First Celebrity Interview Published: “THE SUN ALSO SETS FOR THE DAWN”

Day 29 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaJanPoblano2022” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer.

This was my first celebrity interview ever, which could be the only celebrity interview I’d have in this lifetime. (I lost my chance at interviewing Lea Salonga much, much later.) I have my first-ever editor in college to thank for since she assigned this to me.

I did have a partner or co-writer. I didn’t mind since I was still new to the schoolpaper and needed to learn the ropes. He knew more about the music, plus, he was much cooler than me. Honestly, I wouldn’t really know if I could do the interview without him. We were interviewing celebrities…! We were to interview THE DAWN, “pioneers of Post-Modern Rock” here. I’m not sure who came up with that one (“pioneers of…”), my co-writer Butch or me, or if we got that somewhere. But pioneers, they really were.

IMG_20220119_055746

The concert ticket, front…

IMG_20220119_045001

…and back

They were doing a concert at our university. So the paper got permission from the organizers for the interview, which they arranged and made happen. We were allowed since the band had an important album out so, you know, it’s still publicity, however small. It was actually maybe an hour or so before the concert. They let us go inside their parked bus to meet the members. Unfortunately, for some reason, Jett Pangan, the main vocalist, was kept busy outside the bus. Usually, it’s really the vocalist who’s the main face of the band, right? So it was a bit of a downer that we couldn’t talk to him. I only have three out of four autographs. No cellphone yet, no camera, so no photos 😦

Not that we didn’t enjoy the interview! Of course, we did! I didn’t particularly know all of them then. I really just knew them as The Dawn. I just hoped I was asking the right questions. So thank goodness, Butch was the enthusiast. It wasn’t me who described Jett’s voice as “nasal”, though. (It’s true, Butch, so please don’t come down from heaven and scare me.) I wrote the first draft, he did the final draft where he added everything else. I do disagree about the description. We went to the concert (for free!) after the interview and, despite ny headache caused by being near large and loud speakers, Jett sounded fine to me. Many years later, I would watch Baby The Musical and hear Jett sing live onstage again — great voice and definitely not nasal!

Being a writer does have its perks sometimes.

IMG_20220119_010304

First Book Published: “TELENOVELAS: A LOOK ON HOW A FILIPINO COMMUNITY SEES FOREIGN TV DRAMAS”

Day 28 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaJanPoblano2022” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer.

I was going through my stuff (I never finish going through things…) and realized that I did publish my first book! Like many of my alma mater’s alumni, I published one. I think there are only three copies in total — one for me and two for the school. So I have my copy with me. One is in my college’s library. The last one, I am not sure. Probably in the university main library.

I’m referring to my undergraduate research/thesis. It has a wordy title, which I used in this post’s title. My study focused on telenovelas, which is Spanish for TV soaps. But specifically, as stated in my book’s Definition of Terms, a telenovela referred/refers to “a foreign (Spanish-speaking) TV drama serial dubbed in Tagalog.” For those who don’t know, Tagalog is one of the Philippines’ many dialects and is generally regarded as the one most understood.

I may not have watched everything on TV. However, because I liked to observe and know things, I was often updated about local television. So even if I didn’t really watch telenovelas at the time, I knew all the titles of those that were showing back then. I was well aware of which came first before what, and how the mostly-Mexican soaps made it to local TV.  That was long before K-Dramas invaded our screens. Also. the first telenovela, “La Traidora”, was the first ever foreign soap that was dubbed in our language!

“Filipinizing” or “Tagalizing” (both coined terms) began with several Japanese live action shows that used to be English-dubbed. Next, they Tagalized an anime of a children’s classic story. We didn’t have to wonder how far the new practice would go. Soon, it was Mexican soaps! We did not really have them on TV since the general public would not understand conversational Spanish. TV networks probably did not care to create captions because the general public were not keen on reading subtitles either. Again, this was waaaaay befoe K-Dramas, or Koreanovelas as we called them.

