Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Yvette Tan Interview at Field Trips to the Real World

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On June - 20 - 2012

Speculative Fiction writer, and Usok contributor, Yvette Tan was interviewed by Charlene F. Sawit on her blog “Field Trips to the Real World” as part of an ongoing series called “Postcards on Writing.” The interview came out on the 4th of June, but I haven’t had the time to link to it until now. Go check it out if you haven’t already: Yvette talks about good stories, what creeps her out, and being labelled as a horror writer.

Event: Toycon 2012

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On June - 14 - 2012

Just a reminder that the 11th annual Philippine Toys, Hobbies and Collectibles Convention (TOYCON) takes place this weekend. Here’s some relevant info:

11th Philippine Toys, Hobbies and Collectibles Convention 2012
June 15-16-17,2012
10:00am – 9:00 pm
SM Megatrade Hall 1-2-3, and Conference Room

June 15 – retailers day only (toys, comics and collectibles sales)
June 16 – retailers day, cosplay contest, exhibits, bands etc.
June 17 – retailers day, cosplay contest, exhibits, bands etc.

www.toyconph.com
www.facebook.com/toyconph
www.twitter.com/officialtoycon

Program schedule – http://www.toyconph.com/p/program.html

Contest mechanics – http://www.toyconph.com/p/contest.html
(no need to pay any registration fee to join in our contest)

Contact us only at
email: toyconph@gmail.com
PM us: http://www.facebook.com/messages/toyconph

TICKETS
entrance fee: P100/day

For Philippine komik fans, there will also be an artists’ alley where some of your favorite local artists will be doing sketches, and likely selling their komiks as well. Here’s the list as posted on 100 Araw ng Komiks:

JUN 16

Heubert Khan Michael (Vampirella)

Gilbert Monsanto (Bayan Knights)

Lui Antonio

Elmer Damaso (Hero Factoty / former Culture Crash)

JUN 16 – 17

Ariel Atienza (KOMIKON / West Side / Class)

Lyndon Gregorio (KOMIKON / Beerkada)

Jon Zamar (KOMIKON / Digmaang Salinlahi)

Sherry Zamar (KOMIKON)

Lei Muncal (KOMIKON)

Melvin Calingo (former Culture Crash)

Joanah Calingo (Cresci Prophecies)

Freely Abrigo (Kulas / Kapitan Tog)

Tepai Pascual (Mark 9 verse 27 / Maktan 1521)

Mel Casipit (Mukat)

Rommel Estanislao (Lipad / Tupang Itim / Bruho Barbero)

Ruben Nacion (BENNAC Cartoons)

Filipino Spec Fic Authors on Ray Bradbury’s Importance

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On June - 11 - 2012

Last June 5, science fiction master Ray Bradbury passed away. GMA7 News Online had an article up yesterday featuring the thoughts of Filipino speculative fiction writers on the death of the great author. Included in the piece are Karl de Mesa, Joseph Nacino, Carljoe Javier, Dean Francis Alfar, and Timothy James M. Dimacali.

Exhibit: Comics Arthology

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On June - 6 - 2012

This Friday, SM Megamall is hosting an exhibit of artwork from a host of independent komiks artists. Dubbed “Comics Arthology – Imagination Takes Flight“, the exhibit opens 6pm on June 8 at the Artasia Gallery, 4th Floor, SM Megamall (Bldg A). Visitors will also have the opportunity to buy the artwork on display.

LONTAR is a new quarterly literary journal of Southeast Asian speculative fiction in English, published and distributed by Math Paper Press in Singapore. It’s now open to unsolicited submissions — it uses an online submissions system (you can’t submit by email) and you can find that and the guidelines here. They are accepting not only fiction, but non-fiction, poetry, and comics. Of special interest to Filipinos is that the poetry editor is none other than our very own Kristing Ong Muslim.

Here’s an excerpt from their guidelines, which should give you an idea of what they’re looking for:

The editors of LONTAR are looking for quality literary writing with elements of the fantastic*, which is in some way connected with the cultures, traditions, mythologies, folk religions, and/or daily life in Southeast Asia**. While we are happy to look at works by writers outside of the region, we want to actively encourage Southeast Asian writers to submit your work.

