Wednesday, September 03, 2008

whirlwind days

The past few days have been a little hectic but fun.

SciFi Panel

I was part of a panel that discussed science and science fiction last weekend over at the Science Discovery Center at the Mall of Asia, along with Queena Lee-Chua, Quark Henares, Emil Flores and host Karen Kunawicz. While scifi is not precisely my forte, I spoke about the genre in the context, of course, of speculative fiction. Highlights include my decision to throw poor Quark under the bus when a rather difficult question from the audience came our way (sorry Quark!), Queena and I exchanging whispers about time travel and Star Trek, and Emil and I arguing over the merits of Mazinger Z's Kouji Kabuto. Later, a Gundam question stumped the entire panel.

The Discovery Center is a very cool place, complete with a planetarium and lots of things to do. I plan on taking Sage there one day.

HBO Sunday

On Sunday, Nikki and I were godparents for the firstborn of Alex and Kate Osias - the handsome Hector Benjamin Osias. Hector and Rowan were born a week apart. The church was beautiful but the reception food was even better - nothing beats chicken and kare-kare at Aristocrat! Secretly, we actually arrived with time to spare and had adobo flying saucers.

Wow-Wow (no wee) at the Palancas

We celebrated Kate's first Palanca Award (Short Story for Children) as well as Ian's first 1st Prize (Short Story - 4 to go for the Hall of Fame, Ian!) and got to share in everyone's happiness (and food, siyempre - combat buffet-style). This was when Butch recruited me for a new project early next year (and rather cleverly managed to foist responsibility on me - haha), Sarge and I ribbed each other as losers, and Jing and Tony gently exerted pressure on Nikki to submit her book to Milfores for publication. I was happy to see Marge Evasco and congratulate her for her Free Press win and join the marginalized smokers (old and new winners) in the adjacent smoking area. Everyone was hoping for a repeat of last year's outrageous door prizes - and we got our wish when P100k was raffled away, half of which went to Charlson Ong.


We had lunch with the winner of the Grand Prize for the Novel (English), Miguel Syjuco. Such a pleasant and well-spoken man, we were happy to find our poetics aligned in many ways. He wrote "Ilustrado" in the three years and cut down the 200,000 word monster in a more palatable 80,000 words (the same novel, by the way, is long-listed for the Man Asia). Over tapas and champagne we talked shop, and asked ourselves where everything is going, and what should be done, what we could do, and so on. We spoke about how, ultimately, we need to build upon (and then destroy) what has been done and construct new texts - killing our fathers, so to speak.

Yvette Tan, Wanggo Gallaga, Audrey Carpio and Tals Diaz were there for questions and revelations - and somehow, conversation swerved to "Twilight", and glittering vampires (gah), and how the LitCritters should be renamed GlitCritters or Gliterati (haha). The long lunch ended with open invitations for everyone to sit in with the LitCritters and/or play Upwords (we love this game).

Dragon Fantastic

Vin Simbulan's fantasy antho "A Time for Dragons" has been greenlit by Anvil, with cover and inner illustrationsby Andrew Drilon. Authors in the draconic antho include (to the best of my knowledge): Yvette Tan, Elbert Or, Cyan Abad-Jugo, Kate Aton-Osias, Alexander Drilon, Elyss Punsalan, Gabriela Lee, Nikki Alfar, Joseph Nacino, Apol Lejano-Massebieau, Vincent Michael Simbulan, Paolo Chikiamco-Recio, Dominique Cimafranca, Alexander Osias, Oscar Alvarez, Sarge Lacuesta and me.

Kudos to Vin!

I heart Rochita

Big, big thanks to Rochita Loenen-Ruiz (who blogs here and here) for sending me a surprise package: Interzone, Asimov's and stuff for Sage and Rowan! I am so happy - reading material!!!

Someday, I'll figure out how to get published in Interzone (Rochita recommended this lovely piece of spec fic by Aliette de Bodard, "Deer Flight").

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