The start of Tagalized Mexican soaps was such a big surprise. Translating and dubbing TV shows using the local dialect paved the way for Spanish-speaking soaps to enter the scene. I will not anymore discuss Philippine TV history here, though. We’ll save that for another day.

That said, my study was actually my thesis adviser’s idea. I had a different one that was going nowhere (I don’t even remember what it was about). I think that was mainly because I was at a rough time in my life. Rough time or not, I had to force myself to concentrate. I had to graduate! It would have been a waste (and stupid!) if I didn’t graduate just because of one unfinished requirement. Honestly, I’m thankful that he gave me the idea. It sparked my interest more. And because I am a writer who loves to do research, I actually enjoyed writing my research. The interview parts weren’t fun, but no pain, no gain, right? To be frank, it was not a hard topic at all.  I didn’t/don’t care. I had fun writing it and it allowed me to graduate.

I took to heart the quote that I put on page 3:

“I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul.”
(William Ernest Henley)
my-undergrad-research

“TELENOVELAS: A LOOK ON HOW A FILIPINO COMMUNITY SEES FOREIGN TV DRAMAS” An Undergraduate Research By Jennifer Del Barrio Federizo (a.k.a. Me)

First and Only (So Far) Advertorial Published

Day 27 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaJanPoblano2022” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Critic’s Corner.

When I worked for a tertiary school, I had experience copywriting a few things under the PR & Advertising Office. My next job, which was a joke, for lack of a better term, got me as Copywriter. I copywrote stuff for them but I will never know if or when and where they were published. This is a whole different story that will have to wait to be told. But let me emphasize that because that second one was a joke, I don’t count it as employment (I didn’t get paid either).

Published or not, not any of my previous works qualified as an advertorial. The online Oxford Dictionary defines “advertorial” as:

  1. a newspaper or magazine advertisement giving information about a product in the style of an editorial or objective journalistic article.
  2. early 20th century (originally US): blend of advertisement and editorial.

It is safe to say that I only had my FIRST ADVERTORIAL PUBLISHED when I joined the cancer-focused publication. There was an ex-deal and I was assigned to write the advertorial. But here’s my problem: It was basically a medical advert. Medical...Of course, I could not say no, however much I wanted to. It was my job, right?  But I was very skeptical of the would-be outcome. I wasn’t sure I could write a good advertorial. I did not want to humiliate myself. Mostly, I did not want to humiliate my bosses and cause a problem with the clients. I had to try my very darn best!!!

I was to write about a particular drug that’s for a particular type of cancer. I was to advertise, editorial-style. The good news was I was given materials to read about it. The bad news? The materials were thick. The words were quite medical and scientific. And I had to balance the medical/scientific jargon with the layman’s terms.

I remember spending nights at the dormitory’s common area reading and trying to write. Mind you, at that time, I had no laptop. I had to write notes and underline things on the photocopied pages. Cellphones weren’t that sophisticated yet back then plus, for the longest time, I used analog phones. So guess what? No access to the Internet outslde work unless I went to the Internet Cafe. That could help me understand things more but I did not want to spend my own money for that.  Surprisingly, I found that I was not nearly as ignorant as before about cancer as I thought I would be. So I wrote it.

It was not like I would just write it then we’d publish in the upcoming issue. The pharma had to check my output, which was very understandable. I did want them to check the advert so they could correct errors and I could revise things. The biggest surprise to me, however, was they hardly changed anything! I don’t even remember that they did. You wouldn’t know it just by looking at me, but inside, I was kind of dumbfounded. I didn’t expect it to be that “easy”. It gave me more confidence in myself.

That’s the advert below. I blurred the title that carries the name of the drug and the logos of the pharmaceutical company. I’m just not sure if they’d be okay with it. The words in the article are also tiny so I suggest you don’t check anymore. Personally, if I were them, I wouldn’t mind as that would be free advertisement. I’m not them, though. Additonally, I’m not sure if the product is still out there.

