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 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 school paper 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.

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The concert ticket, front…

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…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 my headache caused by being near large loudspeakers, Jett sounded fine to me. Many years later, I would watch Baby The Musical and hear Jett sing live on stage again — great voice and definitely not nasal!

Being a writer does have its perks sometimes.

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“I miss Perspective” (post-) #MondayMemoirs

One of the things that has kept me busy these days is collating all of my written articles that I can collect in one place. No, not here. I have made a new blog that will serve as my online portfolio. It has become necessary since I have been asked to share previous works done long before my current job. So I thought I’d create it.

So far, I have not really posted anything yet, but I have been busy creating the pages (which I can’t seem to make publicly visible for now, for some reason) and finding links. You see, many published articles are either missing now or not archived online. Thankfully, I have soft copies of many. What bothers and annoys me is the idea of retyping the many more articles that only have hard copies. I am trying as much as possible to find archived copies.

To make this story short, my search for possibly archived UPLB Perspective articles brought me to this old post that can be found in TonyoCruz.com. My fellow-Perspective writer Anthony Ian “Tonyo” Cruz (blogger/columnist/strategist) and his commenters — anonymous or otherwise, like political humor blogger The Professional Heckler — described a wonderful part of my college life back then. It was a time when the world was already getting much more modern and we were still stuck in early 19th century technology. Okay, exaggerated, but really, floppy discs, no laptops,…?

So I’m sharing 🙂 Just click on the image, guys.

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The blog post that made me reminisce my days as student journalist

 

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I just realized something…it wasn’t Monday yesterday! I forgot that we were on holiday last Monday! And here I was trying to post just minutes before it was supposed to turn Tuesday in other parts of the world.

Sorry about that. Mea culpa..Ha ha haaa!!!

My Evolution as a Writer

So I finally found out what “Remove formatting” could do, so this is now much more readable. I have also done some editing and have updated the thing. Do share your own story. I’m sure you have one 🙂

The End Justifies the Journey

NOTE: I don’t know about you, but I’ve always been curious about how writers started. Well, here is my story, if you’re interested. I thought I’d start with this post (well, technically, this is the second post…) as it’s a good introductory of myself as a writer.

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female-writer-typing


I have always loved stories, that is the clear and honest truth. It is the reason why I began to write. It is the reason why even in my own dreams, I make up stories and watch how they unfold. Perhaps, more than a writer, I am actually a pen-toting storyteller. But it wasn’t always like that. When I was small, I used to have this ritual. At night, I would lie in bed and imagine stories in my head, stories of adventure and drama—oh, I was such a masochist, making myself cry and loving it!—until I fell asleep. Which is probably…

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“BUNTONG HININGA”


“Inay, ano’ng oras ka babalik?” ang tanong ng iyong bunso. Ang sabi mo, “Ewan ko. Matulog ka na,” sabay senyas sa panganay na anak na patulugin na ang bunso. Sa di-kalayuan, tatlo pang mga anak ang subsob sa pag-aaral.

Palagi na lamang ganoon. Itatanong nila ang oras ng iyong pag-uwi, sasagutin mo naman sila ng “ewan.” At sila’y tatahimik na. Alam na nila kung bakit. Bumuntong-hininga ka.

Oras na. Nakapaligo ka na. Pagpipinta naman ng mukha ang iyong aasikasuhin kaya naupo ka sa harap ng salamin. Inuna mo ang eye shadow. Lagay. Lagay. Lagay. At… Aba, napuna mo, nasaan na kaya ang maniningning mong mga mata? Ngayon, ang mga matang nakatitig sa iyo ay tila hindi na sa `yo. Mapapanglaw ang mga ito, pilit na itinatago ang lungkot na naroroon.

Buntong-hininga…

Ito ay nagmula sa Internet at hindi ko inaaring akin

Ano ka ba, Nena? Gumalaw ka na nga! Baka ma-leyt ka sa trabaho! At itinuloy mo ang paglalagay ng eye shadow. Pero napansin mo ang iyong noo. Aba, saan nanggaling ang mga guhit sa noo mo? Napatawa ka. Itinatanong pa ba `yon? Sa trabahong ito, bata ka pa, malolosyang ka na. Pero wala ka nang magagawa. Kailangan mong kumayod para sa mga anak mo upang kayo ay may matuka. Kailangang makapag-aral ang mga bata upang hindi lumaking api-apihan ng lipunan. Di tulad mo.

