Perfect 5s for Newbie Writers

Are you someone who wants to write but doesn’t know how to start? Then this blog post is for you.

I am not a mainstream writer. I started blogging since I’m 16. I am DF Bloggers Int’l youngest member (so far) and I’m 18 now. I have self-published one of my stories and now I am serving my school as a campus journalist. I guess the wisdom taken from my experience, read books and other people is enough to help someone who is just starting to write. J

Here are the 5 things you need to be a writer:

5 ways to start

  1. Read, read, read
  2. Write, write, write
  3. Know your genre
  4. Formulate Goals
  5. Fall down, Stand up

5 way’ to improve:

  1. Enjoy Writing
  2. Be willing to be mentored – approach editor friends, go to workshops
  3. Filter Criticism – Don’t accept those that “destroy” you, listen to those that can “help” you.
  4. Make writing a habit
  5. Understand the ground where you stand

5 no-nos!

  1. Look up to high
  2. Make bad comments about other writers
  3. Fight on the internet
  4. Make you fandom fight for you on the internet
  5. Don’t assume you’re great enough – life is a continuous learning process, so is writing. The huge numbers are not the only indicator of a writer’s career.

My 5 writer mantras

  1. You need to see the ordinary from the extraordinary – “Tingnan ang panget sa maganda at ang maganda sa panget.”
  2. Be an eagle – I mean, have the eagle eyes. Increase your sensitivity because it’s a writer’s unwritten requirement.
  3. I’m writing because I love writing
  4. It hurts but I laaav eeet!
  5. Inspiration is everywhere.

5 Ways to be Happy with this Career

  1. Learn to love him/her(writing) like a true lover
  2. Define your OWN success
  3. Change your perspective
  4. Treat is as work, do it as a hobby
  5. Reward yourself. Be happy with simple things.

Understand that the publishing scheme today is commercialized. Understand that the trend is a lot of reads, regardless of the quality or standards.

Understand that the world would always need stories and you always have a story to tell, so as a young writer being unnoticed is not your end. :D

Minsan naiisipan kong sumuko pero may boses sa loob kong nagsasabing, ‘kailangan ng mundo ang mga kuwento mo.’ (Alberto, 2014)

Walang Love Life! (Tinedyer Blues)

Photo Credit: foreveraloneplz.deviantart.com

Eigtheen years old.

Hindi na bata, hindi parin naman ganoon katanda.

Eighteen years old. Height pang-twelve.

Walang love life.

Hopeless romantic ako. Mahilig ako sa romance at romance writer kuno ako pero alam n’yo ang nakakatuwa? Wala akong love life. Minsan nang may nagtanong sa akin, ‘yung mga frustration ko raw ba ay nilalagay ko sa mga sinusulat ko? Partly yes pero hindi lahat. Miserable ang love life ng mga characters ko at ayaw ko ng ganoong buhay(ex. si Colleen ng My Firsts With Him at Endless Second Chances).

Nakaka-miss ding magka-love life. Minsan, naiisip ko masarap din kaya ‘yung may makakasama kang maglakad sa mall habang may hawak-hawak kayong ice cream cone na uunahan pang matunaw ng taong kasama mo dahil sa katititig mo. Masarap din kaya ‘yung may makakuwentuhan ka ng kahit anong bagay. Nakaka-miss din ‘yung mapupuyat ka kasi may ka-text kang matiyagang mag-reply kahit “hehe” lang ang huling text mo. Masarap din kaya ‘yung may korning magpapakeleg mech seye. In short, masarap ma-in love tipong nakanganga ka sa kisame at lumulutang kukute mo sa ere. Masarap ngang ma-in love pero in reality, mahirap at masakit din.

Minsan naiisip ko, bakit ako single? Bakit walang dumadating? Hintay lang yata ako ng hintay(apat na taon na rin, lol!). Palibhasa, kung ang lalaki southpole, paniguradong northpole ako at vice versa. Ang hirap sa akin, kapag nagkaroon ng crush, kung ‘di crush ng bayan na taken na, minsan naman ang napupusuan ko baklang mas malandi pa sa akin. Saklap.

Hindi ko naman maiisip ang mga ito kung ang mga tao sa paligid ko, wala ring love life na tulad ko. Kaso, niloloko yata ako ng tadhana. Nagka-boyfriend si ganyan. Nagka-girlfriend si ganoon. May ka-MU si ganyan. May nanliligaw kay ano. Hay nako. Ako nalang napag-iwanan. Wawa  naman ako.