IMG_20220109_020616

First Book Review Published: “WHAT TO EAT IF YOU HAVE CANCER (A GUIDE TO ADDING NUTRITIONAL THERAPY)”

Basically, I’m just supposed to be continuing what was supposed to be finished last November. But heck, I’m so near-finished now and I’m loving this theme I came up with, anyway. It’s making me want to continue writing again. I just almost gave up a few weeks ago (more on that some other time). I’m happy to share more of myself. So, to continue…

Day 26 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaJanPoblano2022” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Critic’s Corner.

Until I joined the Philippines’ first (and maybe only) cancer-focused magazine, I had never really done a book review outside school. It was not something I was sure I was good at. Honestly, I’m still not sure I’m good at it. The best I can say is “I try.” I had no plans of writing any until the Publisher/Boss asked me to review a book that someone recommended to her. So I did and had my FIRST BOOK REVIEW PUBLISHED.

The book was “What to Eat if You Have Cancer” by nutritionist-authors Maureen Keane, MS and Daniella Chase, MS. I hardly imagined that I’d review a book for cancer survivors, let alone, a book giving dietary guidelines. I’m a fiction girl, ergo, I expected to review fiction if I would ever. But there I was. I also tended to write longer, so writing this short one was a challenge. I did it, though. I survived my initiation. The book is most probably very outdated now. I haven’t checked if they’ve written any updated ones.

After that, I would go on writing two more cancer-related non-fiction reviews. Surprisingly, it was I who volunteered! Those were books that I found. One was “My Breast” by former journalist Joyce Wadler and the other, “Cancer Schmancer” by comedienne Fran Drescher. I have shared both reviews here in my blog. These experiences gave me the courage to try and join a call for book review submissions. If you are interested, I reviewed Alice Walker’s “The Color Purple” and Victor Hugo’s classic “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”.

Anyway, I think it’s possible to read the words on the image that I have provided if you just enlarge it, except I just found out now that light reflected on some parts. Sorry! I know I have the soft copy somewhere but I have to find it first.

IMG_20220109_020200

First Time Published: “SI DR. JOSE RIZAL”

Day 25 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Poetry Nook.

Before December 30 ends for everyone, I am sharing this poem for the first time ever. This was written, I believe, in June 2016, a tribute to our national hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal. I know that he is well-known in other parts of the world, particularly in Europe. This was, actually, a school requirement when the eldest kid was in fourth grade, I think. I helped him write it….Okay, I wrote it. Writing is not the kid’s forte and he was too lazy to do it. So, yeah, Bad Mama. I have my own poem that I have been trying to finish for years, to be honest. I’ve promised myself to finish it in 2022.

Anyway, today is the death anniversary of Rizal. So this is quite timely. I will translate in English, but don’t take it as the official translation yet.

SI DR. JOSE RIZAL                                  

Si Dr. Jose Rizal                                        
Magiting na bayani                                  
Isang  tagapagligtas                                   
Ng ating lahi.                                           
Ibinuwis ang buhay                                   
Alay sa Inang Bayan                                 
Halimbawang tunay                                  
Katangi-tanging mamamayan.                  
Nais kong matulad                                   
Kay Dr. Jose Rizal                                      
Sinisimulan ko                                           
Sa mabuting pag-aaral.                              

DR. JOSE RIZAL

Dr. Jose Rizal
Was a brave hero
He was a Savior  
To the Filipinos.
He sacrificed his life
For the Motherland
A great example of
A model citizen.
I want to be like
Dr. Jose Rizal
From here on I focus
On lessons and good morals. 

Copyright © J.Gi Federizo

First Time It was Published: HULING SIGAW

Day 24 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Poetry Nook.

This is the first time I am sharing the poem here. However, the FIRST TIME IT WAS PUBLISHED was, of all things, in the official publication of the tertiary school I worked for. I don’t remember to whom I submitted it, but I know I asked if I could share a poem. The truth was I was not sure of my choice. I don’t remember why I chose it among all my poems. I think it was because it had not been published anywhere yet. My worry was the sensitive topic of the poem.

