Reading for the Day: Alex G. Paman on Philippine Literature of the Fantastic

Self still bleary-eyed from the trip to San Luis Obispo!  But she is at least upright and ambulatory (that is, when not reading a newspaper or typing on zee laptop)

Here, dear blog readers, is an extremely interesting article written by Alex G. Paman for the May 2009 issue of Filipinas Magazine.

Fantasy and horror movies have always been staples in Filipino popular cinema.  A quick glance through the DVD rental section of any Fil-Am grocery reveals a wide variety of the most current ghost stories, martial-arts superheroes and native fables fresh off their initial broadcast in the Philippines.  These uniquely Pinoy films, however, are often low budget and quickly made, imitations of current trends that lean more toward showcasing attractive leading stars than producing quality native fiction.

But away from the American superhero parodies, recycled fairy tales and derivative Japanese horror imitations, there is a growing literary movement in the Philippines that seeks to dispel the camp of pop Pinoy sci-fi.  Composed of award-winning journalists, writers, artists, and editors, these masters of science fiction, fantasy, and horror are now endeavoring to make a statement within mainstream literature, taking their place among the world’s top storytelling traditions to express the Filipino imagination.

“Fantasy and horror are deeply rooted in our oral traditions,” says award-winning author Dean Alfar who, along with his wife Nikki, co-edit and publish the annual Philippine Speculative Fiction anthology.  “We are storytellers and listeners.  It’s in our blood.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

Most Fan-TA-bulous Quote of the Day

Just back from heavenly San Luis Obispo, picked up dogs from Peninsula Pet Resort, (where they got treated to the likes of “home-made chicken-flavored frozen yogurt treats”), and discovered that the plants were still alive.

Also, there was a huge box from UPS in full view of the street, and no one had apparently disturbed it.

Also, there was this message in self’s “In” box, from the editors at White Whale Review:

We are very pleased to report, at long last, the second installment of our fair journal, featuring the likes of, well, you. For that reason, and for many others besides, we’re sure you’ll agree when we say things like “quality” and “two thumbs up” and, knowing us, probably something off-color but nautically appropriate.

So, check it out, dear blog readers. Pretty please. The setting is Dumaguete.

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