ERLINDA ENRIQUEZ PANLILIO has led two lives. In her younger days she was a hotelier-restaurateur, working in the family business of hotels, restaurants, an inflight kitchen, and a resort. After taking early retirement in her 50s, she went back to school and obtained an M.A. degree in English Studies, major in Creative Writing, in 2000, from the University of the Philippines. (Her undergraduate degree from the U.P. was B.S.H.E., major in Foods and Nutrition in 1959.) Panlilio’s M.A. thesis was awarded Best Thesis in Creative Writing (for using feminist themes) by the UP Center for Women’s Studies. It eventually became an award-winning book,Teacher To Tycoon—The Life and Times of Trinidad Diaz Enriquez (Anvil, 2000), cited Best Biography by the Manila Critics Circle at the National Book Awards (NBA) for the year 2000. She coedited with Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo Why I Travel and Other Essays by 14 Women (Anvil 2000), which likewise won the Manila Critics Circle’s Best Anthology of Travel Essays for that year. The third book she edited, From This Day Forward: Widows and Widowers Write (Anvil 2002) won in the Anthology category of the National Book Awards for 2002. In December 2003 Anvil launched Panlilio’s 4th book, Comfort Food, a collection of essays by writers on their comfort food, which Panlilio edited. This book was likewise awarded as “Best Food Book” in the NBA for 2003. This was followed bySlow Food, coedited by Panlilio and Felice Sta. Maria, launched by Anvil in 2005, which again got the Manila Critics’ nod in the NBA for that year.
In 2006, Anvil launched The Manila We Knew, a nostalgia book on the Manila of the ‘40s to the’70s, edited by Erlinda Enriquez Panlilio. It is a finalist in this year’s National Book Awards for books published in 2006.
Panlilio has contributed essays (and a poem) in the following anthologies:
1. “My Two St. Theresas” in Behind the Walls, coedited by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard and Marily Ysip Orosa (Anvil Publishing, 2005)
2. “My Confused Eyes” in My Fair Maladies, edited by Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo (Milflores Publishing, 2005)
3. “Opening New Doors” in Life on the Cusp, coedited by Rita Ledesma & Mert J. Loinaz (Anvil, 2003)
4. “The Joy of Collecting” in Consuming Passions, edited by Jaime C. Laya (Anvil 2003)
5. “Festival Supermall—Muntinlupa” in Philippine Shopping Malls, ed. by Antonio A. Hidalgo (Milflores, 2000)
6. “Shadowboxing With My Mother” in Shaking the Family Tree (Anvil, 1998)
7. “Second Chances” in Love Gathers All, the Philippine-Singapore Anthology of Love Poetry (Anvil, 2002)