Friday, March 23, 2018

Cecilia Brainard's Creative Writing Tip No.1 - Sensuous Writing #Video

Cecilia Brainard's Creative Writing Tip No. 1

Write in a Sensuous Way

Fiction Writer Cecilia Brainard shares nuggets of information about creative writing that she has acquired through the writing and editing of 20 books. 

This one-minute video can also be viewed on YouTube:

Stay tuned for more Creative Writing Tips from Cecilia Brainard!

Tags: beginning writing, how to write, fundamentals of writing, creative writing, elements of creative writing, literature, personal essays, Muse, novel, books, workshop #creativewriting

Read also:

  • Creative Writing: The Importance of Sensual Writing
  • Creative Writing: Journal Writing and my Pink Lock and Key Diary
  • Creative Writing: Your Writing Work Space (In My Case, Where My Cats Hang Out)
  • Creative Writing: Two Important Rules
  • Creative Writing: Explosion and Drawing as Writing Exercises
  • How to Write a Novel #1
  • How to Write a Novel #2
  • Thursday, March 22, 2018

    Afternoon with Filipino Authors Cecilia Brainard & Paulino Lim Jr, May 26, 2018, 3 p.m.

    This is an early announcement, but mark your calendars because this is a great opportunity to listen to comprehensive talks and readings by two veteran Filipino and Filipino American writers (Cecilia Brainard & Paulino Lim Jr) discuss their writings and their craft. Join us to learn more about Philippine and Philippine-American Literature!


    Sat. May 26, 2018, 3 p.m.
    Los Angeles Public Library, Meeting Room A
    630 W. 5th Street, LA, CA 90071

    Cecilia Brainard and Paulino Lim will talk about their experiences as Filipino authors in America. They will also read from their works, and there will be book signing. The International Languages Department of the Los Angeles Public Library hosts this free literary event.

    BIOS of Speakers:

    Cecilia Manguerra Brainard is the award-winning author and editor of twenty books, including the novels: When the Rainbow Goddess Wept, The Newspaper Widow, Magdalen; and short story collections: Vigan and Other Stories, Acapulco at Sunset and Other Stories, Woman With Horns and Other Stories.
    Cecilia co-edited six other books and she co-authored a novel, Angelica's Daughters, a Dugtungan Novel.
    Her work has been translated into Finnish and Turkish; and many of her stories and articles have been widely anthologized.
    Cecilia has received several awards including a California Arts Council Fellowship in Fiction, a Brody Arts Fund Award, the Outstanding Individual Award from her birth city, Cebu, Philippines, and others.
    She has lectured and performed in worldwide literary arts organizations and universities, including UCLA, USC, University of Connecticut, University of the Philippines, PEN, Beyond Baroque, Shakespeare & Company in Paris, and many others.
    Aside from writing and editing, Cecilia publishes fine literature under the imprint of Philippine American Literary House (

    Paulino Lim Jr. is a professor emeritus of English at California of State University, Long Beach. He is a recipient of the 2016 Presidential Award for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas—for his fiction and scholarly essays that are constructive criticisms of the political, social, and religious problems in the Philippines. Also in 2016, his alma mater, the University of Santo Tomas, conferred upon him a lifetime achievement honor—the Parangal Hagbong Award—for significant contributions to Philippine literature. He is the author of a scholarly monograph on Byron, dramas, three anthologies, a quartet of political novels, and the novel Death of the English Zen Professor. His latest work is soon-to-be released by Ateneo de Naga University Press, Spots of Time: Memoir of a Mind.

    Cecilia Brainard Interview by Alton Melvar Dapanas in Southern Philippine Journal

    Here is an interview of me by Alton Melvar Dapanas. It appeared in the Payag Habagatan: New Writings from the South on March 22, 2018. Payag Habagatan is an inaugural literary journal for emerging voices in poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction or essay, and drama in Cebuano, Chavacano, English, Hiligaynon, Meranao, Surigaonon, and Waray from Southern Philippines. Please visit their wonderful site:

    Many thanks Alton!