Buntong-hininga…

Tapos ka na sa eye shadow. Inumpisahan mo naman ang mascara. Tumama ang dulo sa iyong mata. Aray! P_____ ina! At may naalala ka. `Yun din ang madalas mong maibulalas sa tuwing sasaktan ka niya, ng walang kuwenta mong asawa. May pitong araw sa isang linggo pero para bang nagiging walo. Walang araw na hindi ka nalamog at nagkaroon ng pasa sa iba’t ibang bahagi ng katawan. H’wag, maawa ka na sana, ang pakiusap mo. Nguni’t tila wala siyang narinig…Hindi na ngayon.

Nasa’n na kaya’ng gagong `yon? Tumawa ka na naman. Isang matunog na tawa. Ano’ng pakialam ko? Natakot na siguro ang gago kasi nang minsang hindi ka nakatiis, lumaban ka. Nadampot mo ang mainit na plantsa at…siguradong ibang-iba na ang mukha niya. Inisip mo kung makikilala mo pa kaya siya sakaling magkatagpo kayong muli ng landas. Pasensyahan na lang kami. Naghihirap siya ngayon, naghihirap din kami. Ano pa nga ba ang dahilan at naririto ako sa putik?

Buntong-hininga…

Tapos na ang kaartehan sa mata. Sinimulan mo namang pinturahan ang humpak mong mga pisngi. Lagay, lagay na naman hanggang sa pumula. `Sus! Daig ko pa’ng kamatis! Buti pa nga ang kamatis, mas mukhang sariwa…Ay, oo nga pala, pareho lang kami. Sariwa ngayon, lamog na bukas. Tumawa ka na naman sa sarili mong biro na sa katotohana’y hindi nakakatawa. Kung kasama mo siguro sa trabaho ang iyong biruin nang ganoon, matawa rin kaya sila?

Buntong-hininga…

Ito ay nagmula sa Internet at hindi ko inaaring akin

Mapula na ang iyong mga pisngi. Sa labi naman. Lagyan ng pula ring lipistik. Kinapalan mo. Kinapalan mo pa. Ha, ha, para ka palang klawn sa perya, Nena, sabi mo sa salamin. Kulang na lang ay umabot hanggang pisngi ang lipistik. Pero bago ka napatawang muli, may sumagi sa isip mo. Naalala mo ang isang lalaking naging kostumer mo. Higit pa.  Naging magkaibigan kayo. Hanggang minsan, nasabi n’ya, “Mahal kita. Gusto kitang pakasalan. Handa ako, kahit na saang simbahan.” Sinabi mong pag-iisipan mo muna. Ang totoo, nagsimula ka nang mangarap ng pagharap sa dambana kasama n’ya, noon pa mang bago ka niya inalok.

Nguni’t pagsapit ng araw na inyong itinakda, ano’ng isinagot mo? “Hindi ako maaaring pakasal sa `yo. Umalis ka na. Hindi ka putik na tulad ko. Wala akong lugar sa mundo mo. At lalong wala kang lugar sa mundo ko.” Katwiran mo, ang pangarap ay pangarap lamang. At tulad ng payasong may ngiti, ngumiti ka rin. At tulad ng mukha sa likod ng maskara, pinilit mo ring magtago. Umiyak ang puso ng payasong ikaw.

Buntong-hininga…

Tinanggal mo na ang tuwalya sa ulo at umagos pababa ang mahaba mong buhok. Dati, maganda ito, katangi-tanging tingnan. Maganda pa rin ito subali’t hindi na tulad noon. Iba’t ibang kamay na ang sumuyod dito. Mga kamay ng kung sinu-sinong tao, kakilala mo man o hindi. Kung maaari lang ay kalbuhin mo na ang sarili. Muli, umalingawngaw ang malakas pong paghalakhak.

“Bakit, Inay?” tanong ng bunso mo nang magising sa iyong tinig. “Wala, matulog ka na.” Bakit ko nga ba tinatawanan ang sarili ko? Sinagot mo rin ang sarili mong tanong. Siguro, hindi nga nakakatawa ang trabahong `to. Pero sa buhay kong ito, mamatay ka nang tumatawa kaysa sa magutom.

Buntong-hininga…

At saka mo naalala, gabi na nga pala. Leyt ka na. Masasabon ka na naman sa klab. Kaya mabilis mong sinuklay ang iyong buhok at isinuot ang malaswang damit, pati na rin iba pang kulurete sa katawan. Oras na para harapin ang trabaho. Sasayaw ka na naman sa entablado, sa ilalim ng makukulay na ilaw, sa mahaharot na tugtugin. Iteteybol ka na naman ng kung sinu-sino. At…Hindi bale. May pansit naman kaming meryenda pag-uwi ko mamaya.

