form of “reading,” I also realized that I lack an important knowledge about Philippine literature.

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On Writing (4): Am I losing my drive for writing or it’s mere procrastination?

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There are numerous opportunities for me to start bringing life to the unimaginable stories out of my head. But most of the time I slack off instead. After this, I only get frustrated at the end of the day because of wasted hours.

Frustrations
Writing has always been one of my toughest frustrations (next to singing). I’m aware of how random I could be throughout the day, so I’ve got to make use of my productive “break.” However, actual writing tends to come rarely these days. 😥 This is due to my lack of a fixed writing habit. I try to be consistent with my schedule, but distractions meet me which I embrace so openly.

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