    Southern Authors No. 13 — Cecilia Manguerra Brainard on the Woman-Novelist and the Filipino-American Literature

    Featured Authors by Alton Melvar Dapanas | 

    Monday, March 19, 2018

    Cecilia Brainard Literary Readings from her Novels on YouTube

    Cecilia Brainard did some readings from my three novels, which can be viewed on YouTube.  Here are the links:

    Cecilia Brainard Reads from When the Rainbow Goddess Wept - (Chapter, "Death of an Epic Singer")

    Cecilia Brainard Reads from her novel, Magdalena - (Chapter "Magdalena's Monologue")

    Cecilia Brainard Reads from The Newspaper Widow:

    Tags: Philippines, literature, novels, Cebu, author, book, Filipina, Pinoy, writer, #goodreads #librarygirl #librarians #video

    Read also
    When the Rainbow Goddess Wept - Book Reviews and Papers
    Book Review of Magdalena by Philippine Graphic 
    Book Review of The Newspaper Widow by Foreword Reviews

    Sunday, March 18, 2018

    Pinay Gathering 2018 at Philippine Expressions Bookshop #Literature

    L-r: Linda Nietes, Tessie Jayme, Angela Narcisso Torres, Prosy Delacruz, Irene Suico-Soriano, Marianne Villanueva, and Cecilia Brainard

    The 2018 Pinay Gathering at Philippine Expressions Bookshop featured Filipina writers and poets (in no particular order): Prosy Delacruz, Marianne Villanueva, Irene Suico-Soriano, Angela Narcisso-Torres, Tessie Jayme, and Cecilia Brainard.

    Thursday, March 15, 2018

    Voice from the Past - Filipino Author Bienvenido N. Santos

    I was happy to stumble upon this handwritten note from Filipino writer Bienvenido N. Santos to me dated May 22, 1988. Ben Santos was very supportive of my literary efforts. He was the one who introduced me to Gloria Rodriquez, publishing manager of New Day at the time, and Tita Glo published my first book, Woman With Horns and Other Stories.

    Ben's note says: 

    May 22, 1988, 
    Dear Cecilia, Thank you for your autographed copy of your book. Now I can read the complete collection.
    As a regular commuter between the RP and the U.S. every six months each year since 1981, promoting my books and teaching, I know what you mean when you say "I am tired." Consider, too, that I'm a 77-year old man.

    But I keep busy, which to me is a way of survival. Manila is an exciting town to visit. I was born there, but the place has changed, the people, too.

    I missed you at the poetry reading in which I participated in L.A. April 9. I asked Linda where you were and she told me. Sorry, our paths didn't cross.

    I'm leaving at the end of the month for the Wash/DC area to speak and to receive my work in progress. Wish me well as I do you. Thank you again. 
    Regards to Lauren. 
    Ben Santos.

    From Wikipedia, here is a short bio of Ben: Bienvenido N. Santos (March 22, 1911 – January 7, 1996) was a Filipino-American fiction, poetry and nonfiction writer. He was born and raised in Tondo, Manila. His family roots are originally from Lubao, Pampanga, Philippines. He lived in the United States for many years where he is widely credited as a pioneering Asian-American writer.

    l-r: Linda Nietes, P.C. Morantte, Cecilia Brainard, Bienvenido N. Santos

     #Philippine #literature #pinoylit #FilAm #novel #writer #Filipino #author #goodreads #librarians'

    Read also

    Tuesday, March 13, 2018

    Fiction Short Story "Friday Evening at the Seashore" by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard

    I'm sharing a story that's part of my first short story collection, Woman With Horns and Other Stories.  The collection is available in Kindle form ~ Cecilia Manguerra Brainard

     by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard
                Padre Zobel locked the rectory and, leaving the center of town, headed toward the seashore. He was a young Spaniard from the coastal village of Mojacar and he felt a special bond with the sea. It made his soul echo; it was home.

    Monday, March 12, 2018

    The Narrative Voice by Cecilia Brainard at Cebu Normal University, January 26, 2018

    I gave this talk last January 26, 2018 at the Cebu Normal University. ~ Cecilia Manguerra Brainard 


    The Narrative Voice:
    Talk Given at the Seminar-Workshop, Cebu Normal University, January 26, 2018
    By Cecilia Manguerra Brainard
    “Voice” was one of the elements of creative writing that I had to understand before I could make serious headway with my writing.  I was confronted with the issue of “voice” when I was a writing student at the Writers’ Program of UCLA Extension. I had taken Fiction Writing I, and got an A for that class, after which I signed up for Fiction Writing II. 