Kapag tanungang love life, umiiwas ang tanong sa akin. Palibhasa wala akong love life. AHAHAHAHA. (Single and ready to jingle bells)

Aminado ako, minsan naiisip ko bakit ako wala pa? Bakit wala pa ulit? ‘Yung iba kasi sa paligid ko mayroon na at nakamit na nila ‘yung second chance sa buhay nila PERO..

Naisip ko on the other hand, hindi rin pala masaya ‘yung everyday kang magpapa-load kasi obligado kang i-text sa labs(ang gastos dude). Masaya rin ‘yung feeling na walang problema kasi nag-away kayo, nagtampo siya, ganyan-ganito. Wala kang gagastusin kasi wala kang reregaluhan sa bawat monthsarry(yehey, sabog confetti!). Malaya kang pumunta kung saan-saan dahil hindi mo na kailangang magpaalam kay boyfrie or girlfie(yikes). No need to make paganda every date, wala ka namang ka-date eh!(ahihihi) Higit sa lahat, kapag lalabas ka, hindi ka obligadong ilibre si mahal. Puwedeng-puwede kang maging kuripot! Date with yourself lagi ang peg. Ajejeje.

Kanina ko lang ito na-realize habang nakaupo sa food court na puno ng love birds. Alam mo naman ang kaibigang single, takbuhan ng mga taken. Naisip ko, wala akong problema na katulad ng sa kanila. Problema ko lang sa buhay, paano magmu-multiply ang paper bills ko sa wallet? Paano magiging uno ang mahiwagang grades ko? Paano ako papasa ng mga subject na tinulugan ko lang? Paano na ako hindi mapagkakamalang first year kahit third year na ako? Bakit hindi pusa si Hello Kitty, eh “kitty” nga eh? At higit sa lahat, bakit naka-aircon ang mga baboy ni Binay?

Naisip ko, ohhh kay sarap maging single. Namnamin while it lasts. Hihintayin ko ang forever ko. Sabi nga ng mga lolo, lola, tito, tita at iba pang nakaka-tanda, “Career muna.” Kapag mapera ka na raw, tsaka ka na lumandi. :P

I mean, set your priorities first before anything else. Sa tingin ko, dapat gawin ito ng ibang kabataang katulad ko. Appreciate the gift of being single and the quality time with family and friends. Kasi kung may syotabells ako, palagi siguro akong nasa date dahil hectic ang student life ko.

Kung may love life ka na, eh ano ba’ng magagawa ko? Basta ‘wag munang hayaang mag-meet si egg at sperm habang nag-aaral pa, kung ‘di patay tayo.

Sabi nga ng isang Facebook page(hindi ko matandaan kung ano): “’Di baling delay gumraduate, ‘wag lang ang period ni girlfriend.”

ememalberts

10/11/14 10:47 PM

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A Part of Me…

“In the future, I will study creativity and how it rules the lives of artists most especially writers. If you heard about the Psychology of Creative writing, I want to bring it to the Philippines. Or maybe, just maybe I’ll be the kind of Psychologist that practices Expressive Arts Therapy and I will promote creative writing as a coping mechanism. These are some parts of my Psych major plan. My writer’s plan is something as daring as becoming a published author, making a mark in the Philippine Literature and the best part – changing people’s lives.”

 

Here’s a part of the autobiography I am writing for my Principles of Guidance subject. I posted this part because I like the end product. :D

Wrong Decision or Wrong Timing? (Why I Am Thinking of Quitting)

Yesterday, I was really sick. I have a high fever, my head is terribly aching, my joints are in pain, my whole body is in pain and my throat is full of phlegm (yikes!). I took the whole day to rest, waking up only to eat and take my meds. Saturday night, I’m still not feeling well and even asked a cousin to massage my head and feet, believing it will help me recover fully. Sadly, it didn’t work.

The next morning, I am feeling almost the same only the fever is almost gone. Now, the phlegm in my throat is bothering me. I am coughing every minute then puke the little phlegm I can get out of my system. I can’t be separated from our sink. Ugh. My throat is aching out of serious coughing.

The hard part of being sick in the middle of business is that things are awaiting you: our plan of activities expected to be submitted tomorrow, our speech choir performance on Aug. 22 which I failed to attend the practice last Saturday, articles to be written, stuff of The Centerpost to be accomplished, and school stuff I should finish! Gah, I just feel like crying. Dear God, I am a weakling.

