What is #RP612Fic (2016 edition)

What is #RP612Fic (2016 edition)

In one week, this coming Sunday, we celebrate the Independence Day of the Philippines. By celebrate, of course, it’s time once again for #RP612Fic. Those of you who have participated before know the drill, but I’ve updated the primer a little this year, so both old hands and mystified newbies may want to read on. [...]

Read More >>

Call for Stories: SUBMIT to Philippine Speculative Fiction 11

Call for Stories: SUBMIT to Philippine Speculative Fiction 11

  Editors Kate Osias and Elyss Punsalan invite you to submit short fiction for consideration for Philippine Speculative Fiction volume 11. PSF is a yearly anthology series, showcasing 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 National [...]

Read More >>

Book Launch: Philippine Speculative Fiction X

Book Launch: Philippine Speculative Fiction X

The tenth edition of the annual anthology is already released (digitally): Flipside  Amazon Kobo Google Play iTunes Weightless Books Everyone is also invited to the official book launch: Come join us at the Philippine Speculative Fiction X book launch! We’re celebrating the tenth volume of this trailblazing annual anthology on Saturday, May 7, at 2 p.m. at [...]

Read More >>

Support Southeast Asian Steampunk: The SEA is Ours Crowdfunding Campaign

Support Southeast Asian Steampunk: The SEA is Ours Crowdfunding Campaign

It’s no secret that the need for representation in genre fiction is one of the reasons that I write, and I’m very proud (alongside  Kate Osias and TJ Dimacali among others) to be a part of a Southeast Asian steampunk anthology: The SEA is Ours. The editors/publisher are crowdsourcing funds to help pay writers and [...]

Read More >>

Call for Submissions: People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction

Call for Submissions: People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction

The “[Blank] Destroy [Blank] special issues of Lightspeed/Nightmare/Fantasy Magazines create spaces for diversity within speculative fiction through Kickstarter-funded special issues that focus on a particular community. Next up is something that writers and readers of Filipino speculative fiction should take note of — a special issue for People of Colo(u)r, a somewhat loaded term that is [...]

Read More >>

Lauriat, the Filipino-Chinese Speculative Fiction Anthology edited by Charles Tan, is being discounted on Smashwords until October 25. While listed at 6.99 US dollars on the site, just use this coupon code at Smashwords, you can purchase the ebook of Lauriat for $0.99: NG66N. You can read an interview I did with Charles about Lauriat here.

Lauriat was reviewed positively in Publisher’s Weekly, and includes my alternate history story (mentioned in that review) called the “Captain’s Nephew.” It mixes General Jose Ignacio Paua — the Chinese General of the Katipunan — and one of the Philippines’ most famous folklore creatures. Here’s an excerpt:

Batangas.1896.

The forest that covered the slopes of Mount Pico de Loro was thick with dense underbrush and slim, swaying trees whose trunks formed a lattice of rough bark and sharp edges. The trunks were almost invisible beneath the shelter of the forest canopy, deeper lines of black obstructing stray beams of moonlight and frustrating the efforts of one Chinese man. Jose Ignacio Paua swung his bolo once more at a particularly stubborn patch of bamboo, then stopped to wipe his brow. Not for the first time that night, the Katipunero mused that the forest was a decidedly unwelcoming place. This was not, however, an observation that deterred him. Paua was a man accustomed to walking where he was not wanted, in places where he was in danger from far worse than an errant branch.

Of course, there was always the chance that something more sinister than a tree was lurking on this mountain. In fact, that was what Paua was counting on.

After a good three hours of stumbling and hacking his way up the mountainside, Paua eventually emerged onto a flat outcropping within sight of the beak-shaped summit which gave the mountain its name. This high above sea level, the night breeze was cold enough to make Paua shiver, and strong enough to make his queue — his long, braided ponytail — dance. For a moment, the Katipunero looked to the east, and fancied he could see all the way to Imus, and the scowling visage of Pantaleon Garcia.

“This is a fool’s errand,” Pantaleon had told him. “You’re chasing after tuba-fueled nightmares, or some oddly shaped shadow.”

“Shadows don’t smoke cigars,” Paua had replied as he mounted his horse. “I’ll be in the area anyway for recruitment. No harm in taking a look.”

“Of course not. Not for you. Not when there’s an adventure to be had.”

