My Life as a Writer: Its Ups and Downs

Ever since I was a kid, I seldom find my mind inside my head. I would always find it floating somewhere else: in the past, the future, in the present but at some other places or in some parallel universes where I am a prince, a warrior, a savior, or whatever—but of course I have super powers. See? I have been insane for the last twenty-two years of my life. But this insanity has given me more positive results than negative backwashes. This insanity has made me write several and different ideas I have, including this one you are reading right now.

I started writing when I was in third grade. Yeah. Around eight or nine years old. Back then, I wrote poems in Filipino. Yeah, FILIPINO. I couldn’t even remember what they were exactly, but I know they were about my dreams and wishes. My sisters and mother praised my work, thus, the very reason I continued writing. Fortunately, I lost copies of them, otherwise I would spend so much time rereading and laughing at them. When I reached first year high school, I have this girl that I really liked and I also wrote poems for her. Uhhhmmm . . .  Actually, I guess, I might say there were two of them (LOL). But they never seemed to have appreciated my works, so I stopped writing for them.

Second year high school came, and there was this RMM person that I became so obsessed with (that whenever I remember it now, I would just laugh at my own stupidity, and to those who know RMM please do not drop any names: you have embarrassed already me in front of the whole class by singing a certain song). So there it goes, RMM became the subject of my poems for almost three months. Most were lyric poems expressing my admiration and others were narrative telling how we first met. (Okay, those who know RMM, please don’t rub this through my nose, I know I was stupid.)

It was also the time when I wrote my first fiction: a novel I called GiYou: Gifted Youngsters.  I wrote it in a notebook and used another piece when the first one is full. The story was very generic though, so I couldn’t say it was really my own idea. It was like X-men and Power Ranger combined (minus the tights). The story centered on the lives of thirty gifted youngsters, who were actually me and my classmates (SSTC I-Newton 2002) and the man who gathered to train us (yeah, the character model is Sir Ronelo Aponte, and I can still remember his name). What I am proud about this work is that I was able to create character profiles of about 50 different people. I was able to finish twenty-four chapters of it and planned to end it at thirty by killing most of the protagonist (though, I killed Gilbert Fernando’s character half-way through chapter 18 because I somehow hated him at that moment, sorry, Gilbert) and I went to Altavas, Aklan, to visit my close friends Anong Al and Toto Jeffrey. When I came back from my short vacation, I found pieces of paper lying across our front yard, and I immediately recognized my own handwriting! I was so distressed! My nephews and nieces had turned my novel into a heap of confetti! I wanted to kill all of them for invading my bedroom and playing with my stuff.

After that incident, I decided to write a new novel; this time, it was from the side of reality. I called it Trails of Felicity. I used the same characters from GiYou minus their superpowers. The story tells the daily life of Keioh Monroe (which was basically me) and his brother Jeyffer, and his friends, the TF-9 (Fu Miyogi, Xanrya Reynalde, Chelsea Herrera, Stella Collins, Dylan Shaft, Aleiqzandra Zoaldic, Naïve Lockharts, and Shaxin Drincer, if you guys are reading this, [lemme tell you I miss you] and please identify yourself). New characters developed as the story progressed, and I finished it when I was in third year high school. Every now and then, I would read it at home and laugh at my own grammar and spelling errors.

Third year high school. We were told to write our own short story for our English class. It was then the first time I wrote one. I called my work Journal of a Teenager (which later, when I was in first year college, I edited it and changed the title to M’s Journal – Scribbled Emotions). It was a tragic story about life, regret, having to forgive someone and realizing what you have when you lost it. After that, I continued writing several short stories and collected them in a “book” I called Alter-Egos. I planned to write fourteen short stories about fourteen different people whose lives were, in one way or another, intertwined. The first story of the collection was “Journal of a Teenager” followed by “The Alchemist and the Warrior,” The Main Switch,” “Teardrop Jewel Scarab” and “The Paper Cranes.” I was half-way writing the fifth story (“The Paper Cranes”) when I lost that “book.” I somehow blamed those people who used to borrow that and read my works (especially Larisa Baculinao, but don’t worry, Aries, I no longer blame you). I still have the ideas intact in my mind, but I feel so lazy to rewrite them. After that, I decided to write another fantasy novel, which was supposed to be the sequel of my first one, I called it GiYou: Tragedy Night. This time, I narrowed my character to ten instead of thirty. I finished writing up to the seventh chapter when I lost the drive to write since I never finished the first series. So I gave that up. No regrets even now. I also started accepting orders from my classmates to write their essay, and they paid me a fixed amount depending on the topic they want me to write.

