Victoria, Eliza

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On January - 4 - 2011

Eliza Victoria was born in 1986. Her fiction and poetry have appeared in various publications based in the Philippines and abroad, most recently in High Chair, elimae, The Pedestal Magazine, Expanded Horizons, Philippine Speculative Fiction V, and Usok #2. Her children’s book, Jeremy’s Magic Well, is one of the ten winning stories of the Gig Book story-writing contest and is now available from GASFI. She received a Palanca award in 2009 for her poetry collection, “Reportage”. In 2010, her short story, “Reunion“, won the grand prize in the Short Story category of the Philippines Free Press Literary Awards. Visit her blog, or follow her on Twitter.

Eliza Victoria in Stone Telling #2

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 22 - 2010

Stone Telling is an online speculative poetry magazine, released quarterly, and the second issue has a poem from our very own Eliza Victoria. You can read her poem, “Archaeology“, and the other contributions, for free at the site. She also participates in a roundtable discussion. Congratulations once again to Eliza!

Usok 2 is Live

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On November - 3 - 2010

The second issue of Usok is now live! I’ll post my introduction here, but you can also see it on the front page of the new issue itself. I hope you enjoy the stories and the art, and if you do, please comment and encourage the creators, because feedback is sweet ambrosia for writers and artists. For those who are looking for Usok #1, you can get a PDF of the illustrated edition in the Past Issues section of the Usok site.

Introduction: Hidden Selves

Kept you waiting, huh?

It’s been a long journey to get to the second issue of Usok, and while I’ve had to deviate from my original plans for the magazine, I’ve learned a lot about editing, working with creative people, and the speculative fiction scene in the Philippines, during the past year. There were ups and downs, but I have no regrets; sometimes the only way to get any solid data about an endeavor is to try it, to let your plans and dreams drum against the craggy shore of Reality. Usok will continue to evolve from here on out, and I hope you will all continue to support the magazine.

One thing I’ve learned is that it’s easier to find a unifying theme among stories that I’ve already accepted, than it is to assign a theme and wait for the stories to come in. Or maybe it’s just serendipity that all three of our stories in this issue (released days after Halloween) touch upon the theme of hidden selves, the masks we put on for the sake of blending in with “normal” society. It’s a common enough theme in speculative fiction, but it’s one of my favorites, and I hope you’ll find that each of these stories engages it in an intriguing way.

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Usok #2 Release Date: 3 November 2010

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On October - 29 - 2010

The wait is over. Be here on November 3, 2010 for the launch of the second issue of Usok, the webzine of Fantastic Filipino Fiction. Three all new stories, each with a custom piece of art by some of the best digital painters in the country, with a cover by CG Pintor founder K. Lapeña. Please spread the word!

Table of Contents:

100% of Me by Kate Aton-Osias

Elsewhere by Eliza Victoria

The Widow and the Princess of the Dwende by Elaine Cuyegkeng

Artwork by K. Lapeña, Mark Bulahao, MJ Pajaron, and VN Benedicto

RRT: Favorite First Lines in Speculative Fiction

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On September - 9 - 2010

RRT_FaveFirstLines_s

One year ago, 9/9/09, Rocket Kapre officially launched. In celebration of our first year anniversary, here’s a new installment of one of our most popular features: the Rocket Round Table. For this batch, the question – to coincide with the anniversary – is: “What is your favorite first line in speculative fiction?” Prose and graphic novels/comics were fair game (movies and television were not), as were local and foreign works – I only asked that the respondents include any first lines from Filipino-made spec fic that stood out for them. Feel free to add your own in the comments!

Thanks to all those who took time to participate in the round table, and for all those who have supported Rocket Kapre in its first year. Here’s to many more to come!

[Warning: Some language may not be safe for work, or children, or adults who like to pretend they're as innocent as children.]

ELBERT OR Comic book creator, university lecturer, graphic designer, freelance writer, entrepreneur (he’s part of Brain Food, which gives speech and writing workshops) Elbert is a jack of all trades and master of… well, lots. He currently runs Global Art and the Komiksabado Comics Workshop.

Happy first year, RK! How time flies!
I owe much of my interest in current Philippine SF to Dean Alfar’s “Kite of Stars,” and its first line/ paragraph which grabbed firm hold of me and has still not let me go:

The night when she thought she would finally be a star, Maria Isabella du’l Cielo struggled to calm the trembling of her hands, reached over to cut the tether that tied her to the ground, and thought of that morning many years before when she’d first caught a glimpse of Lorenzo du Vicenzio ei Salvadore: tall, thick-browed and handsome, his eyes closed, oblivious to the cacophony of the accident waiting to occur around him.