    Sunday, March 11, 2018

    What to Do with Fake Facebook Accounts #social media #hackers

    What to Do with Fake Facebook Accounts

    Recently I've had to deal with fake Facebook Accounts in my name.  The experience of seeing someone else using your identity is disconcerting, but this has happened to me before and I knew what to do.

    Before getting into how to remove the fake account, let me tell you how to find these fake Facebook Accounts. It's very simple: search your own name in Facebook.  There you will find the impersonators (if there are any). Sometimes the account will not have a profile picture; sometimes, the account will have your picture; sometimes, the account will have your name but some other picture.

    What you need to do is go to the fake account - click on the name, and you will be brought to the profile page.  On the big picture above, on the righthand side, you will see: "Following, Message, then three dots. Click on the three dots. You will find a menu, choose "Report." Next, click "Report this profile."  Continue. You will be asked "What's going on?" Click  "They're pretending to be me or someone I know." Continue. Choose "me."

    Right away, you will receive notice that the account is being reviewed.  Later on, you will receive a message that the account has been removed.

    As a precaution, I warn my FB friends about the fake account with the screen shot of the fake account. I advise them to check for any fake accounts with their names and teach them what to do if they should discover impersonators.

    It's important for all of us to be vigilant and do our part to remove fake Facebook Accounts. Hackers, even possibly Russians using social media for propaganda, may be responsible for these fake accounts. For further information, please read the articles below, and note that fake accounts seem to be used for political purposes.

    Read also
    Facebook admits up to 270m users are fake and duplicate accounts
    Fake Russian Facebook Accounts Bought $100,000 in Political Ads
    Facebook says it took down "tens of thousands of fake accounts before German Election

    Tags: social media, #facebook #fakeaccounts #hackers #Russian

    #Filipina Women Authors and Writing by Prosy Abarquez Delacruz, J.D.

    Prosy Delacruz, one of the women writers featured in the forthcoming Pinay Gathering at Philippine Expressions Bookshop, wrote the following piece, which was published in Asian Journal.  The Pinay Gathering will be on Saturday, March 17, 2018, 3-6 p.m. at 479 W. Sixth Street, Suite 105, San Pedro, CA 90731, RSVP 1-310-514-9139

    Women authors: Writing is the intersectional expression of their multidimensional stories
    By Prosy Abarquez Delacruz, J.D.
    Published: March 10, 2018 

    Monday, March 5, 2018

    INVITATION: Pinay Gathering, Philippine Expressions Bookshop, 3/17/18 3 p.m.

    Philippine Expressions Bookshop
    Invites you to a
    Pinay Gathering
    to honor Filipina American authors in celebration of Women's History Month

    Saturday, March 17, 2018 from 3-6 p.m.
    479 W. Sixth Street #105
    San Pedro, CA 90731
    RSVP 1-310-514-9139

    Books Talks & Signings with: 
    Cecilia Manguerra Brainard (The Newspaper Widow), 
    Prosy Abarquez-DelaCruz (Even the Rainbow has a Body, Distinct Artistic Legacies), 
    Marianne Villanueva (Mayor of the Roses),  
    Irene Suico- Soriano (Primates from an Archipelago: Poems), 
    Angela Narcisso-Torres (Blood Orange: Poems), and
    Tessie Jayme (Black Clouds in Manila)

    JOIN US!

    Tags: #Philippines #Filipino #Filipina #Pinoy #pinay #books #literature #goodreads #literaryreading #event #openmic #librarygirl #Filam #writers #authors #poets

    Read also:

    Sunday, March 4, 2018

    Philippines Graphic Book Review of MAGDALENA, novel by Cecilia Brainard

    The Tremendous Power of Secrets: Cecilia Manguerra Brainard's 'Magdalena'

    Review by Alma Anonas-Carpio, Literary Editor and Associate Editor of Philippines Graphic
    The first call of a novel is to tell a story. Not just any story, mind you, but the story only the author of the novel can tell in his or her unique way. What the reader is led to expect is a bit of an escape into another time and world, perhaps a tentative acquaintance with the characters who populate the text.