This is HULING SIGAW or LAST CRY (“cry” here means scream). If anyone tries to understand it enough, this person will realize it is related to suicide. Related, but not about the act of committing suicide itself. I was referring to the act of writing the suicide note, one’s final goodbye, her feelings of hopelessness and personal grief…I was worried because the publication was to be distributed to the staff, faculty and alumni. I didn’t want them to think that sharing it was my own cry for help.

I was not suicidal when I wrote it. In fact, on the contrary. I was SMILING when I wrote it. I don’t remember what inspired me to do so. But I remember my excitement when I was creating it. Let me make it clear, though. I was/am NOT advocating suicide, I was/am NOT suicidal. I guess it’s similar to a screenwriter who gets inspired writing a horror movie. He doesn’t necessarily like horrific things. See the point?

Anyway, I’m glad I pushed through with it. It made me proud because Mrs. Consolacion P. Sauco, the Filipino Department Head, loved it! She told me so when she saw me. I was so happy because she happened to be a well-respected author who’s an expert in the Filipino language. I can’t find an actual biography of hers, but Googling her shows the various stuff she wrote or translated. For her to give me praise for what I wrote was really something!

For anyone who understands Filipino, here it is. I have been trying to translate it in English for years but I never get to finish because I never get satisfied. I promise to share the English version once I actually translate it completely….By the way, to be more specific, I was the Public Relations and Advertising Assistant. They most times never got that right.

Two-in-One Firsts: SA AKING PAGLISAN

Busy days!!! I’m going to have to post several times here to finish the challenge before the new year starts!

Day 23 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Poetry Nook.

Here’s the background: A friend’s brother was failing his Filipino subject. He was asked to make up for it. I’m not sure if it was the teacher’s idea, or my friend’s, or mine. But I helped create a special newsletter that he was to submit. Since I had creative control over it, I decided there ought to be a poetry section. Self-serving, of course, ha ha!

The thing was, the newsletter was in Filipino and I didn’t have a short-enough Filipino poem that had not been published anywhere. Therefore, I decided to complete the translation of a poem that I had been trying to do. The poem below was the product.  This was the FIRST TIME I TRANSLATED a poem, which happened to be mine. And tt was probably only the three of us and the teacher who saw the newsletter. So this is technically the FIRST TIME I AM PUBLISHING THIS.

The good thing is I don’t have to translate this for you. This is the Tagalog version of WHEN I’M GONE, which I already shared here.

IMG_20211224_024556

First Time to Publish: “FAREWELL, ANGEL”

I know I said the other day that it was my anniversary at work. Sorry but I meant the next day, December 20. I forgot that most of you were still experiencing December 19. That said, I’ve been going through a lot of things and have been finding stuff that I can share here. Don’t be surprised if I post more than once in a day. Now on to the challenge!

Day 22 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Poetry Nook.

Back when I worked for a tertiary school, I met new people, my first friends out of college. One of them included me as one of her baby’s godmothers. Unfortunately, the baby was born with a Complex Heart Disease. She needed surgery, but it had to wait until she was a year old. It was very risky operating on Baby Pauline at such a young age, even at one.

During her young life, I saw her only once, maybe a day or two before her surgery. Her mother brought her to the office so we could see her. I remember her smiling. Her eyes were a-glow. It gave us a sense of hope that things were going to be alright…

After surgery, however, the results were not good. Our friends (mostly her godmothers, too) and I went to visit her at the hospital and we found out she was in critical condition. Pauline’s mother tried to let us visit the baby one by one, let us inside the room. I delayed my turn. I wasn’t ready yet. But after two or three people had their turns, we were not allowed by the hospital staff to see her anymore. Visitation hours were over. At that moment, I was, to be truthful, relieved. I dreaded seeing her frail little body stuck with various needles. I didn’t want to see her like that…I don’t remember anymore if she survived a few more days after that, or if it was just hours after. I just remember we were sad that a little one had to go so soon.

In hindsight, I don’t regret not seeing her at the hospital. Not at all. I thank the Lord that I have that memory of her smiling face to remember her by. In all honesty, it was a good, final memory.