I wish I could say though that memory allowed me to remember each word, but I admit only to committing the first eleven words. But the blame lies solely on me and my poor memory.

Here’s to the next ten years for Rocket Kapre!

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CATHERINE BATAC WALDERCatherine is based in England and works as a research group administrator at the Department of Earth Sciences, Royal Holloway University of London. From 2005 to 2007, she moved across Norway, Finland and Portugal for a European MPhil. scholarship. Her fiction appears in Big Pulp, Demons of the New Year, Philippines Graphic, Ruin and Resolve Anthology, Expanded Horizons, and Philippines Free Press. She blogs at http://deckshoes.wordpress.com/

Just when the idea occurred to her that she was being murdered she could not tell.” – The Small Assassin, comics adaptation of a tale by Ray Bradbury

At some time near dawn, on March 25, 1913, there came a loud knocking at the front door of the Uyterhoevens’ home in the Dayton View section of Dayton, Ohio.” – The Chess Garden by Brooks Hansen

At first glance, the picture looked like any other in a family album of that time, the sepia shade and tone, the formal poses, the men in solemn Sunday suits and the women, severely coiffed, in long skirts and billowing blouses.” – Fade by Robert Cormier

““I can do this,” I told my squirrel.” - Speed Dating and Spirit Guides by Rod M. Santos

In the tiny lifeboat, she and the alien fuck endlessly, relentlessly.” – Spar by Kij Johnson

My name is Kathy H. I’m thirty-one years old, and I’ve been a carer now for over eleven years.” – Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

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G.M. CORONELA Marketing Management graduate of De La Salle University in 1985, he is a first-time author with no literary background to speak of other than a genuine love of reading and a passion for writing. Coming across back issues of Writer’s Digest a few years ago started his writing career. Some previous personal encounters with the paranormal convinced him to pursue the horror genre. He believes that stories to tell and experiences to share are best put in written words. He is the author of Tragic Theater.

The night wind howls like a wounded dying animal.” (Trese Murder on Balete Drive) — This is a very compelling first line and it engages the reader’s interest in the story.

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DON JAUCIAN - Don regularly reviews books for several publications, both print and on-line. He is the resident bitch of the film blog Pelikula Tumblr. His book dump is http://chinoisdead.livejournal.com

The Ascension of Our Lady Boy – Mia Tijam (PDF of Expanded Horizons #14, which includes the story.)

Let us begin with my earliest memory as a lady: Daddy had complained to Iyay who was my yaya(and his yaya before and his mama’s yaya before that) that I was lacking something strong in my bones and in my hips.

Tijam’s Lady Boy is hands down one of my favorite spec fic stories. It effectively combined Philippine culture, gay-isms and the whole ‘triumph of the heart’ thing. I like how the first line promises a wonderful story, equal parts whimsical and endearing, like Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros and it really delivers.

Visitors – Luis Katigbak

When they first arrived, they transformed themselves into everything we ever secretly wanted to be.

Stories of ‘encounters’ are never amusing. They mostly run as dubious paranoiac rants but in a few words, Katigbak manages to brush off the fluff usually associated with this tripe. ‘Visitors’ is beautiful, a different approach into the Wonderful World of Alien Mysteries; humanized and hopeful.

Brigada – Joey Nacino

When the news came, Captain Fernando Tabora of the Philippine Navy was meeting with the two-man salvage team at the top of Manila Hotel.

I’m a sucker for post-apocalyptic stories and Manila Hotel underwater is just too awesome to ignore. Just like the head of Statue of Liberty chopped off in Cloverfield!

Flicker – Ian Rosales Casocot

Something had apparently come to live, or stir, in the house down the road, that old mansion on the corner before one turned left down Mango Street, which led toward the coconut groves that bordered the farthest end of the village.

Suburban horror stories always fascinate me and Casocot’s ‘Flicker’ definitely sustains the tension from the first sentence to the last. It is eerie, ominous and it’s refreshing to see a horror story devoid of hysterics and cheap scare tactics.

[More after the cut]

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Pinoy Pop Launch

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On May - 1 - 2010

PinoyPopLaunch_s

Guess who has a new day job? With Carljoe taking over the reigns at Metakritiko, the Philippine Online Chronicles decided to give me an entirely new section to edit, which just launched today. It’s called Pinoy Pop, and while I could try to explain what that means here (or what I’ve decided it means at least), that’d be a waste of the handy introductory column I made. Suffice it to say it’ll be covering a lot of stuff that Rocket Kapre readers will find interesting – for instance,would you like a rundown of the promotions and freebies for today’s Free Comic Book Day? You can find that here.