    Saturday, February 24, 2018

    Selfie: Journey of a Woman Writer, by Cecilia Brainard at Miriam College QC, Philippines

    Dear Readers,
    I've been down with the flu and have not been able to blog.  I've been able to post in Facebook and Instagram.

    Here's a Selfie taken after the talk I gave at Miriam College, Quezon City, Philippines, last  February 5, 2018. Titled "Journey of a Woman Writer," my PowerPoint Presentation, talk, and discussion was attended by some 400 students and teachers.

    Now that I'm better I promise to get back to blogging.  Please stay tuned!


    Thursday, February 15, 2018

    Cecilia Brainard's Literary Events for 2018 - Update

    Cecilia Brainard's Upcoming Literary Events 2018

    Saturday, March 17, Afternoon, Pinay Gathering, Philippine Expressions, 479 W. 6th St., San Pedro, CA, tel: 1-310-514-9139

    Thursday, April 26, 8 p.m. – Featured Performer, Paris Lit Up Open Mic Reading, Culture Rapide, 103 Rue Julien Lacroix, 75020 Paris, France

    Saturday, May 26, 3 p.m. – Central Library, Los Angeles Public Library, LA, CA, tel: 1-213-228-7128


    I'm updating my Announcement of Literary Events for 2018. Note that in March 17, St. Patrick's Day, I will participate in Philippine Expressions "Pinay Gathering", along with other Filipina writers. 

    The Paris Event is on in April 26 at 8 p.m. I've attended the Open Mic Reading at the Culture Rapide in Paris, and it's a great literary event. Before the reading, there is an open bar and some food to those who wish to eat and imbibe. The reading itself is in the bar - yes, there is a bar, but everyone is well-behaved -- and there is a small stage, and small tables and chairs, and lots of writers and poets and people who love literature. People are supportive and there is great energy all around. I've happy they're featuring me this April. 

    In May, I'm on with writer-novelist Paulino Lim at the Los Angeles Public Library's Central Library on May 26 at 3 p.m. 

    Join me - us!!!

    Tags: #literature #Paris #Philippines #CeciliaBrainard #novelist #writer #goodreads #librarygirl #Pinay #PhilippineLiterature #FilAm #Cebu

    Read also:

    Cecilia Brainard -- Journey of a Woman Writer by Maribel Paraz

    l-r: Edna Del Rosario, Dr. Loreta Castro, Cecilia Brainard, Maribel Paraz

    Cecilia Brainard - Journey of a Woman Writer
    by Maribel Alvarez Paraz

    Cecilia Manguerra Brainard is celebrating her Maryknoll class' Golden Jubilee this year. She graduated from Maryknoll College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Arts in 1968. She received Maryknoll College's Amazing Alumni Achiever Award in 2003. 

    Her talk on February 5, 2018 was her special gift to Maryknoll/Miriam College, her way of giving back to her Alma Mater.

    Tuesday, February 6, 2018

    Bitcoin - The Emperor Has No Clothes by Manny Gonzalez, Guest Blogger

     Image result for bitcoin picture
    Bitcoin – The Emperor Has No Clothes
    By Manny Gonzalez, Resident Shareholder, Plantation Bay Resort & Spa

    My Guest Blogger Manny Gonzalez brings a unique multi-disciplinary perspective to this issue – public policy, financial analysis, and technology. As an officer of the World Bank, Mr. Gonzalez advised governments and financial institutions; as an investment banker he designed financial derivatives and assessed IPOs. He has als been awarded 5 US Patents related to gathering information on the internet. He is now a successful entrepreneur. MBA Columbia University, Robert J. McKim, Jr., Fellow, and Roswell McCrea Award winner.
    This article first appeared in the Philippine Star. It is reprinted with the author's permission.

     Thinking of plunging into Bitcoins? Read this first.

    Dazzled by the technology, some claim Bitcoins are a new kind of money. No, they aren’t, and I’ll explain why. Unlike some parties who should know better, I was not asleep during my Money & Banking classes.