That’s her in the photo above. The message was something I penned (not the song on the right, though), as requested by her parents. It was a kind of thank you card/letter for those who helped raise funds for the baby’s surgery. When Baby Pauline passed away, I created another piece, talking about her brief journey. They printed it out on another card, which they gave away to people at her wake.

The poem I am sharing was written for her months after. I don’t think I’ve ever published it anywhere. I Googled it verbatim, it didn’t come out. Checked my other blog, I did not see it either. So maybe it’s safe to say that today is the first time I am publishing this.

For Baby Pauline, in memoriam.

NOTE: Free use of flower image from Pixabay.com

I First Published This Because I Wrote It

It’s my anniversary at work (well, WFH for now) today, YAY!!! So I decided to finalize my last sub-theme for this challenge and post (finally!).

Day 21 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “First Published”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer. Related page: Poetry Nook.

Anyone who’s followed me long enough already knows about this. But since I am doing this as part of a challenge, and I also have new followers (thank you, all!!!), I am sharing it again. This is a translation of the popular Filipino lullaby SA UGOY NG DUYAN. This was first published on my Multiply account, not here. But I am sharing it because I WROTE IT. It was I who translated it in English.

While it is one of the various translations, it is currently the most popular. I say this not to brag, only to emphasize that I, at least, own the translation. It’s been used/posted by others without giving credit. They should, at least, say that they found it online. Anyway, read on and I hope you like my translation…

The End Justifies the Journey

On January 3, 2005, I shared through Multiply one of my favorite Filipino songs, Sa Ugoy ng Duyan. As many of my contacts were non-Filipinos, I thought I’d share a translation. However, at the time, I could not find any worthy translation, so I decided to create my own called The Lulling Cradle, which I included in a previous post (check the last video). I was quick to mention it was an unofficial translation. From what I now remember, there were two to three people who asked permission to share my translation, so I said YES, as long as I got credited.

Fast forward to a few years after, and then a few years more, I have found out that my translation is kind of making the rounds online, without proper credit and no explanation that it is just one of more translations. I don’t expect or plan…

View original post 196 more words

First Photo Essay Published: “THE MASKED ANGELS”

Day 20 of the #NaNoPoblano2021 challenge, now a.k.a. “NaDePoblano” (heee….) . Major Theme: “A Few of My Earliest Things”. New sub-theme: “My Firsts”. Related post: My Evolution as a Writer.

The publication I worked for was focused on cancer awareness and one of its major sections focused on children with cancer. I am not sure now if the original plan was, indeed, to create a photo essay for that issue, but I wrote an essay-slash-vignette. I don’t know if I pitched the idea of using it or the inspiration came because I was assigned the section. The bosses liked it, though. This came out in the same issue as that of the article I shared last time. I guess that technically, this should be my first published article as a professional. I didn’t/don’t really consider it that way, though. For me, it’s a story.

IMG_20211213_030427

Now, I didn’t want to make anyone cry, but I heard feedback that it did make a few people teary-eyed. I felt good and bad–good that it was effective, bad that I didn’t want to make people cry at all, not because of cancer. I now realize while I write this that it wasn’t the first time I’d been told I made people cry. If memory serves me right, this was the fourth time that something I wrote (song, story, essay) had a similar effect. I don’t know why that is, to be honest.

The End Justifies the Journey

NOTE: This was written as a photo-essay about children in the cancer ward for The Big C magazine (January-March 2006, Children’s Hour section)

________________________________________________________________________________

Here where many wage wars, little heroes fight their own battles armed with a dash of hope and sprinkles of innocence, coated with a touch of loved ones’ tender loving care. Every smile has a story.

Imagination takes flight and little Masked Angels make where sweet dreams lie, to bask under the morning sun or traipse on a moonlit night calling out to friends hidden behind trees or under makeshift carton houses. “Pung! Huli ka!” they cry out racing towards the base to be saved.

They run and laugh and play. Sometimes they tumble. But heroes are made of sturdy stuff. After every fall they take a stand against unseen enemies in defiance. Sometimes, imagination flies back to the classroom—there’s the little girl he loves to…

View original post 332 more words