Also, with the release of Iron Man 2 yesterday, Free Comic Book Day today, and I-will-be-your-hero-if-you-vote-for-me Day next week, we’ll be doing a lot of superhero focused articles in the coming week (let’s call it Spandex Week), with articles about their origins, rationale, and how Filipinos relate to them. We’ve also got some thoughts on the use of armor in science fiction and fantasy, as well as a review of superhero komik Bayan Knights.

I’ve got a few familiar Spec Fic writers on the team as well -  Eliza Victoria will be contributing an article on her introduction (initiation?) into tabletop gaming, Carljoe will be contributing articles on comics and an Iron Man 2 review, and Adam David will be doing komiks reviews. Speaking of komiks, I’ll also have an interview with the much respected Mr. Gerry Alanguilan, on the need for komiks criticism, while komiks creator Macoy gives us a perspective of life at the indie tables during the Summer Komikon.

I’m excited to be working with these wonderful individuals, and covering the fantastic, fun, geeky stuff we all know and love. I hope you can make us a part of your daily reading habit. ^_^ And please, if you have a story you think we should be covering, do let us know!

Demons of the New Year is now live

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On March - 24 - 2010

DNY5a

The latest online spec fic anthology from Estranghero Press has now gone live. Go check it out! From the site:

These are the Filipino horrors: the garden-variety demons from hell with plastic forks and spongy tails, the ones in your head that come out to play at midnight, the spirits that make up most of your lives like a Frankenstein monster. We’re letting out all of these things that haunt our days in 2010.

“Demons of the New Year: Horror from the Philippines, edited by Joseph Nacino & Karl de Mesa” is published electronically to make this collection of stories available to a wider international audience. Through this anthology we will be able to show the world that the Filipino writer can create horrors that can scare with the best of them.


Demons of the New Year: TOC Announced

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On February - 13 - 2010

EstrangheroLogoSl

Short post to spread the word that Estranghero Press has announced the table of contents for their Demons of the New Year anthology. Amongst the select few are Ruin and Resolve contributors Catherine Batac Walder and Eliza Victoria. Congratulations to all the writers, and to co-editors Joseph Nacino and Karl de Mesa.

Futurism and the Filipino

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On January - 7 - 2010

cowofthefutureAn interesting discussion is taking place in Adam David’s blog concerning Futurism and Philippine Speculative Fiction, most particularly the lack of “homegrown Futurists” amongst Filipino Spec Fic writers. (Adam’s post has a NSFW pic–consider this a warning–but you can find the post here.) As Adam put it:

“[The local Spec Fic scene's] output has been overwhelmingly Nostalgist/Nativist – from MagRealist fables to (if ever) back-to-basics postapocalypses to manananggal-raver mashups to Brockanian urban dystopias – and if ever someone does do a Futurist take on the Philippines, it is almost always politically infantile, its idioms largely borrowed from another culture’s, ie, Hollywood and Wired.”

The post has elicited some interesting responses in the comments section (which is now much longer than the actual post), with comments from Spec Fic writers like Joseph Nacino, Kenneth Yu, Carljoe Javier and Eliza Victoria. Topics discussed in the comments include: clarifying what is meant by “futurism”, how to get writers to write about specific topics, the socio-cultural background of a Filipino SF writer, the nature of editing, and the future of the Digest of Philippine Genre Stories, amongst others.

(Image source: Behold the cow of the future by thewamphyri CC Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic)

Ruin and Resolve – Cover and TOC Reveal

Posted by Paolo Chikiamco On December - 22 - 2009

Given all that the country has been through in the last two months, September 2009 might seem a lifetime away to some of us.  Yet the damage from Ondoy and Pepeng still remains, and in the coming year the typhoons will return, as they always do.  As Filipinos, as writers, as Spec Fic lovers, we want to do our part to help those who are still recovering from the storms, and to support those who will be at the vanguard of future relief efforts.

Last October, I sent out a limited call for submissions for Ruin and Resolve, an ebook anthology which Rocket Kapre would put up for sale, donating any profits received to the Philippine National Red Cross.  Seventeen heeded that call, and in the span of less than three months, we’ve managed to compile nineteen stories and five poems, to offer as an incentive for those who want to share their blessings, especially during the Christmas season. On December 28 (fingers crossed) the anthology will go on sale at Smashwords.com, and I’ll need everyone’s help to get the word out. But for now, I’ve set up a book page for Ruin and Resolve (ignore the sample and mediakit portions for now) with the table of contents and the cover image (artwork provided free of charge by the awesome Artspice! Studios) of which I’ve provided a larger version below.

The list of stories/poems and authors is on the book page, but I’m also putting it in this post, after the cut.

Once again guys – December 28, don’t forget!

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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.

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