Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I’m a South-Eastern. Where? From the sunny islands of the Philippines! It’s where the all time Boxing Champion, Manny Paquiao , Ms Universe 2016 Pia Wurtzbach and one-time singing-sensation, Charice Pempengco come from. But not every Filipino has the chance of sharing our talent as they have. I hope I can.
And this is my first attempt to being a novelist. The first novel I had and published via Amazon was ‘The Becoming of the Mystic.’ I decided to write it when I was 25 yrs old. My initial intention was just to get it out of my head. I realized that if I can’t get it out, it would bug me for a long time. I guess, it’s one bothersome mindset of a writer.
But to tell you honestly, I shunned writing for quite some time. When I was studying, I initially auditioned to become a Feature Writer in our school newspaper because my brothers and sister were very well-known writers in the campus. But to my dismay, the Editor-in-Chief decided that I am better off at sketching. So, I became the Official Editorial Cartoonist. By the way, between me and my siblings, I’m the only left-handed. I guess, that did not make the cut.
But what made me do it again? Believe me or not, I had three separate nights of a recurring dream. How can I not be bothered by it? So, viola! I made it into a novel!
It’s one way to be at peace with myself. But then, something had awaken in me. I cannot stop from there. Now, I have to create another one..and hopefully another…Mysterious as it may seem but that first novel of mine, is rather a wake-up call.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
“The Becoming of the Mystic” – It came from a recurring dream that happened three separate nights.
After that, I encountered people, sayings, books, places that eventually transformed the dream into a novel. It took me about a year to create it. I have a day-job and I did it before I go to bed. It was an exhausting fit to fight against your mind and your physical needs.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Some of my inspirations:
*Lewis Carol – The rabbit who led Alice in the hole
*Charlotte Bronte – My favorite classic/all-time female writer
*Jose Rizal – the late national Philippine hero, who rallied through the might of his pen, died with arms tied but faced his gun shots up front. He was only able to write two revolutionary novels: Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) and El Filibusterismo (The Filibuster)
*Hayao Miyazaki (Japanese Anime Director) – not a writer but a director of animated stories. His story-telling captivates one’s soul to reminisce childhood fantasies and bittersweet adult truths
*Richard Paul Evans – my modern day inspirational novelist who wrote The Christmas Box Trilogy. He’s living in Salt Lake City by the way. I wish to meet him one day.
What are you working on now?
For my second attempt in novel-writing, I wish to write a story about a man who tried to save a stranger’s life in expense for his own.
It’s going to be a bit psychological and gloomy but I will put on a paranormal twist on it. It’s not much of a fantasy as my first book but I like how to plot is rolling inside my head. I think I am becoming better at giving more emotions to the characters that in my first book.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
I may be new in the publishing world but when it comes to writing, I think I already cracked my skull open wide to share how I was able to create my first novel:
Keep on writing. One should never stop if this is indeed your passion. This is innate in you and it will bother you if you won’t let those ideas out.
The first half of the battle is won when you are able to express yourself on paper. You just have to worry about the marketing side later on. One step at a time.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I’m a self-publisher. It’s time I learn the marketing strategies on how to reach to a wider audience. But after that, I wish to write more…Do you know why I’m initially doing this?
I could have just simply written my first book for my own pleasure. But let me go back in my self-introduction. I grew-up in a developing country, the Philippines. It may be sunny here but not to most of my country men. I wish to offer the first fruits of my writing to my fellow Filipinos in dire need. I wish not to divulge much about this. But I believe that people must see the motive of the maker somehow. I wish to do this in the long-run.