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Kagay-anon poet among 12 chosen for UP National Writers Workshop

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines (XU Communications Office) — A student of Xavier Ateneo’s MA Literature program was named one of the 12 writing fellows at the 57th University of the Philippines National Writers Workshop (UPNWW), organized by the Likhaan: UP Institute of Creative Writing.

XU graduate student and Cagayan de Oro City-based poet Mark Anthony “Ton” Daposala says in an online interview he is glad his manuscript was selected for UP NWW, which will run from April 1 to 8.

“I believe this [workshop] will help me greatly, considering that the panel will be critiquing the whole manuscript. Writing a poem is one thing, but gathering and arranging poems in a book is another — it’s an entirely different beast,” Daposala shares.

KAGAY-ANON POET. Mark Anthony “Ton” Daposala, a student of Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan’s MA Literature program, is a fellow at the 2018 University of the Philippines National Writers Workshop. Photo by Anthony Jacob Karagdag.

The event’s official announcement reads that the UP NWW, which was previously dedicated to helping up-and-coming writers, has been reformatted to mentoring writers in mid-career. The workshop also aims to help writers who have already published (or are on the verge of publishing) a book, or have won major literary awards, further hone their craft.

“I don’t know what to expect but I hope after the event, whatever the things I will learn from the UP National Writers Workshop, I can apply them in my project and, perhaps, I can confidently say that my book of poems will be ready [by then],” says Daposala, a senior fellow for poetry at the Nagkahiusang Magsusulat sa Cagayan de Oro (NAGMAC), a collective of established and up-and-coming writers of poetry, fiction (short stories and novels), creative non-fiction, plays, and screenplays in Northern Mindanao.

The selection of fellows was presided over by this year’s workshop director Vladimeir Gonzales.

The 2018 UP NWW fellows are as follows:

Bernardo O Aguay Jr (Poetry, Filipino)
Niles Jordan Breis (Essay, Filipino)
Victorette Joy Z Campilan (Fiction, English)
Noreen Capili (Fiction, Filipino)
Carlito P Casaje (Essay, English)
Eljay Castro Deldoc (Drama, Filipino)
Patricia Celina A Ngo (Fiction, English)
Romeo P Peña (Poetry, Filipino)
Anna Sanchez (Essay, English)
Cherilyn Sarigumba (Fiction, Filipino)
Januar Yap (Fiction, Filipino, translated from Cebuano)
Mark Anthony L Daposala (Poetry, Filipino, translated from Cebuano)

The workshop’s teaching panel is composed of National Artist for Literature Virgilio Almario, National Artist for Literature Bienvenido Lumbera, Amelia Lapeña-Bonifacio, Gémino Abad, Jose Dalisay Jr, Charlson Ong, Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo, J Neil Garcia, Jun Cruz Reyes, Victor Emmanuel Carmelo Nadera Jr, Luna Sicat Cleto, Eugene Y Evasco, Roland Tolentino, and Vladimeir Gonzales.

All fellows will receive a modest stipend and free hotel accommodation.

The UPNWW is complemented by the Amelia Lapeña-Bonifacio Writers Workshop, which is geared towards young writers.(XU Communications Office)



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