Archive for December, 2012

Flipreads Not an Apocalypse Sale

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 21 - 2012

Hey. HEY! The world is still here! Let’s celebrate with a Flipreads Sale, which includes Alternative Alamat and High Society :)

We having a sale on select titles from 12/21/12 until 12/23/12.

Even better, if you purchase a non-free eBook, we’ll throw in Philippine Folk Tales.

Here’s our list of titles on sale:

The Next Big Thing: Writer Blog Meme

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 19 - 2012

Sort of a chain letter for writers, the Next Big Thing is a blog meme whereby authors answer a set of questions about their next book project, and tag other writers/creators for the next cycle. I was tagged by Eliza Victoria, so here are my answers!

1) What is the working title of your next book?

Mythspace: Liftoff. It’s the first collection of what I hope will be many stories told within the Mythspace shared universe. I’m working in collaboration with the wonderful artists Koi Carreon, Borg Sinaban, Jules Gregorio, Mico Dimagiba, Cristina Rose Chua, Paul Quiroga.

2) Where did the idea come from for the book?

Most of my ideas come from an urge to tell speculative fiction stories that draw upon Philippine history, folklore, or mythology. There’s a growing field of creators doing the same, particularly in comics, but most of those projects are oriented toward fantasy and not science fiction. So I wanted to take some of the more familiar elements of Philippine fantasy — the monsters and ghouls that populate many of our mainstream horror movies and stories — and reimagine them as aliens to populate one of the most neglected local SF subgenres, the space opera.

Also: ever since I named the imprint/blog “Rocket Kapre” I’ve been dying to do a story that literalizes that.

3) What genre does your book fall under?

Science Fiction to be general, Space Opera to be more particular, and Portal-Fantasy-Adapted-Mythic-Space-Opera-Squad-Adventure, to invent my own name for it.

4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

If I were to make a movie adaptation of Mythspace, I’d cast completely new actors. I honestly can’t think of many established local actors who can disappear into their roles, and I don’t want the actors to overshadow the characters they’re portraying.

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Tikbalangs in spaaaaaaaace!

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Self-published first, and then I’ll shop it around traditional publishers. No agency system here in the Philippines!

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

Well the book collects 6 stories of varying length, with over two hundred pages of story in total, so it took me about six months of on-and-off work to get the first draft of all the scripts ready.

8)What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

This is really more movie inspired than book inspired. This is my attempt to give the Philippines its Star Wars.

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Can I have a reverse inspiration? Every lazy use of our folklore creatures as superficial monsters, without any attempt to do something new with them.

10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

For Filipino readers, it’s a chance to see the monsters of your childhood in a way that you’ve never seen them before.

For non-Filipino readers, it’s a chance to see an attempt at space opera that is informed by a rich mythology that you don’t usually see in science fiction (as opposed to say, the Norse myths).

And now… TAG, you’re it:

Andrew Drilon

Mina Esguerra

Macoy Tang

Noel Pascual

Recent Scheherazade’s Facade Reviews (December 2012)

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 18 - 2012

I saw a few new reviews of Scheherazade’s Facade–the anthology of gender bending stories that I’m a part of–this week (not including the ones on Goodreads), so I’m linking to them here, to encourage readers to give the anthology a try.

The first review comes from Jarla Tangh and, if you don’t mind some spoilers, it provides brief, stylized, summaries for each of the stories in the book.

The second review is from Kellan Sparver, with what is now my favorite one-line review for one of my stories ever: Stories I found of special mention: …  ”Kambal Kulam”, by Paolo Chikiamco, for being pure crack-fic.” Bonus points: The quote that starts the review comes from my story as well. Woo hoo!


