I’m the kind of person who often gets dragged by friends and family to various events at the last minute (a.k.a. kaladkarin!), or gets notified just a few days before. I rarely get to mark personal dates in advance, or know about things before they happen. This also means I miss out on a lot of events — and I’ve already missed out on several book/lit events this year because I wasn’t really paying attention to what’s going on. 😛

A few days ago, I got an e-mail that (thankfully) broke that long passive/reactionary streak. November 15, 2013 has been blocked off on my calendar, and readers/writers should do so, too.

What’s going to happen on that particular Friday? Check it out:

OK, so here’s the deal. This year’s Philippine International Literary Festival, dubbed Text and the City, will be held from November 11-15. On the last day, the Filipinas Heritage Library (FHL), Ayala Foundation Inc. (AFI), and the Ayala Museum are teaming up for POPtastik Pinoy!. From 8:30AM-8:30PM, local lit lovers can attend talks headed by accomplished writers in different story formats and popular media. There will also be panel discussions, a book signing, a flash fiction masterclass, a rundown of book-writing basics, and a poetry reading. Confirmed speakers include:

Here’s the schedule for November 15 so you can choose which ones you wanna go to.

Out of all the activities slated for that day, I’m most excited for Working with Different Genres, Isagani Cruz’s talk, and City Fiction 100.

Speaking of that masterclass… flash fiction writers, better get your game on.

Only 25 slots are available for City Fiction 100, but the good news is that you can send in as many flash fiction pieces as you want. Reminds me of old TV ads for raffles/sweepstakes (“the more entries you send in, the more chances of winning!”) 😛 But yeah, start writing those 100-word pieces and send them all in as early as you can; flash fiction pieces submitted early will be prioritized. Don’t wait for the November 8 deadline!

Some guidelines, taken from the official press release:

  • Flash fiction pieces should be about real or imagined cities, be in .doc format, and cannot exceed 100 words.
  • E-mail submissions should have “City Fiction 100 Entry” as the subject heading
  • Include your full name, mobile number, and a short bio comprised of only three to four sentences
  • Entries have to be sent to Camille Dela Rosa (cvdelarosa@nbdb.gov.ph) and Verne Ahyong (litfest@filipinaslibrary.org.ph).

AFI will announce the names of accepted participants by November 11. and those accepted will pay a PhP1,000 fee for both the masterclass and full access to the other activities. They will also get a copy of Drifting House by Krys Lee — I don’t know if it’s already a signed copy, but if it’s not, she’s having a book signing anyway. Also, those attending the masterclass get to workshop only one of their submitted stories.

(Disclosure: I’m also interested in attending that masterclass, and I’m trying to write my own entries. Operative word is trying. Haven’t done microfic in years, and “rusty” doesn’t even begin to describe it.)

Got other questions about POPtastik Pinoy!? Contact Verne at (+63-2) 759-8288 local 46 or ahyong.vy@ayalafoundation.org. Those who want to register should call Marj Villaflores at (+63-2) 759-8288 local 25, or email litfest@filipinaslibrary.org.ph.

See you at the Ayala Museum on November 15!


Thanks to Verne for getting in touch with me! Original press releases have been uploaded here.

Also, read this PDI article by Neni Sta. Romana Cruz (one of the speakers on the 15th) about the other lit events for November 2013.