Ebook Launch: Philippine Speculative Fiction volumes 3 and 4

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 29 - 2012

Continuing the digitization of the first and longest running Philippine published speculative fiction anthology, volumes 3 and 4 of the Philippine Speculative Fiction anthology have now been released by Flipside Digital Content.  (Volumes 1 and 2 were released  in April.) I remember PSF4 very well, because it’s the first PSF launch I attended. It’s also the first anthology I attempted to review (never did finish it, but here are parts one, two, and three.)

Here are the descriptions and TOCs from Amazon:

PHILIPPINE SPECULATIVE FICTION 3 (Dean Alfar, Editor.)

A diet drug gone wrong; A boy born with winged feet; A murder mystery set in a refrigerator. The Philippine Speculative Fiction series are anthologies that showcase the rich variety of Philippine literature: between these covers you will find magic realism next to science fiction, traditional fantasy beside slipstream, and imaginary worlds rubbing shoulders with alternate Philippine history — demonstrating that the literature of the fantastic is alive and well in the Philippines.

Contributors include:

  • MRR Arcega
  • FH Batacan
  • Joanna Paula Cailas
  • Ian Rosales Casocot
  • Dominique Cimafranca
  • Marguerite Alcazaren de Leon
  • Timothy Dimacali
  • Andrew Drilon
  • Raymond Falgui
  • Sarge Lacuesta
  • Apol Lejano-Massebieau
  • Joseph Nacino
  • Alexander Marcos Osias
  • Elyss Punsalan
  • Rodello Santos
  • Yvette Natalie U. Tan
  • Charles Tan
  • Mia Tijam
  • Marianne Villanueva
  • Alfred A. Yuson

[PSF 4 after the cut.]

Read the rest of this entry »

Kwentillion is Coming

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 24 - 2012

EDIT: Just received an update from Komikon that our stage time has been moved from 300pm to 330pm. Please adjust your schedules accordingly :)

I’m proud to announce that the first issue of Kwentillion, a young-adult themed comics+fiction+features magazine (print only as of now, but digital in a few months) that I’m co-editing with Budjette Tan (Trese), will be launched this Saturday, 3:00 3:30 p.m. at the Summer Komikon, and will be available in stores soon after (we’ll hopefully have a few copies to sell at the Komikon, but that’ll only be a handful.)

This run is something of a test, and if the issue performs well, it could become a regular magazine. I’ve talked about this project a bit on Facebook and Twitter, and in a recent Buhay Indie post,but I haven’t had the time to plug it yet here on Rocket Kapre.

Kwentillion is a bi-monthly (eventually, we hope), black and white magazine (with an eight-page colored spread every issue) that features reviews and previews of young adult books, interviews with creators, and articles which tackle a wide variety of topics of interest to the YA community. For this issue, the story contents are reprints:

  • For comics, we have “The Last Datu” by Budjette Tan & Kajo Baldisimo, “Poso Maximo:A Fair Trade” by Robert Magnuson, “High Society” by myself and Hannah Buena, “Skygypsies” by TJ Dimacali and JohnRay Bumanglag;
  • For prose, we’re reprinting Andrew Drilon’s “The Secret Origin of Spin-Man”.

We have interviews with Chester Ocampo (who also did the cover – you can see a draft below), and Manix Abrera, YA book previews from YA book bloggers Chachic Fernandez and Tina Matanguihan, a discourse on the benefits of fanfiction by Anna Sanchez, and the first of what I hope will be a regular column from YA advocate and blogger Tarie Sabido. We’ve got a feature on Filipino artists to follow online, showcasing their art as part of the 8 page colored spread. We also have resources for aspiring writers and artists: “How to Draw a Tikbalang” from Trese artist Kajo Baldisimo, and a primer on Philippine Folk Magic, written by me and illustrated by our Alternative Alamat artist Mervin Malonzo.

Kwentillion, I think, could be a great boon to Filipino readers and creators. It’s important that Philippine comics be regularly and widely available, in a quality printed format. It’s important that more Philippine young adult content be created, so our young people have the option of reading about heroes/heroines who are more like them. It’s important that a publication exists that treats those popular yet oft disparaged genres – YA, science fiction/fantasy, comics – with an enthusiastic heart, a respectful attitude, and a critical eye.

