Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Off To Join The Crusade For The Holy Grail

Okay, this has been one hell of a month. Been doing my thing, slowly but painstakingly doing my job, keeping tabs on my trainees and making sure they get their product knowledge up to speed. Then suddenly God ( my boss and dad, notice which noun I used first? ) decided to spring a surprise on me and decided to let loose the trainees next week, a fortnight ahead of schedule! So this past week up to this Saturday I have to cram my schedule, make unavoidable cuts on the program, and hope to hell they'll be at least more than half baked when they return to the outer branches next week. My life, which I used to consider to be half-dead, is now considered non-existant.
But I do have some news. I was browsing through my blog links during lunch time when I stumbled upon something that made my heart stop.
The Carlos Palanca Awards.
I have been ever curious about this awards ever since I read it first on Jessica Zafra's books. So I browsed through the sites, and eventually reading the contest details What surprised me is that open to everybody! And I thought it was a special contest for established writers! Ok, sue me for an ignorant savage, but this is what living in province is like.
The question is: Can I do it? Can I actually write a short story good enough for the supposedly tough judges? Can I actually conjure something up that will make me be satisfied with my skill with words?
Am I worthy?
That is why I heard lots of people refer to the Palanca Awards as the Holy Grail of Philippine Literature ( kinda akin to the Pulitzer ). Well, I haven't backed out from a challenge yet, so I guess I'll go for it. From what I learned from the Neil Gaiman's Contest and playing Warhammer, no matter the odds, as long as you did your best and, especially, having fun, you'll come out a winner still. So if ever I get to finish my shortie, it's because of my love for words.
Nuff' said.
State of Mind: Echoes of Ideas
Song of the Day: #41 by Dave Matthews Band
Now Reading: Men at Arms by Terry Pratchett
Looking for: A weekend off, or perhaps a short vacation

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Last Week in Xiamen, China Part 2: The Lost Pics

For some reason, this pics didn't appear in the last post. So here they are again. Enjoy, hehehe...

At the Opera Garden ... Hmm, where's the beer?

O Lord, where are the fish and chips?

Kung Pow Hamster!

Hmm...the smell of incense in the morning...

My, that's a big piece you have!

State of Mind: Blurry

Song of the day: Malikmata by Up Dharma Down

Now reading: Guards! Guards! by Terry Prachett

Looking for: RPG gamers! Where art thou?!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Last Week In Xiamen, China

I'm back!

And I've been swamped with work ever since I got back from China last week, and add the fact that I'm alone here in the office this past fortnight ( my family went to Hong Kong ), my work pretty much has the difficulty level of Harvest real life ( try building fences, milking the cow, raising chickens and grow crops everyday, each day, all day ) .

Anyways, after going through a dozen of ideas and half finished stories, I scrapped all of them in the final day of submission and made a new one in a little over a couple of hours. So it was that I submitted my short story with little drafting ( mostly grammer check ) and in the nick of time. It was a fun though, to see I was not the only one running to the 4th floor of Rockwell before the store closes at 10:30. I made it in time, passed my submission, and crossed my fingers

I'm not looking for a win though, since I made a couple of requirements wrong ( i.e. page numbers and titles in the bottom of the page ) I'm just hoping my work is appreciated, and aybe just good enough to be in the final compilation. Or even get my work mentioned by Neil Gaiman, now that would make my day, or a year even.

After that, I went to China. Xiamen to be exact, and the people there are almost like the people in Beijing...except more provincial. Still, it was a blast though. Here are some pics that speak for themselves...

Flying Hamster

...and some people don't believe that's me?! Gawd!