That was partly true. At twenty four years old, Paua still had much of the restless energy which had driven him, six years ago, to leave China for the Philippines. But it was more than that. Paua moved to the very edge of the outcropping and took in the sight of his adopted home. To the south, the mountains of Batangas rose above the rolling green countryside; to the north the island of Bataan was just visible over the water. Pantaleon was his friend, but there was no way that anyone who had lived for forty years in this country could fully understand Paua’s hunger to explore it. 

It was only when Paua reluctantly tore himself away from the view that he realized that he was not alone. A man in dark red clothes leaned against one of the taller trees, a somewhat twisted looking plant with round, low-hanging leaves. The overhanging branches kept most of the man’s face in shadow, but Paua could see enough to identify him as Chinese.

“Are you lost, neighbor?” said the man in red. “You’re a long way from home.”

When Paua made no reply, the other man moved out of the shade of the tree. As the man moved closer, Paua scrutinized his face carefully under the moonlight.

“I could show you the way back down the mountain,” said the man in red. His face was round and ruddy, his smile open and guileless. “I’m on my way back down myself.”

“Oh, I remember you now,” said Paua in Hokkien. “That’s clever.”

The man in red stopped, his expression darkening. “I’m sorry, I did not quite hear you.”

“I was commending you on your ingenuity,” Paua said, shifting back to Tagalog. “I figured it would be difficult to try your usual trick, given that none of my relations would be anywhere near Cavite, let alone this mountain. Taking the face of an almost forgotten cousin and assuming the role of a helpful stranger… that was unexpected.”

The man in red drew a large cigar from his pocket, and placed it between his lips. The tip of the cigar flared, and in that instant the man vanished. In his stead hulked a gangly figure that easily topped seven feet, its arms so long that one hairy hand was at the level of its knobby knees. The other hand still held the cigar, and against the backdrop of the night sky, the dull red light cast the figure’s equine head into relief. 

 

“A hunter.” The Tikbalang’s sigh sounded like a horse’s nicker. “Hunters make for such poor sport. As you will, then. Shall it be salt first? One of your Christian beads? Or simply the business end of your blade?”

“What? No, no.” Paua slowly returned the bolo to the sheath which hung from his waist. “I’m not here to hurt you.”

The Tikbalang whinnied, and gave its head a shake, its long mane trailing behind like a coarse and tangled pennant. “Let us presume for a moment that your intentions have any bearing on what actually happens this night. Why are you here then, banyaga?” 

Paua felt a rush of anger, but fought it down. One did not begin a courtship with threats and bombast. Instead Paua forced a smile and said: “I’m here to recruit you.”

I missed plugging this when it came out in August, so time to rectify that: Kenneth Yu, the man behind Philippine Genre Stories, (finally) has a collection of his short stories out. It’s called “Mouths to Speak, Voices to Sing” Stories by Kenneth Yu, and if that title sounds familiar, it’s because that’s the name of Kyu’s story in our first issue of Usok, which is also a part of this collection.It also includes the disturbing short, “Cherry Clubbing” which took 3rd place in the 3rd Philippine Graphic Fiction Awards.

Here’s the list of stories:

  • Mouths to Speak, Voices to Sing
  • The Sparrows of Climaco Avenue
  • The Kiddie Pool
  • When You Let It Go
  • House 1.0
  • Cricket
  • Oplan: Bleach
  • Cherry Clubbing
  • The Concierto of Senor Lorenzo
  • Spider Hunt
  • Little Hands, Little Feet
  • Controller 13
  • All That We May See
  • One Morning at the Bank
  • Lost for Words
  • Beats

And here are the stores where you can buy your digital copy:

Exhibit: “Here Be Dragons”

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 19 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

For those interested in the visual arts in general, or children’s book illustration in particular, beginning this Friday at 6pm the Ayala Museum will be hosting a preview of selected artworks by Jon Jaylo for the children’s book, “Here Be Dragons” by Victor Ocampo. Victor’s a Filipino spec fic author, and when I asked him about the book and the exhibit, he described the story as : “a children’s fantasy story (that happens to be set in the same universe as all of my short stories)… Jon Jaylo… is known for his very surrealistic Rene Marritte-inspired works. His art is a strange blend of dark mystery and humor.”

The exhibit should be open for around two weeks, so if you’re like me and can’t make it on Friday, you can catch it on another day. The book itself will be launched on a later date.

LONTAR #1 is Now Available (in Singapore)

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 19 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

I’m happy to announce that the first issue of LONTAR, the Journal of Southeast Asian Speculative Fiction, is now available — well, in Singapore. BUT, it will be available as a digital download sometime in the future, and I’ll let you know when that happens. I have a non-fiction piece in this issue, in the form of a fictional course guide for a university where you can major in courses such as Philippine Sorcery, Relic Magic (anting-antings), and Healing Magic. The book seems beautifully designed, so if you’re in Singapore or have a friend there, check it out!