    Monday, January 29, 2018

    A Zulueta Cat Story by Cecilia Brainard

    A Zulueta Cat Story
    By Cecilia Brainard

    One stormy night several years ago, I heard a kitten meowing and shrieking nonstop. In the morning, Vidal, the chief jefe here in my Zulueta place, said a mother cat and her four kittens had been dumped on the sidewalk by neighbors. The mother cat went off to find a home, and then she proceeded to transport her kittens, except for the one who cried all night.

    In the morning, when we inspected the kitten (with heavy rain crashing down on us), we saw that its eyes were still closed. It was a newborn.

    We covered the kitten with a box to try to keep it dry, and we waited for its mom to come back for him.

    By late afternoon the kitten was still meowing away in great distress. We  decided the mother cat would not return for the kitten and so we took it in. Vidal fed it milk via eyedropper, and we brought it to the vet for shots. Vidal took excellent care of the kitten and Milagro grew plump and handsome.

     So plump and handsome that one day months later someone stole him.  

    We were heartbroken, Vidal especially.

    Never again, I declared, never will I get emotionally involved with a rescue animal like that.

    But yesterday a scrawny little kitten crawled into our garage. He looked half-dead. We had to take care of him. We are taking care of him.

    So, here we go again, cleaning the kitten, feeding him, and helping him. His eyes are open and he can walk around. He even has the good sense to poop and pee in the garden soil.

     Since the kitten found us and needs help, we will do so but I hope this little guy does better than the other rescue kitten.

    Sunday, January 28, 2018

    Magnificence -- Short Story by Estrella D. Alfon - Writer from Cebu, Philippines

    Short Story by

    There was nothing to fear, for the man was always so gentle, so kind. At night when the little girl and her brother were bathed in the light of the big shaded bulb that hung over the big study table in the downstairs hall, the man would knock gently on the door, and come in. he would stand for a while just beyond the pool of light, his feet in the circle of illumination, the rest of him in shadow. The little girl and her brother would look up at him where they sat at the big table, their eyes bright in the bright light, and watch him come fully into the light, but his voice soft, his manner slow. He would smell very faintly of sweat and pomade, but the children didn’t mind although they did notice, for they waited for him every evening as they sat at their lessons like this. He’d throw his visored cap on the table, and it would fall down with a soft plop, then he’d nod his head to say one was right, or shake it to say one was wrong.

    Saturday, January 27, 2018

    Melancholia in Cebu by Cecilia Brainard

    Where did that melancholia come from, that grief that swept over me as I moved around Cebu yesterday?

    I found myself remembering tinseled memories of this place where I was born and raised -- my first home. It seemed smaller then, and simpler, and more "homey" in the way we visited one another throughout the day to eat together, share tidbits heard here and there, weave the fabric that bound us together in this small seaside place.

    Now, while Cebu remains small, it's crowded and busy and people rush here and there as they do in Manila and big cities. Most of the people are strangers to me. Even the idioms they use and their mannerisms are unfamiliar to me. And worse of all, many of the people I once knew are gone - moved to other places, to Manila or Canada or Europe or America as I did.  Some have died.

    Friday, January 26, 2018

    Seminar Workshop at Cebu Normal University with Cecilia Brainard

    Here are some pictures taken at the whole-day Workshop held at the Cebu Normal University and conducted by Cecilia Brainard (Jan. 26, 2018). Thanks to Dr. Reynaldo Caturza and other organizers. 

    I did a PowerPoint Presentation about my roots as a writer. Afterwards, I talked about the Narrative Voice and also covered the elements of creative writing.  The participants had several writing exercises with sharing.  We had a very productive and joyful day.

    The University presented me with a Certificate of Appreciation.  I gave them some of my books for their library.

    There are more pictures, but internet is slow, so check back.

    Stay tuned for more pictures.  In fact, you can see most of them in Facebook and Instagram.

    Sunday, January 21, 2018

    PAAWWW - Pacific Asian American Women Writers West - Reading and Panel Discussion

    Seated l-r: Jude Narita, Joyce Nako, Amy Uyematsu; Standing l-r" Diane Ujiiye, Miya Iwataki, Cecilia Brainard

    Timothy Toyama organized a reading and panel discussion of PAAWWW (Pacific Asian American Women Writers West), a group I belonged to back in the late 1980s.