I’m sure the first issue isn’t perfect – I promise you we’ll do everything we can to improve every issue, but to do that, we need this small 3,000 print run to be a smashing success. If you’re a fan of YA books or comics, an avid SFF reader or an aspiring creator, if you feel the same gnawing hunger I do when I look at the bookstore shelves and dream of what could be there… now’s the time to be heard.

Summer Komikon, Bayanihan Center, Pasig City. Saturday, May 26, 3:00 p.m. See you there.

Here's one of the work-in-progress sketches Chester (Ocampo) sent us. The official cover will be revealed on Saturday.

 

Talking Points: Decolonizing and World SF

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 21 - 2012

There were several posts that went up last week dealing with matters that will be of interest to Philippine SF writers and readers. Couple this with the recent discussion on diversity, and you’ve got a very enlightening series of articles on the state of the genre. Check them out:

  • World SF Blog‘s Non-Western SF Roundtable (Part One) (Part Two). Participating authors are  Aliette de Bodard (France), Joyce Chng (Singapore), the controversial blogger known as Requires Hate (Thailand), Rochita Loenen-Ruiz (Philippines/The Netherlands), Ekaterina Sedia (Russian/USA) and Rachel Swirsky (USA, in Part 2).

Excerpts:

Aliette: … There are lots of factors at play that explain why outsider narratives are more popular; but one of the main reasons is one of audience: as Ekaterina mentions in her blog post: at this junction in time, the dominant audience in the field is Western (of US/European culture), and outsider narratives have a better grasp of how to present (ie exotify) elements of a setting in a digestible manner for the mainstream (White) audience. This is very much regrettable, and I really do wish that people would stop using the word authenticity altogether, as it’s either used as an exclusionary factor, to police who within a community has the right to write about the culture (something I find utterly fraught with problems); or as a well-meaning but somewhat hollow reassurance that the writer’s world feels real (the only ones equipped to judge authenticity of, say, a story set in Brazil are Brazilian people, and I certainly would never dream of qualifying someone’s story set there with that word!).

xxx

Ekaterina: Another point is that the insiders will disagree. Some will like it, some won’t, and some will hate it because it is by an outsider. And the lesson for the writer there is not to say “Well, screw it, haters gonna hate, I’ll just write whatever because you cannot please anyone”. You’re still responsible for doing as good a job as you can. And accepting that your best might not be good enough for some people, and their opinions are also valid. Don’t trot out the natives who loved your work, don’t tell people who dislike it that they’re wrong because another person from the same culture liked it. So really, if you want approval, stay out of other people’s cultures. Nations won’t get together to sign waivers that say that you are free to appropriate whatever and no one can say anything about it ever. People will be angry, and they will be right to be angry. If it upsets you, reconsider your motivation.

Rachel: … Speaking as a western writer, and as someone who has attempted to engage in writing with other kinds of privilege, I am inclined to agree that it’s inescapable that a privileged person will write a narrative that is rooted in their privilege. One can minimize exoticism, I hope, but I don’t think it’s possible to erase it.

As a writer of science fiction, particularly, though, I see myself as having an obligation to present a future that is, as Joyce says, for everyone. As I should have said in the other roundtable, despite the American propensity (including mine) toward tunnel vision, reality is global, and (barring certain speculative scenarios), the future should be global or globally influenced as well. I think there’s an obligation for Western writers who work within science fiction to engage with both western and non-western cultures. Otherwise, we do end up with white-washed (western-washed) futures and I think that the effect of this on the cultural imagination is wholly negative; the future isn’t just for white westerners. I think it’s a particularly pernicious form of erasure.

Excerpt:

In “Betraying the Babaylan,” Araneta Cruz describes the technique of divide and conquer which the Spanish employed to disempower the Babaylan and effectively erase them. The first thing that the Spanish did was to alienate the effeminate Babaylan from the women priestesses. They also gained the support of the tribal elite in their cause to wipe out the Babaylan through the use of bribery and promises of power. With the male Babaylan and the elite on their side, the Spanish friars went on to accuse the Babaylan of being of the devil and of practicing witchcraft.