Panel by Panel: A Dialogue on Comics in Southeast Asia

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 8 - 2012

The Fine Arts Program of the Ateneo de Manila University is inviting all to join them on December 10, Monday, 430 to 630pm at SEC LEC B, Ateneo de Manila University for:

Panel by Panel: A Dialogue on Comics in Southeast Asia

Featuring Singapore’s Otto Fong and Cheng Tju teaming up with Manila’s comic book creators for a talk and roundtable on the state of comics in Southeast Asia

About the guests:

Otto Fong is the creator of *Sir Fong’s Adventures*, a popular sci-fi comic book series that shines the spotlight on science and scientists in Asia. He is also a bilingual playwright, having written the first Restricted Mandarin theatre play (*Another Tribe. 1992*) in Singapore, and two Singapore Art Fest plays *(Mr Beng. 2000. HERStory. 2011)**.*

Lim Cheng Tju is an educator who has written about history and popular culture in Singapore. His articles have appeared in the Southeast Asian Journal of Social Science, Journal of Popular Culture and Print Quarterly. He is the country editor (Singapore) for the International Journal of Comic Art and also the co-editor of Liquid City 2, an anthology of Southeast Asian comics published by Image Comics.


BLTXXX: Better Living Through Xeroxography, XMas 2012 Edition

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 4 - 2012


Just in time for your Christmas needs, December 7 is the third installment of the semi-annual small press expo Better Living Through Xeroxography! It’s still at Ilyong’s, like the previous events, so if you’re interested in viewing/purchasing/sampling the independent and DIY publishing scene, head on over.

Steampunk Revolution Official Launch

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 3 - 2012

The cake at the World Fantasy Conference launch of Steampunk Revolution, which I could not attend due to living halfway around the world. SteamCake!

While it’s been available in some places for a while now, December 1 was the official release day for Steampunk III: Steampunk Reloaded, the Ann Vandermeer edited anthology which reprints “On Wooden Wings”, my steampunk story from Philippine Speculative Fiction volume 6. That story is set in the same universe as High Society, albeit much earlier in the timeline, and the first part of the High Society prologue will be an adaptation of that story. Here’s some early art from Hannah, just to prove that we’re working on it:

Image source:

Even for those of you who’ve read “On Wooden Wings” already, Steampunk Revolution is definitely worth your time. Just look at the list of contributors: Christopher Barzak, Paolo Chikiamco, Amal El-Mohtar, Jeffrey Ford, Lev Grossman, Samantha Henderson, Leow Hui Min Annabeth, N.K. Jemison, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Malissa Kent, Andrew Knighton, Nick Mamatas, David Erik Nelson, Morgan Johnson, and Fritz Swanson, Garth Nix, Ben Peek,  Cherie Priest, Margaret Ronald, Christopher Rowe, Vandana Singh, Bruce Sterling, Karin Tidbeck, Lavie Tidhar, Catherynne M. Valente, Genevieve Valentine, Jeff VanderMeer, Carrie Vaughn, J.Y. Yang, Jaymee Goh, Margaret Killjoy, Austin Sirkin. It’s an especially good volume for steampunk readers from the Philippines because part of the purpose of the anthology is to showcase stories that break the typical Victorian England paradigm that many associate too closely with the genre. Here’s the concept in greater detail:

What if Steampunk had a revolution?  What if this genre that is so closely tied to the past burst forth into the future – breaking down definitional barriers and forging ahead?  Steampunk Revolution features a renegade collective of writers —including steampunk legends as well as hot, new talents—who are rebooting the steam-driven past and powering it into the future with originality, wit, and adventure.  Going far beyond corsets and goggles, Steampunk Revolution is not just a ride in your great-great granddad’s zeppelin—now it’s a much wilder ride.

Original image:

The book also has some beautiful illustrations and design-work from John Coulthart, an example of which you can see above, and he has a few more that you can see in his blog.

Here are a few early reviews of the anthology to help you make up your minds, and hey, once you’ve read it, let us know what you think!

  • Publisher’s Weekly: “VanderMeer’s follow-up to previous similarly themed anthologies targets established fans of the retro-infatuated steampunk movement.”
  • Shelf Awareness: “Steampunk isn’t just about Victorians playing with cogs and gears; these stories (and a few essays) reveal some of the latest steps in this branch of speculative fiction’s evolution.”




About Me

Rocket Kapre is an imprint of Eight Ray Sun Publishing Inc. (a new Philippine-based publisher), dedicated to bringing the very best of Philippine Speculative Fiction in English to a worldwide audience by means of digital distribution. More info can be found at our About section at the top of the page.