    It was a dynamic group of talented Asian American women who were poets, fiction writers, script writers, actresses, producers, and directors, including: Emma Gee, Momoko Iko, Jude Narita, Joyce Nako, Naomi Hirahara, Amy Uyematsu, Akemi Kikumura, Velina Hasu Houston, Miya Iwataki, Diane Ujiiye, June Chim, Chungmi Kim, and others. Many of these women went on to make significant contribution in their communities and the arts.

    Tuesday, January 16, 2018

    Early Writings of Cecilia Brainard - Diary of Cecilia #literature #Philippines

    These are the journal notebooks I wrote in when I was in high school and college (and beyond). I edited them into the book, Cecilia's Diary: 1962-1969 (Anvil 2003). I've included a news account from Philippine Star about the book - read below.

    Catholic school girl’s diary is vivid account (Philippine Star, May 19, 2003)

     Anvil Publishing releases another book by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard, internationally celebrated and award-winning author and editor.  Cecilia’s Diary: 1962-1969, is a faithful record of Brainard’s days as a young colegiala.  It is refreshing and funny, replete with references to a religious upbringing and a privileged lifestyle.  Reading a diary may seem like voyeurism, but the inner thoughts of Catholic girls make for an interesting study on teen angst.

    On dating, the young Cecilia writes “Jun said I’m much prettier than Priscilla and more intelligent too. I asked him what he thought of a girl who’s intelligent but not pretty.  He said it takes an intelligent boy to fall for an intelligent girl.

    “I think that I’ll marry (if I marry) an engineer or businessman.  …It would be perfect, if I become an industrial engineer. …Help me, dear God. I’ll always remember the small but important things Sister Miguela told us: always be neat, learn how to cook, save money, how to work, how to sacrifice.  Real love is self-sacrifice.  I wonder if I shall learn to sacrifice to someone.

    “Oh dear God, whoever, wherever my future husband is, please protect him. Keep him pure, holy, and good. May we meet each other properly, and may everything turn out fine. Help him, dear God.  Thank you.”

    Cecilia’s Diary inspires a comparison of the different generations of Filipinas.  Regardless of time, the book is a vivid account of growing up, to which all young Filipinas can identify with.  It can also serve as a valuable reference to high school students who are keen on starting their own journals.
    As Cecilia aptly puts it “Age is a state of mind.  The more one thinks of what was, the older he is.  The young are the ones who think of tomorrow.”

    Copies of Cecilia’s Diary from are available at all National Bookstore and Powerbooks branches.   A special student edition is available for adoption in the high school level.  For inquiries, please call Anvil Publishing at 6719235/6711899.

    Cecilia's Diary is available in Kindle - click on link

    Tags: #goodreads #Philippineliterature #philippines #librarygirl #pinoyreads #fiction #shortstories #Cebu #Manila 
     Read also:

    Wednesday, January 10, 2018

    Cecilia Brainard Upcoming Literary Events, #Reading, #Writing Workshops

    Cecilia Manguerra Brainard's Upcoming Literary Events - 2018:

    Saturday, January 20, 2-4 p.m. -  "Afternoon of PAAWWW (Pacific Asian American Women Writers-West)"
    Nisei Veteran's Memorial Hall, 1964 W. 162nd Street, Gardena, CA 90247
    1-310-324-6611; info

    Friday, January 26, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. - "The Narrative Voice: A Seminar-Workshop" at the Cebu Normal University, Tandang Sora Hall, Cebu, Philippines

    Monday, February 5, 1-2 p.m. - "Journey as a Woman Writer" Little Theater, Miriam College, Quezon City, Philippines

    Thursday, April 26,  8 p.m.- Featured Performer of Paris Lit Up Open Mic Reading, Culture Rapide, 103 rue Julien Lacroix, 75020 Paris, France

    I'll be posting future literary events in this page, so check back. Thank you.

    Tags:  #openmic #literature #Philippines #writer #novelist #Cebu #Paris #California #SpokenWord #author

    Read also