I think the sickness is the cause of over fatigue. I went home too late for the past week, waking up too early and going to school with a heavy load in my bag(with my heavy laptop in it).

Also, I am exhibiting signs and symptoms of another disease. I am becoming depressed(usually I’m not), I am becoming pessimistic which is so not me, I’m having heart palpitations without coffee, my hands are trembling without a reason and my normal menstrual cycle is destroyed. If the disease is real and will be confirmed through blood test, I think I have no choice but to leave my current position. It’s not like cancer or what but you just know when your body can’t perform the job. You just know when your body is shouting “enough!”

You just know when you are incapable anymore. I think it is slowly happening. I think I am becoming incapable.

Now I am asking, is it a mistake that I accepted the position? Or is it a matter of wrong timing?

 

ememalberts

6:24 PM, 8/17/2014

The Rough Part of Hard Times (Being that campus journalist)

To serve the school publication is not my niche. It’s not my forte, it’s not my strength. But here I am.

Our team gave their best for the second magazine release. It took our sleep, our leisure time, our supposed to be study time. It’s close to say that it took everything away. We even sacrificed time to be spent with families and friends. We sacrificed a lot.

We got rough days with our first issue. We knew we committed mistakes, we knew it wasn’t the best so we tried hard to claim back what’s lost.

BUT, A BIG BIG BUT…

When you give your best to rebuild what’s been lost and someone starts to break the pieces you’re trying hard to put back(and successfully does), fuck that feeling. It hurts man.

I will never forget this day for my ears got to catch loud shouts and that felt like bad accusations. My ears accepted comments I know it wasn’t meant to hear. My heart’s breaking for something that’s not worth heart breaking(and it should not be breaking).

I don’t want to hate anyone. I just hate that we have to be treated that way. I just hate that the name I carry right now sounds so bad. I just hate the situation that I am carrying a mighty name has a bad reputation it does not deserve. It feels like we are stereotyped as the worst. It feels like we are not required to be human because we are required to be perfect.

If you’re a writer and your work is being criticized, the criticism is not meant to hurt you. It’s not really. The comments are meant for the paper. Maybe you know how it feels like to feel wasted. Wasted in a way that your 100% efforts feels like nothing. There’s no little bit appreciation, even just a little bit.

Maybe it hurts this way because I was one with the paper. I gave everything, my heart including my soul in it. I love it so much that even though my life already had its big issues, I still chose to serve the paper(with a lot of issues associated with it). I still accepted the position Editor-in-Chief.

I still accepted it even though it is totally out of my comfort zone. I have dreams as a romance writer and I know I have to sacrifice parts of them for the paper. There will be a big delay for the romance writer side for her goals for this year needs/demands to be postponed.

I am sacrificing a big part of my career as a novelist, as a blogger, as the writer for my solid readers. I will be sacrificing a lot for this paper and on the end of this semester, I don’t want to feel as wasted as this.

Don’t judge. I’m just hurt. I’m really hurt. I’m not done crying. So just let me.

(Reminding myself that it’s just a paper, the paper’s the only one being criticized, not my whole being. Reminding myself that this will be the last time I’ll cry because of this. Reminding myself that after this, I will be better.)

8/13/2014 8:55 PM

ememalberts

One Way to Reach That Dream – Self Publishing (and the Story Behind It)

Photo Credit: wishbowl.org

For every struggling artist, there is the desire to have the “spotlight moment” – the moment when you want your craft to be known and recognized by people. For a writer, his/her ultimate spotlight moment is a published book.

As we all know, the publishing scheme today is something that’s somehow dependent on the fan base of online writers most especially from Wattpad. It’s a completely different set up from what we had before because right now it is normal for publishers to knock on the doors of famous writers and be offered a publishing deal. This is something I and my other fellow writers term as Wattpad era.

Wattpad era opened new opportunities for so many young aspiring writers but the standards they have for this era is not applicable to everyone. The publishers release the same themes over and over again in order to maintain the sales. This is good for a small number of authors, not for all kinds of writers in our country. Due to that, some writers are going indie. Usually, a writer goes indie to have control over in terms of cover and distribution of their craft or they just want to make the dream happen.

I want a published book (every writer dreams of it). My first option was to be picked by a publisher. I was readying one story to be passed to the giants but I didn’t proceed because it feels like the manuscript was not fit for the standards. The option of self-publishing occurred to me when my news feed had pictures of soon to be self-published books. I was like, “Hey, she did that! Why can’t I?”

