Call for Emerging Writers from the Visayas: The 2019 Cebu Young Writers Studio

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The Libulan Queer Collective, a writers bloc of queer poets, essayists, fictionists, and playwrights from the southern Philippines, in partnership with YOUTeacH Philippines-Central Visayas and young writers collective Hablon, is now accepting applications to the 2019 Cebu Young Writers Studio to be held on February 2019 in Cebu City.

The Cebu Young Writers Studio, an adaptation of the Cagayan de Oro Young Writers Studio, is an annual creative writing fellowship for 12 of the most promising emerging poets, fictionists, essayists, playwrights, and screenwriters born and/or based in the regions of Western Visayas, Central Visayas, and Eastern Visayas. Fellowships are available per genre — poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction/essay, and drama. (Applicants may apply for more than one genre.)

To be eligible, an applicant must (1) be born and/or based in the Visayas and (2) not have attended any regional and national writers’ workshops organized by reputable creative writing centers and institutes.

Entries (original and unpublished works) in Binisaya and/or English (or those written in Hiligaynon, Waray, and other Visayan languages with translations to Binisaya and/or English) shall be composed of any of the following:

For a Poetry fellowship: a suite of 3 poems written for the page or for performance (not more than 60 lines each); or

For a Fiction fellowship: 2 short stories (2000 to 5000 words each) of any genre; or 1 novel chapter (3000 to 6000 words each) with a synopsis; or a suite of 3 works of flash fiction (500 to 1500 words each); or

For a Creative Nonfiction/Essay fellowship: 2 works of creative nonfiction (2000 to 5000 words each) such as nonfiction memoir, personal essays, travel writing, or other hybridized forms; or a suite of 3 micro-essays or works of flash nonfiction (500 to 1500 words each); or

For a Drama fellowship: 1 one-act play or 1 short screenplay.

The general theme for works to be submitted this year is on ‘sub/urbanscapes’—literary pieces that discuss sub/urban spaces and places in the Visayas—but is not confined only to this theme. Works that reflect the dynamics between the queer place and queer person may also qualify for the Libulan Queer Fellowship.

This creative writing fellowship will include manuscript critiquing, craft lectures, parallel writing exercises, and mentoring sessions to be facilitated by young writers from the Visayas — Wilfreda Cabusas, Jessrel E Gilbuena, Jae Mari Magdadaro, Richellet Chan, and Arian Tejano. Libulan queer anthology co-editor Alton Melvar Dapanas, multilingual playwright and poet Mai Santillan, and poet Thomas Leonard Shaw will serve as guest panelists. Fictionist and playwright R Joseph Dazo is the workshop director.

The workshop will also feature craft lectures by editors of the forthcoming Dan-ag Literary Journal of Central Visayas — poet and lyricist Cindy Velasquez on poetry, fictionist and screenwriter CD Borden on fiction, playwright and director Rudy Aviles on playwriting, and essayist Johanna Michelle Lim on creative nonfiction.

The Cebu Young Writers Studio aims to assert a creative writing culture of mentorship and critiquing in the Visayan regions and institutionalize an open training platform for beginners of the creative writing craft.

Accepted fellows will be provided with a certificate, lunch, and snacks. (There is no registration fee but fellows, if accepted, will shoulder their own transportation and accommodation expenses to and from the venue during the whole duration of the workshop.)

Electronic copies, in MS Word format, Garamond font 12, of the manuscript may be emailed to libulanqueercollective@gmail.com with the subject Genre_CYWS (example, CNF_CYWS). The author’s name should not appear on the manuscript. On the email’s body, kindly put your full name, address (within the Visayas), institutional affiliation (workplace and/or school), mobile number, and a short bio note (150-300 words in the third person).

Deadline for the submission of manuscripts is on 5 January 2019. All inquiries must be addressed to the workshop director through the indicated email address.

Senior high school/college teachers of Literature/Panitikan and Creative Writing/Malikhaing Pagsulat courses from the Visayas who wish to observe the sessions may send a letter of intent to the workshop director through the email.

The Libulan Queer Collective is the writers’ bloc behind the Libulan: Binisaya Anthology of Queer Literature and the online literary journal Payag Habagatan: New Writings from the South.

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