March 8, 2007
My blog’s readership seems to be getting wider. My blogstats can attest to this. Blogstats is a cool feature by WordPress where bloggers can check if people bother to drop by their blogs. It also tells from which Web site they come from and/or what they are looking for. Most of my referrers are literary sites where I am linked. Many of my readers are students doing research on literary stuffs.
I started serious writing back in 1999 (when I won grandprize for a one-act play in English). It started this itch to express myself in print. At first, I had no teachers. I simply wrote and wrote, deluding myself that I was a real poet. But then, when I think about it, if I had teachers who would tell me how bad my writing was, I would have stopped as early, because all I had was my ego. I started sending my poems to magazines. Some of them saw print and so I got more excited. I thought I was good. It was later when I learned from national writers workshops that many of my stuffs were crap. Real crap. But then, as they say, ‘May pera sa basura’. Some of those bad poems even won prizes.
I am actually writing this because I want to say that the internet helped me a lot. Since 2000, I have been publishing some of my works electronically. Truth is, there are many readers around here, inside this electronic universe. Many writers too. And of course, this is because there are lots of outlets. Before we only had Web sites, now we have blogs, podcasts and videocasts.
I first became columnist for ABS-CBN’s PinoyCentral.Com Magasin. And I remember, cartoonist Elbert Or, my co-fellow during Ricky Lee’s scriptwriting workshop was also there. It was fun writing for them. Aside from foreign poetry sites, I also got involved in other local sites like Dalityapi Unpoemed, the literary Web site of Pangasinense poet Sonny Villafania. There are lots of Dalityapi writers, enough to form a group. It would really be wise if the contributors would meet from time to time. Another one of my Web sites is OragonRepublic.Com. It is maintained by my friends Fer and Shiela Basbas. I serve as its literary editor, and in 2005, we published a Bikol literary folio. We also sponsored the Writer’s Night right there in Lolo’s Bar. I hope we can still do a repeat of those projects again.
As for my blogging, it was second quarter of last year when the Friedrich Naumann Foundation granted me fellowship for their blogging and podcasting workshop. There we learned from blogging gurus like Manolo Quezon and likewise, we are to spread the word about this phenomenon called blogging, and how it liberates the heart and the intellect.