Sa pagmamadali, hindi mo na nagawang bumuntong-hininga.

Natagpuan ko ito sa artisticallylinked.ning.com

Ang “Buntong-Hininga” ay isa sa mga una kong kathang maikling kuwento. Ito ay unang nalathala sa UPLB Perspective noong Pebrero 1995.

Karapatang-Ari sa Kuwento © Pebrero 1995, 2011 ni J.Gi Federizo

 

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Nagustuhan mo ba ang kuwentong ito? Maaari lamang na paki-LIKE kung gano’n. O maaaring may mabuti kang maibabahagi ukol dito? ‘Wag mag-atubiling iparating sa akin! Isulat ang iyong nasasaisip sa nakalaang kahon sa may ibaba o di kaya’y sulatan ako sa j.gi.federizo@gmail.com …Maraming salamat!!! :D


My Evolution as a Writer

NOTE: I don’t know about you, but I’ve always been curious about how writers started. Well, here is my story, if you’re interested. I thought I’d start with this post (well, technically, this is the second post…) as it’s a good introduction of myself as a writer.

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female-writer-typing

 

I have always loved stories, that is the clear and honest truth. It is the reason why I began to write. It is the reason why even in my own dreams, I make up stories and watch how they unfold. Perhaps, more than a writer, I am actually a pen-toting storyteller. But it wasn’t always like that. When I was small, I used to have this ritual. At night, I would lie in bed and imagine stories in my head, stories of adventure and drama—oh, I was such a masochist, making myself cry and loving it!—until I fell asleep. Which is probably why they made it  in  my dreams. I don’t daydream anymore, but I can’t say I don’t dream of movies still. And in colors!

I started with writing, though, by writing literally. In school, we had handwriting exercises and we tried to write legibly, neatly and nicely. My penmanship still leaves much to be desired, but no matter. I know I enjoyed writing, enjoyed the letters perhaps because they presented to me a whole lot of possibilities. I felt liberated for some reason. That was during second grade. The next year, I wrote my first story.

See below for individual credits

Well, technically first. It was about a horror story writer who was no good in his so-called craft and couldn’t get published until he unwittingly sold his soul to the devil. Things then went really well, except the devil made him pay for his part of the bargain in the end.

Would’ve been quite an interesting piece from such a novice writer if only it was not a story I read from one of the Tagalog (a Filipino dialect) comic books that were already near extinction back then. My version ironically made my parents (and me) laugh. So much for horror. Just imagine a story ending with the word “typewriting” — that should kill the story, ha ha!

I really enjoyed writing exercises in grade school especially when we had to summarize stories that we were made to read. I may have misconstrued summary as re-telling, though. But I did write my first stories within the next years.

I was still quite “un-well-versed” and not sure how to go about creative writing properly, so my early works were in script form written on extra notebook sheets. That was probably because I was too impatient and wanted to do it fast, and I loved reading the short plays found in our textbooks. I also loved to watch TV that my first stuff had characters from a well-known sentai (Japanese live action shows for kids) and those from a local action-comedy movie intended for teens and pre-teens. My own plots, but the characters were not my own. There is a term for that now: fan fiction.

Seems like I have always been partial to adventure, be it action or fantasy. My road to the world of adventures got temporarily sidetracked, however, when I entered high school. You know high school, it exposes you to crushes and drama. Soon enough, I was writing romantic dialogues, words that I thought I fully understood. No more fan fiction. However, my plots were shallow, trying-hard-to-be-mature, and unoriginal, culled unintentionally from TV and movies. I did find a technique, which was to “have” actors “act” in my stories as I imagined them.

Despite that foray into pretentious writing (by “pretentious,” I am referring to my own writing), high school actually brought me to newer heights. I started my first non-fan fiction (supposedly) action-adventure, a detective story called Ticay where a young girl was a secret agent. My father happened to see that one though I wasn’t sure how much he got to read. He mentioned it to me because I think he saw what little of the draft I wrote when I decided to throw it away. After the horror-thingy, I had not let my family read my stuff.

Meanwhile, I wrote my first poems then, which made me think deeper about things and study myself more. I was uncomfortable about writing poetry before simply because I thought poetry was only for smart people. I realized that it was more for people to understand themselves and the world. Around this time, I began composing and experimenting with songs as well, themes ranging from friendship, social relevance and, what else? Love, or the lack of it. Still, storytelling was/is my first love and it was swell getting some kind of recognition as a writer. I was soon given tasks to write scripts for group and class presentations. That started when a friend volunteered for me when our Literature teacher asked, “Okay, who will write the scripts?” The wheels started turning.

