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Oro writers’ group organizes Mindanao-wide workshop

THE Nagkahiusang Magsusulat sa Cagayan de Oro (Nagmac), in partnership with the Xavier Center for Culture and the Arts and the Libulan Queer Collective, with support from Little Me Academy, organized the 2018 CDO Young Writers Studio at the XCCA Conference Room, 2F Museo de Oro, Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan.

On the panel for this year’s workshop were young writers hailing from all over the southern Philippines — resident fellows of Nagmac such as poets Ben Aguilar and Ton Daposala; spoken word artist and poet Adeva Jane Esparrago; screenwriter and playwright Dennis Flores; fictionist and essayist Abigail James; fictionists NH Legaspi and EJ Villena. Joining them were this year’s guest panelists — poet Mariel Alonzo of Davao City, essayist Jade Mark Capiñanes of General Santos City, fictionist and playwright R Joseph Dazo of Cebu City, fictionist Sigrid Gayangos of Zamboanga City, playwright Dominique La Victoria of Cagayan de Oro City, poet and playwright Gil Nambatac of Iligan City, and essayist and poet Ria Valdez of Davao City. Leading the panelists was the workshop director, essayist, poet, and editor Alton Melvar Dapanas.

The writing fellows for poetry were Gwyneth Sarah Marie Bengzon (Poetry in English/Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan Senior High School) from Cagayan de Oro City; Francheska Marie Cortejos (Poetry in English/University of the Philippines Diliman) from Cagayan de Oro City; and Lance Harvey Gonzales (Poetry in Binisaya/Ateneo de Davao University Senior High School) from Lianga, Surigao del Sur.

The writing fellows for drama were Sean Jhon Anecio (One-Act Play in Filipino/Jose Rizal Memorial State University-Main) from Dapitan City and Alessandro Kennz Nioda (Short Screenplay in English/Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan) from Cagayan de Oro City.

The writing fellows for fiction were Jevin Orceda Astillero (Flash Fiction in Filipino/Molave Vocational Technical School) from Molave, Zamboanga del Sur and Jeepee Magallanes (Short Story in Binisaya/Bonifacio National High School) from Bonifacio, Misamis Occidental.

The writing fellows for creative nonfiction were Freddielyn Bolasa-Pontemayor (Personal Essay in Filipino/De La Salle University) from Maramag, Bukidnon; Mary Therese Mole (Flash Nonfiction in English/Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan) from Cagayan de Oro City; and Neil Teves (Memoir in English/Davao City National High School – Senior High School) from Davao City.

The apprentice-fellow for this year was Ikera Olandesca (Little Me Academy) from Cagayan de Oro City.

Aside from the critiquing of submitted manuscripts, the two-day workshop included talks on each genre, including the inaugural Antonio Enriquez Memorial Lecture on Fiction. It also featured an exclusive mentoring session between the panelists and fellows to enhance their workshop experience. This year marks the third year of the CDO Young Writers Studio. (nagmac)


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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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