LIKHAAN: The University of the Philippines Institute of Creative Writing is now accepting applications for the 61st UP National Writers Workshop. It will be held sometime in April 2022. The venue or platform is subject to change in accordance with current safety protocols.

The workshop aims to help published writers further hone their craft. Writers from regions outside NCR are highly encouraged to apply. All fellows are entitled to a modest stipend. Amenities will also be provided suitable to the setup of the workshop, whether it is online or physical.

The UP National Writers Workshop is committed to ensuring a safe space of creative freedom and productive discourse for all participants for the entire duration of the workshop.

Below are the guidelines for application:


  • Applicants must be writers in English, Filipino or other Philippine languages (manuscripts must be accompanied by a translation in English or Filipino).
  • They must have attended at least one creative writing workshop (national/regional), or earned a degree in Creative Writing/Malikhaing Pagsulat or related fields, or won at least one national/international literary award. Writers who have been fellows at any of the UP National Writers Workshops are eligible.
  • Applicants must have published at least one book of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or have had a full-length play or a film produced. (The qualifications may be waived in exceptionally meritorious cases, with the unanimous concurrence of the UP ICW Fellows, Associates, and Advisers).


  • A digital word file (.doc or .docx) of one original unpublished manuscript. The manuscripts could be a collection of short pieces (short story, poetry, creative nonfiction, one-act play, short film scripts), or long-form work (a novel, a script for a documentary, or a full-length script for TV, film, or theater) to be discussed during the workshop. Submissions should not exceed 6,000 words. Please follow this format: 12 points, Times New Roman font, double-spaced, 8 1/2 x 11. The manuscript must not have been submitted to any other publication or workshop.
  • A digital word file (.doc or .docx) of an essay on “What I write, how, and why” in relation to the work-in-progress. The essay may include, not only the applicant’s literary, cultural, and academic influences, but also personal influences relating to family, class origin, ethnicity, gender and sexuality, among others. The essay must be no longer than 2,500 words and will be the basis for a 20-minute presentation that the fellow is expected to do during the workshop. Please follow this format: 12 points, Times New Roman font, double-spaced, 8 1/2 x 11. For reference on how to write this essay, please read Here and Now: Selected Poetics from the UP National Writers Workshop (attached below).
  • Scanned copies of the applicant’s published work: this includes the cover and the copyright page for books, and for anthologies and journals, the cover, copyright page, and table of contents where the name of the author and their contribution is shown. For films and plays, a digital copy of the poster with its release date
  • Filled-out application form in the appropriate filename format, with required photo, ID scan, and certification form sent as attachments

All submissions with complete requirements and fully accomplished application form must be sent to [email protected] Please follow the subject line and filename format: [Language], [Genre], [Title], [Author’s Last Name]. For example: English, Fiction, “The Life,” Aquino. The deadline for submissions is February 28, 2022.

Only writers who go through the complete application process will be considered. The chosen fellows must be present for the full duration of the week-long workshop.

The workshop panel is comprised of the Advisers, Fellows, and Associates of the UP ICW: National Artist for Literature Virgilio S. Almario, UP ICW Director Romulo P. Baquiran, Roland B. Tolentino, Jr., Gémino H. Abad, Jr., Luna Sicat-Cleto, Jose Y. Dalisay Jr., Eugene Y. Evasco, J. Neil Garcia, Vladimeir B. Gonzales, Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo, Victor Emmanuel Carmelo Nadera Jr., Charlson Ong, Ramon Guillermo, Anna Felicia Sanchez, and Jun Cruz Reyes. The workshop director for the 2022 cycle is Charlson Ong.  

Charlson Ong is a fictionist and scriptwriter. His works range from parodies of well-loved Filipino texts to insightful treatments of Chinese-Filipino culture, a prime example being the short story collection “Men of the East and Other Stories.” Ong has joined various workshops here and abroad, and has accumulated numerous awards including the National Book Award, Palanca, and the Dr. Jose P. Rizal Award for Excellence. He is currently a professor of creative writing and literature at the University of the Philipines.

For inquiries about the workshop, email us at [email protected]