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High school was really the highlight of my writing “career” and I somehow had Bantam Books’ Sweet Dreams (S.D.) to thank for. Even back in gradeschool, and I knew this because of my big sister, the old S.D. was still the romance book of choice for teens. The same was  somewhat still true when I got to that stage. I began to dream of being a novelist and S.D. fanned this desire in me because, aside from I loved to write, I realized one thing: the endings were mostly so predictable. In fact, you could guess the stories based on what were written at the back alone. I thought, hey, if they could do it, so could I!

I would write my own S.D.-like stories and hopefully submit to them. So I did write (though not submit mainly because I had no idea how). I believed in the idea so much that I created my own series called Roseville Books and it even had its own simple logo. In a span of a little more than a year, I wrote seven—I repeat, SEVEN—novelettes! Wow…I had never been so inspired, so prolific in my entire life, ever! It was a feat that I unfortunately have not been able to duplicate. I laugh now when I re-read them, but that stage was still good training ground for me, judging from how my characters and plots grew with more depth and maturity.

Too bad I became busy with school that my eighth Roseville book, as well as some other stories that were mostly SciFi (my friend Raine and I were obsessing over Star Trek then)  were left unfinished. College life then started and everything seemed to be in boring, uninspiring slow motion. I was able to write a few songs and poems, but not short stories, or the eighth Roseville Book, or the unfinished novel called King Arthur’s Daughter. All I had were all drafts that kept accumulating and lists of fictitious names.

uplb-perspective

When I joined the school paper, it was only then did I get to concentrate again on short stories/vignettes. Campus journalism was a whole new ball game and I had to dabble in-between creative and journalistic writing. It seemed that writing became an evolution for me. My Development Communication degree taught me to write for various media, including for radio. I found that though there are obvious differences in the technical aspects, there are not much differences when you write for film, radio, and other stuff. Only a few adjustments and change or additional terminologies to consider.

These knowledge gained were particularly of use to me when I worked for a tertiary school as scriptwriter-producer of (mostly) their institutional videos. I also had the privilege to join a writing-for-film workshop under the great Armando “Bing” Lao. Who would have thought that story-writing could be scientific as well? Honing my chosen craft and wishing to learn further, I joined several writing groups and blogs online. Meanwhile, while these were going on, my dream of becoming a published writer was not diminished. This dream was realized when I joined The Big C magazine team where I became the editorial assistant and staff writer. I not only wrote, edited and proofread, but got to learn more about cancer that I could ever imagine.

Still, the “novel idea” is yet to see fruition, an idea I’ve had before I finished school. It is said that we should write what we know. And so I try to find more information as much I can to make it work. I did use to stress over it, but now, I try to take it in stride. Stress does not solve anything and if I die without ever publishing any book, so be it. Meanwhile, I try to finish a whole lot more in my collection of unfinished “business.”

bigc-magazine

Copyright © The Core Group Publishing, Inc. Unfortunately, I heard they folded up so the dotcom of the magazine is no more. The Tripod account was the first and reeeaally old one that was there even before I joined the publication

Currently, I write content for the web. For those unfamiliar with the actual meaning of “web content  writer,” the job mainly entails writing articles and information you read from businesses’ websites and blogs. For instance, if you were new to WordPress and would like to know what it’s all about and how you should go about things, you go to WordPress.com and the information they provide have been written by their web content writers, not any random writer or blogger who simply wants to write about WordPress.

I still love fantasy, suspense and adventure, with my interests lying on psychology, psychiatry, parapsychology, psychoses, the paranormal, forensic science and other things that boggle the mind. I will never stop writing. Take a hiatus every now and then, perhaps, but never really leave it.

Fiction, essays, poems, songs—they all have their stories. It is just a matter of knowing how and what to write.

Comic book images in collage credited to/found in:

Komiklopedia (for Tagalog Klasiks)

ComicBookMovie.com (for Pilipino Komiks)

Video48 (for the ff.: Hiwaga Komiks, Espesyal Komiks, Extra Komiks)

en.wikipilipinas.org (for Universal Komiks-Magazine and Halakhak Komiks)

 

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So that’s how this writer evolved. How about you? What is your writer’s story? Let us know. Let’s exchange stories 🙂