Category Archives: Uncategorized

Why I Giggle Like A Schoolgirl

Been really busy with work lately. We’ve been receiving a lot of manuscripts, and a lot of manuscripts also means more editing/proofreading work for me. But I’m not complaing. Surprisingly, I’m enjoying the work more than I initially expected.

But here’s what’s really keeping me bouncy, I’ve just been accepted into the Creative Writing graduate program of one of the more, let’s just say prominent, universities in my place. After being denied entry into my alma mater (because I had failing grades in Math… fuck Math! And both Human and Neuro Anatomy. I was supposed to be in Med school you know… :D), I thought I would get the same results in the other schools I applied to. I thought, if my school had such high standards, then surely, the others would have the same, if not higher.
Then I received an email from one of the universities I applied to, telling me that I was scheduled for an interview, then during the interview I was told I got in, mainly because of my writing merits and my boss’s/former professor’s highly commendable recommendation. The interviewer also said that joining writing contests was a sign of dedication, and receiving recognition meant that I had the potential.
I was so happy that I couldn’t stop myself from giggling. I even had to excuse myself from the department head, saying that I really do giggle like a schoolgirl on ecstasy when I was happy. And I was happy. It was at that moment that I realized that yes, it isn’t always about the grades we receive.

Anyway, I can’t wait to train under the tutelage of some of the country’s best fictionists, poets, and playwrights.

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Is This What Psychosis Feels Like?

A nagging thought has been bothering me for a few days now. Believe it or not, it’s nothing that I find quite serious, although I think it’s weird. I can’t fully explain it, but I’ll try to describe it: imagine sipping on your favorite fruit shake while simultaneously thinking about poisoning it. Or how about, imagine holding a very sharp knife and having the urge of stabbing yourself. I don’t know, I’m not alarmed or anything, but it’s unnerving to constantly think about dying/killing yourself while looking through a manuscript and checking for errors (yep, I work as a copyeditor). Should I go ahead and see a shrink?


More Advice For Writing

I’ve often been asked (though I don’t have any idea why some people think I have the authority) about how to differentiate between ‘showing and telling’ when it comes to writing. Now, before I go on, I would like to include the fact that I’ve been working as a copyeditor for a month and a half now, in one of the most reputable publishing houses here in my place (hint: it’s a university press). Also, I have no idea how that even relates to this writing tidbit I’m about to share.

So, ‘showing vs telling’ huh? It’s every budding writer’s worst enemy. And one of the things these younglings — before I forget, May the Fourth be with you! — seem to struggle to understand. But fear no more my friends, for this ‘showing vs telling’ thing is pretty easy to comprehend, because, first of all, that’s basically what it means. ‘Showing’ means showing, and ‘telling’ means telling. When you show, you describe, sometimes, in detail. And when you tell, well, you just tell. Here’s an example of me talking about an old school library:

(Telling):      “The library was old.”
(Showing):  “The paved path leading to the library was missing bricks in places, and I couldn’t shake the feeling of a hundred invisible eyes watching me as I walked by. Once I passed the hardwood doors, I could almost swear my own ears caught the faint echoes of voices that were long gone.”

You have to understand that one isn’t necessarily better than the other. In my case, when I write, I use them both. I tell stuff that I think isn’t really necessary (Her foot hurt, so she went ahead and took an aspirin.) And I show stuff I know will be essential to my story (Her face was like a diamond, with a wide forehead and a delicate chin. Ringlets of what could have been ebony hair fell down to her waist. He could only imagine dark hazel eyes, sensual and imploring as they gazed at him, lifeless like the rest of her. As he stared, he wondered whether those cold, dead lips would feel real, if not close to real, as the statue’s hands.)

Take note, a story that is pure telling will be boring, while a story that is pure showing will be dragging — tiring, even. Right now, I can’t tell you what would work well with your story, or how much of each you should use, but I’m sure you’ll find it out soon. Just keep writing and before you know it, you’ll finally bring balance to the force (your writing. Sorry, I just had to make one last Star Wars related pun.)


The Day I Decided to Study Cooking

I was watching a cooking show where they featured a wide variety of Asian cuisine the other day, and aside from getting a serious craving for Lamb Curry, I also decided that I should learn to cook. When it comes to cooking, I’m no pro, but I’m not an amateur either. I know the how-to’s to the simple ones like frying, and making steak and stew. This is why I think I won’t have any trouble learning new recipes. Especially Asian recipes. For starters, I think I’ll go with East-Asian cuisine first since I’m a sucker for Japanese and Korean food. Anyway, here’s the first one I made: IMG_0359 IMG_0357 It’s a Korean dish called Kimbap. As you can see, it’s a rice roll, kinda like the Japanese sushi. I’ve had both a lot of times, and from my experience, I think the main difference between kimbap and sushi is that kimbap uses (but is not restricted to) meat, while sushi uses seafood (fish, squid, octopus etc…) At least, this is what I told my sister when she asked me about it. Here’s my recipe for tuna kimbap:

2 cups of rice
2 tsp. sesame oil
4 tbsp. mayonnaise
1 canned tuna (flakes, in brine)
1 carrot
1 cucumber
Korean seaweed wrap
Kimchi
salt, pepper (to taste)

1. Cook rice. When it’s done, add 2 tsp. of sesame oil and some salt. Mix.
2. Combine tuna and mayonnaise (like you’re making a spread). Add some pepper.
3. Cut carrot and cucumber into strips. Steam it for 3-5 minutes (or you can have it raw).
4. Spread rice evenly on top of the seaweed wrap. Leave at least a centimeter of space from the top (this is where you would dab some water so the wrap would stick once you roll it).

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My sister settling the rice over the seaweed wrap.

5. Lay down your ingredients near the bottom of the wrap.
6. Roll it tightly. (Note: You can use a bamboo mat, aluminum foil, or just your hands).
7. Slice and serve with kikkoman soy sauce and wasabi (optional).

Typically, kimbap is made with beef, but as I mentioned earlier, a variety of ingredients can be used. I was also supposed to add an egg roll into the mix, but we we’re out of eggs so… This recipe makes 5 rolls.


Would You Rather…?

Would you rather have an obsessed-psycho-murderous-ghost or a 100-year-old-virginal-masochist-vampire-stalker for a boyfriend?

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Beneath A Moonless Sky

It’s too quiet where I am, and all I can hear is the murmur of the air-conditioner. With all the buzz regarding the “50 Shades of Grey” movie and how it totally bastardized BDSM (as its critics say), I give you this song from the musical ‘Love Never Dies’ by the wonderful Andrew Lloyd Webber. I need not say more ‘coz I’m pretty sure the song would speak for itself.

This is the Australian cast with Ben Lewis and Anna O’Byrne.

This is the original version (with slightly different lyrics) sung by Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess.

As a bonus, here’s the link to the whole Australian production.


They Say That Falling In Love Is Wonderful

It’s almost Valentine’s Day, and I feel that I have to post something related to it to somehow honor the day of love. Here’s one of my favorite love songs.