Joy Flies in the Philippines! A writing workshop

September 21, 2006 at 1:12 am Leave a comment

By Dominique Garde Torres (Nikki)

Here I am, doting mother to a budding writer on one hand, hardworking SCBWI volunteer and ARA on the other hand. That being my life, I had to stay home last weekend because of the illness known as a domestic crisis. In my case, let me just say that I needed to closely review how my house helper is doing and maybe micro-manage things for a day or two. I discovered a few things, and I will not go into details, but you can only imagine the rest of the drama.
In any case, it was rather frustrating to be home, training a new maid on the how and when I want my clothes washed and receiving multiple messages from Beaulah about how the population for our forthcoming workshop has grown. Amazing, but they’re signing up in clusters! And it’s only September! I bet October will bring in even more, and so will November – even up to the last few days before final cutoff. That, we know by experience.

The workshop that I speak of is, of course, “Joy Flies in the Philippines!” a writing workshop with Alice Mclerran. Alice wrote, among others, The Mountain That Loved a Bird, Roxaboxen, The Year of the Ranch and the twin books, Hugs and Kisses. At this workshop, Alice will first speak about herself as writer, will move on to the writing process and finally, a good two hours will be spent talking about the works – and works in progress – of the workshop participants!
Finally, at the end, Alice and my SCBWI partner Beaulah will speak of how the idea of Philippine editions of The Mountain That Loved a Bird came into fruition.
Wheww! Quite a lot for a single day. November 11 – this is the day all this happens. This is also the day I finally take my courage in my hands and submit a work for critiquing. There: I’ve said it in what is a very public blog. No backing out for me now.
For this and many other reasons, I am very, very excited about the writing workshop. The other reasons being that I was in on it from the start of planning onwards. It can get very, very frustrating to miss even one day of working towards the goal of making sure that all is well.
But, as Beaulah says, the Chinese character for crisis is the same as the character for opportunity. On the day I had to stay home to attend to domestic matters, my 11 year old daughter decided to take her courage into her own hands and write her very first poem. With the confidence of the young, she took this poem and showed it to me. Call me a doting mother, but I think the poem was wonderful. I am so very, very proud of her and staying home – while unfortunately missing the registration of a cluster of our workshop attendees – became much, much more than worth it. I will never again be silly enough to regret spending a day at home.
What could possibly warm a mother’s heart more than reading her child’s words? And what better motivation for a mother to attend SCBWI activities and to tend to her own writing, than the courage of her child to put her thoughts on paper? It was a better than excellent young adult’s book that inspired my baby to write this. Working with people who produce such beauty, giving birth to more and more words is beyond enjoyable now.
Before a turn into a maudlin, doting mother, let me invite all of you to attend “Joy Flies in the Philippines!” Slots are still available.
The registration fee is P1,750 if paid by October 16, or P2000 if paid by November 3. There’s a P200 discount as well for current SCBWI members. Either mail a crossed check payable to Beaulah P. Taguiwalo at No. 21 Everlasting Road, Pilar Village, Las Pinas 1750 MM or pay to me, Nikki, or to Beaulah anytime from 4 to 8 pm, every monday at Figaro, 3rd level Greenbelt 3, Makati. Just lets us know! E-mail me at or Beaulah at or call me at 0917-6671267 or Beaulah at 0917-787-4956. 


Joy in the Philippines! A writing workshop with Alice McLerran – photos and info



Entry filed under: Blogroll, children's books, children's books asia, children's writers, children's writers asia, Uncategorized, writing workshops.

Putting the Story in History Booktalk, 2006 Sep 11 : Neither floods…

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