While I narrate events that are specific to the Philippines, I find myself wondering if such events were also mirrored in countries that were colonized by foreign powers. How pervasive is that other culture? How much has it stolen from or killed of the original culture?

When I look at my country, I see how much these things have harmed our psyche and I also see the resilience of our culturebearers who employed whatever means was at their disposal to preserve our culture. Even so, the wounds have spread deep and there are certain things that demonstrate to us how deeply rooted colonialism is.

Even to this day, we see young women buying whitening creams because white is perceived as the ideal color. I long to tell my fellow Filipinos, there is nothing more beautiful than kayumanggi (brown).

Call for Submissions: Philippine Speculative Fiction Volume 8

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 18 - 2012

 

Editors Dean and Nikki Alfar invite you to submit short fiction for consideration for Philippine Speculative Fiction volume 8.

Philippine Speculative Fiction is a yearly anthology series, which collects a wide range of stories that define, explore, and sometimes blur the boundaries of science fiction, fantasy, horror, and all things in between. The anthology has been shortlisted for the Manila Critics’ Circle National Book Award, and multiple stories from each volume have been cited in roundups of the year’s best speculative fiction across the globe.

First-time authors are more than welcome to submit; good stories trump literary credentials any time.

Submissions must be:
1. speculative fiction—i.e., they must contain strong elements and/or sensibilities of science fiction, fantasy, horror, magic realism, alternate history, folklore, superheroes, and/or related ‘nonrealist’ genres and subgenres
2. written in English
3. authored by persons of Philippine ethnicity and/or nationality

Submissions are preferred to be:
1. original and unpublished
2. no shorter than 1,000 words and no longer than 7,500
3. written for an adult audience
In all cases, these preferences can be easily overturned by exceptionally well-written pieces. In the case of previously-published work—if accepted, the author will be expected to secure permission to reprint, if necessary, from the original publishing entity, and to provide relevant publication information.

Submission details:
1. No multiple or simultaneous submissions—i.e., submit only one story, and do not submit that story to any other publishing market until you have received a letter of regret from us. We don’t mind if you submit to contests.
2. All submissions should be in Rich Text Format (saved under the file extension ‘.rtf’), and emailed to nikkialfar@gmail.com, with the subject line ‘PSF8 submission’.
3. The deadline for submissions is 11 p.m., Manila time, September 15, 2012. Letters of acceptance or regret will be sent out no later than one month after the deadline.

Editors’ notes:
1. Please don’t forget to indicate your real name in the submission email! If you want to write under a pseudonym, that’s fine, but this can be discussed upon story acceptance. Initially, we just need to know who we’re talking to.
2. If you’d like to write a cover letter with your brief bio and publishing history (if applicable), do feel free to introduce yourself—but not your story, please. If it needs to be explained, it’s probably not ready to be published.
3. We advise authors to avoid fancy formatting—this will just be a waste of your time and ours, since we will, eventually, standardize fonts and everything else to fit our established house style.

Authors of selected stories will receive Php500 pesos in compensation, as well as digital copies of the book.

Please help spread the word! Feel free to copy this and paste it anywhere you see fit that happens to be legal. :)

Thanks,
Dean and Nikki Alfar, co-editors

Join us… Jooooiiiin uuussss… *hiss*

TOC: Horror – Filipino Fiction For Young Adults

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 17 - 2012

Editors Dean Alfar and Kenneth Yu have announced the table of contents for their upcoming young adult horror anthology:

Honesty Hour – Gabriela Lee
Eat Me – Kally Hiromi R. Arsua
Mommy Agnes – Vince Torres
The Running Girl – Elyss Punsalan
Education By Ate Flora – Renelaine Bontol
The New Teacher – Alexander Osias
Gago’s Got Your Back – Andrew Drilon
Dan’s Dreams – Eliza Victoria
Itching To Get Home – Joseph Montecillo
Lola’s House – Fidelis Tan
A Yellow Brick Road Valentine – Charles Tan
Lucia, The Nightmare Hunter – Kate Osias
Frozen Delight – EK Gonzales
Misty – Isabel Yap

Congratulations to all the contributors, and the editors as well!

TAG CLOUD

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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.

Photos

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