EDIT: You can order the physical copies online at BooksActually Web Store (http://booksactually.bigcartel.com/product/lontar-edited-by-jason-erik-lundberg) and HipVan (http://www.hipvan.com/products/lontar-edited-by-jason-erik-lundberg).

New Fiction from Mia Tijam at “Bewildering Stories”

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 18 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Our friend Mia Tijam has a new piece of Speculative Fiction out on Bewildering Stories. Entitled “Quartered in the Sunset“, it may be particularly interesting to people in the call center/ BPO industry. After you read the story, go on and see the discussion between Don Webb and Mia in the same issue.

Komiks on Your Sneakers

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 18 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Komiks and fashion tie-ups seem to be a thing these days — but this new Converse event will feature Kajo and Bow actually, personally, sketching on your shoes! Of course, then you need to frame your shoes and buy another pair…

From the official FB page of the event: “Filipino comic book artists Kajo Baldisimo and Bow Guerrero, of Trese and The Dark Colony Book I : Mikey Recio & the Secret of the Demon Dungeon fame will be at the Converse Philippines flagship store in the new Glorietta, this Saturday.

Get a chance to have your Converse shoes customized with one-of-a-kind designs by the artists, or also customize them yourself with studs in the “Punk Your Chucks” section.

Be one of the first four people to buy a pair of Chucks at the event and instantly get your brand spankin’ new Chucks punked (two for Trese, and two for Dark Colony) on the spot.

If you brought your own authentic Chucks (or whatever Converse sneaker you have) you can join the raffle to win a chance to get them punked. Four will be drawn (two for Trese, and two for Dark Colony). Just show your authentic Converse product at registration to be able to join.

We’ll also be giving away some Converse GCs.

If you don’t win the raffle, we still provide you with awesome materials for you to Punk Your Chucks at the customization area.”

Comics and Manga Workshop with Tintin Pantoja: September Batch

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 17 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Awesome Filipina comics creator Tintin Pantoja (“Who is AC?“) sent me word that a new batch of her comics and manga creating workshops is starting this Saturday. Says Tintin: “This new eight-week session emphasis making short comics exercises, both your own and with partners. Projects will include jam comics, drawing in different styles, creating mini-comics, and more! By the end of the workshop, you’ll have a portfolio of stories to post on your website and to show off at the next Komikon. We’ll also develop original ideas for future long-form projects. Call 0928-5061046 or email tintinp@gmail.com for details.”

Aklatan 2013 Map and Reminder

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 6 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

 

Just a reminder everyone: Aklatan 2013, the first All Filipino Book Fair, is tomorrow. We’ll be there with limited stocks of all five currently available Mythspace stories — each comic is PHP 60.00, but you can buy the set of 5 for PHP 240.00. A few copies of Kwentillion will be available too. Here’s a map to our table (but in case there are last minute changes, just look for us — we’ll be there somewhere!)

I’ll be there from the opening at 8 until around 1, and Koi Carreon (Mythspace: Lift Off) and Borg Sinaban (Piladokomiks and the forthcoming Mythspace: Unfurling of Wings) will be there by around 11.

Hope to see you guys there!

Comic creator and comic critic Adam David’s long rumored dissection/analysis/love-letter to Robert Magnuson’s “Kuting Magiting” is now up at the QBCC site, and it’s a whopper. In Adam’s own words, the essay focuses on “the elaboration of various formalist aspects exclusive to comic books and how KUTING MAGITING engages and plays around with these said formalist aspects” but it also touches on Robert’s work in Poso Maximo (republished in Kwentillion) and his children’s picture books.

It’s a long read — I’m still reading it myself — but let me just say that there’s a reason why I’ve been opening recent talks/essays on comics with a story about how my 2 year old daughter “reading” Kuting Magiting. Robert is very, very good, and Adam does a fine job showing us why.

Review of Philippine Speculative Fiction 8 at Rappler

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 4 - 20132 COMMENTS

Florianne Jimenez has a review of the latest volume of the annual Philippine Speculative Fiction anthology (volume 8, edited by Dean and Nikki Alfar) over on Rappler. Take a look! You can buy the ebook from Amazon or Flipreads.

TAG CLOUD

Sponsors

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

PSF6_P1020212PSF6_P1020211PSF6_P1020193PSF6_P1020190