Fourth year high school. I focused on my poetry, mostly lyrical to the girls I was too attracted to. Yes, girls. And I will be brave to drop their names here: Mae Anne Apruebo and Kristyl Angelica Noval. Karen Joyce Artates, my closest friend suffered so much of having to read all my works. Almost every day. I also shared those poems with Anong Al, for he too is very interested in poetry. I stopped writing poetry when I got hooked to writing a new genre of novel: thriller-fantasy which I called De Ja Vu Tragedy. I don’t feel like giving the summary of it here, if you wanna know I can give you a copy. After that, I wrote another one called The Hex of Black Troy. Both novels featured Keioh Monroe and his family and friends still. I even researched and learned how to read and write in runes to make Black Troy more realistic. Eventually, I did not finish the novel before graduation, so I stopped writing because no one will read it any longer.

When I was in the first year of my university life, I did not write so much. It was the time when my father died, so I guess I lost the drive to write anything. Second year came, and I wrote poetry again. Mostly about pain and death and longing about my father’s death and how the Order of Apollo (OrOA) was disbanded, or more precisely how I left the order (though I was the one who named it). I think, only Frances Lyna Lynn Buendia can relate to my thoughts right now. I also made several poems for the best Kuya I ever had, Kuya Leigh! We even wrote a poem answering one another’s thoughts. I was then a Smallish Bear. And I am still, only that I am no longer a cub, but still a Smallish Bear.

Third year college proved to be one of the most productive years of my writing. My classmate Ma. Roma Angela Miranda placed so many orders of essays and other paper works we had to submit as part of the course requirement. I wrote her essays, homework, and other requirements, and I got paid in return. I also continued writing poetry about whatever topic I could think of. This continued until I was in our fourth year college. The best writing I have done was with Cecile Angelie Cabaluna, it was when we murdered Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” How will I ever forget that?

Presently, I am trying to finish a fantasy novel series called Twilight of the Gods, which I started writing a few years ago. There was another novel series that I started and gave up completely—Saving Mysteria. I am still writing short stories in fashion of Oscar Wilde and O. Henry’s style. My novels are greatly influenced by K. A. Applegate, Rick Riordan, James Frey and Jobie Hughes, Virginia Wolff, Katherine Paterson, and many others. My poetry is fashioned from the style of Willam Cullen Bryant, William Ernest Henley, Robert Frost, Robert and Elizabeth Browning, Pablo Neruda and many other lyricists.

Of course, I did not stop using my writing skills to earn money. Right now, I am working as an academic and creative writer. Academic writing includes writing essays, research, and other academic papers of those who are lazy enough to do it themselves or just do not have any idea how to do it and willing to pay a price. I am affiliated to a company who accepts bulk orders, and we are paid for every page that we write. The thing is, we have to do research and cite our references in APA, MLA, Chicago, Turabian and other referencing styles, but it is not much of a challenge. My creative writing job includes writing articles for companies who want to advertise their services and products. These articles are like teasers and reviews. I still write poetry these days. Still focusing on death, pain, longing and frustrations.

This is my life as a writer. Crazily insane, I know. Redundancy for emphasis. But I am not just a writer. I was also an ESL teacher and an editor, and right now, I am a book publicist. But these parts of my life aren’t meant to be included here. That will be my next blog out of boredom. Now, I have to go and grab some lunch.

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