Sunday, January 31, 2010

Why Am I Smiling?

I love being that creative guy! And this weekend, I'm going to be busting out creativity.

Friday, February 5th
I'll be curating another awesome Promising Reading this Friday at 7:30pm. Click here for more information.

Saturday, February 6th
I'll be reading/performing at Taper Hall, Room 214 at USC at 6pm, $10 writing workshop at 7pm. Check out the Facebook invitation here

Sunday, February 7th
Check me out at the 10th anniversary of Smartgals. Check out there website here.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Time Travel With Audrey Niffenegger

Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry, came by Skylight and I just had to interview her!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Tracking the Story

Tracking has become my friend. Years ago, I became obsessed with how fast my stories got to its intended location when I started looking for agents. I NEED TO KNOW that my stories got there. I sent a piece off to my agent for his review.

Detailed Results:
Delivered, January 23, 2010, 9:46 am, NEW YORK, NY 10010
Arrival at Post Office, January 23, 2010, 9:03 am, NEW YORK, NY 10010
Processed through Sort Facility, January 21, 2010, 5:35 pm, LOS ANGELES, CA 90052
Acceptance, January 21, 2010, 1:42 pm, LOS ANGELES, CA 90017

So my agent got my story. What's taking him so long to get back to me?!?!?!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Long and Short of It

In trying to complete my collection of short stories, I was finishing up what I thought was a short short story. In my mind's eyes, a little story called Pinky and the Roaches was supposed to be no longer than eight pages. I thought it was something that I could whip up. In writing a character sketch of Pinky, I'm discovering this brand new world about her and where she comes from. I'm a novelist, so going off on tangents sometimes happens. I'm trying to tame it.

In an earlier sketch of Pinky, I made her out as an upper middle class Filipina from Manila. After thinking about my writing, I realized that I have a lot of Filipina characters from an upper middle class background. I decided to make her poverty stricken from a provincial part of the Philippines. The results have been...interesting.

Monday, January 11, 2010


My sister, the sweetest woman in the world, threw me a surprise birthday party. And I was truly surprised! I needed the bump. I'd been trying to finish a manuscript and I can get down about it. I'm still hoping to get it off to my agent this month.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Up and Writing

It's 4am on a Saturday morning. Why am I up this early? Because I have to write. I'm trying to finish a book. With work, social and familial obligations tugging at me, I got to get to those pages when I can. 4am it is. This is the writing life.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Promising on 2/5/10 at 7:30pm

The Promising Series is a reading series that celebrates Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender writers. The first Promising of the year will launch Fifty Gay and Lesbian Books You Must Read, an anthology that “contains fifty succinct essays by critics, public figures, and authors. They illuminate works by fifty men and women that everybody should read.”

In explaining the book, Editor Richard Canning wrote in his introduction, “Fifty diverse authors have each taken a single work of literature and written a brief account of how and why they read it (and, usually, repeatedly reread it), and why others (of any and all sexualities) should do so.”

Some of the writers in the book include Maureen Duffy writing about Sappho’s poems, Christopher Bram writing about Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice, Jonathan Franzen on James Purdy’s Eustace Chisholm and the Works, and Tani Katan on Audre Lorde’s The Cancer Journals.

On February 5th, writers who will read their contributions to Fifty Gay and Lesbian Books You Must Read will be Felice Picano, Fenton Johnson, Matias Viegener and Promising Series Curator Noel Alumit. The reading begins at 7:30pm.

Felice Picano is the author of 19 books, including the international bestsellers The Book of Lies and Like People in History. He also wrote the acclaimed literary memoirs Ambidextrous, Men Who Loved Me, and A House on the Ocean, A House on the Bay. He has been nominated for a PEN/Hemingway, several Lambda Literary Awards, and is a recipient of the Ferro-Grumley award for fiction.

Fenton Johnson is the author of two novels, Crossing the River and Scissors, Paper, Rock as well as Geography of the Heart: A Memoir. His most recent book is Keeping Faith: A Skeptic's Journey among Christian and Buddhist Monks. Johnson has served as a regular contributor to Harper's Magazine and the New York Times Magazine. His stories and essays have appeared in many literary quarterlies and have received numerous awards, among them a James Michener Fellowship from the Iowa Writers Workshop and National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Fellowships in both fiction and creative nonfiction.

Matias Viegener is a Los Angeles based writer, artist and critic who works alone and collaboratively in writing, video, installation and performance art. He has shown solo work or performed at The Whitney Museum, The Kitchen and The Drawing Center in New York, LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions), New Langton Arts in San Francisco, Beyond Baroque, Machine Project, the L.A. Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), The Silver Lake Film Festival, and the La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art.

The Promising Series will take place on Friday, February 5 at 7:30pm. Skylight Bookstore, 1818 North Vermont, Los Angeles, CA 90029, (323) 660-1175.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Two Thousand and Ten

I spent the end of 2009 on a family trip to Puerto Vallarta. I was there from Christmas to New Years and had an incredible time. I snorkeled, meditated as I looked at all the pretty fish swimming below me. I went zip-lining (where they hook you up to a cable and let you loose) through the jungles of Mexico (specifically where they filmed the movie Predator).

I spent some quality time with my family, eating at good restaurants and shopping. It quickly dawned on me how the global economy is hitting everyone. If the US is having a bad time, imagine what Mexico is eperiencing. Vendors were anxious to sell. I know at tourist traps, vendors always want to sell but it felt more intense. Some were begging for me to buy something.

Regardless, I love Mexico. I think I was Mexican in a past life. I have a true fondness for the country. I was mistaken for Mexican by tourists. Mexicans wanted to know if I was Chinese or Korean.

I woke up on January First, my birthday, and did my annual cartwheel. Being able to do a carwheel at 42 means I've still got some vigor in me. Of course, now I have to stretch before I do one. It was extra special because I did it while waves crashed on the beach.

So here we are in a new decade and I'm curious to know what it will bring. Happy New Year to all. I hope this year is better than the last!