Click the picture to reserve :)

Click the picture to reserve :)

I thought of it for a thousand times before I sealed the decision. One big life event urged me to really do it. I even asked Mommy Joyce’s blessing before proceeding. I also asked God in my prayers if this is the “right time” and I know He answered. I realized I got the means, I got the people who can help me, I got the courage and guts so why not?

So weeks before classes officially open, I was extremely busy about the book, My Firsts With Him. My first young adult romance story is going to be a book, yippee! But what if no one will avail? What if my efforts will go to waste? It was one tough decision to make while being flooded with negativity but I still went on. I’m glad I did and it’s a success.

I figured out I just need some push (from others and from myself as well). I am now a self-published author! I’m now an author!

I think every writer (and all other artists)  go on the roller coaster of emotions of being confident, then weary, then happy, inspired then upset once again before being successful. I think it’s normal. The thing about being a dedicated writer is not giving up when you are experiencing this roller coaster of emotions while juggling the demands of life with this unsure career. I’m glad I didn’t give up because if I did, I won’t reach this far.

I am glad to present you my first romance novel, my first self-published book My Firsts With Him. The book costs P250 and I am still ready to accept reservations. Please fill up the reservation form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/11_6pQJJbzGUshrezvxyes4tEtvN413Y3PQvO1YNAniY/viewform

 For everyone who ordered, thank you so much. Thank you for helping me reach this dream. This is just the start, I will keep on writing.

If you’re just starting, just keep on writing.

ememalberts

8/10/14 6:48 PM

The Real Story

Last year, I was able to enter The Centerpost, the official publication of my school, Manila Tytana Colleges (formerly Manila Doctors College). I was excited and scared at the same time because I was clueless in the world of campus journalism. I was not a campus journalist in high school, mark that. All I have was a little skill on constructing sentences that can be considered news.

But I have a close professional relationship with our Editor-In-Chief. Hands-on, he taught me how to fabricate news and features articles, and even taught me how to edit them. In no time, I was producing a lot of articles and I enjoy the process. In no time, I was promoted to be the Assistant News Editor.

Over the whole summer, I contemplated on the question “Should I stay on The Centerpost or not?”

I have a lot of reasons not to stay, one is I wanted to focus on my fiction works in progress(saw that? I said workS”). I wanted to because they are sleeping for a long time. I mean “sayang!”

Also, the editorial work will drain all the energy from your body (literally). Add the bullsh*ts of an environment you can’t control, stir, mix and enjoy the bittersweet process. Staying on the Editorial board feels like being inside the arena of the Hunger Games. There’s no safe zone, one wrong move and you’re dead.

But we are still alive. I am still alive. I am breathing and I surprisingly took the qualifying exam for this year.

I took the qualifying exam, wrote an editorial about the publishing scheme we have these days and hoped that I won’t pass. Hehe. I really wished I will fail the exam. What kind of thinking is that, right? I may be out of my mind.

A week after the exam, we’re called for the interview. Tah Dah! The EDITORIAL BOARD interview. During the interview proper, nakakaramdam na ako. Para kasing iba ang mga tanong sa akin(haha, biglang nag Tagalog).

Habang naghihintay ng results, ang daming nagsasabing baka ako ang maging “the one”.

Kung paano ko nalaman na ako nga, ay isang unfortunate event pa. Kasalanan ng tropa ko, kasi naman eh na-tsismis niya agad eh hindi pa lumalabas ang official results. Kaya hinintay ko ang official announcement at habang naghihintay ng official, mine-mentor na ako ni former EIC how to be an EIC naman. Oh, ‘di ba? Ang taray!

Alanganin padin kasi talaga ako. Parang, “Ako? Weh? Talaga? ‘Di nga?” ang peg ko.

First Day as (Official) EIC

Wow, okay. Hindi na OA ang reaction unlike noong unang narinig ko. Umiyak ako noong unang beses kong marinig dahil sa tuwa. Pangarap ko kasi ito. Pangarap na tila napakalayong maabot pero nangyari. Wow, thank You Daddy God.

Pakiramdam ko kaya ko. Pakiramdam ko, kaya ng Editorial Board ngayon. Pakiramdam ko, taon namin ngayon. Ewan ko lang ha, confidence? Hmmm.

May tiwala ang mga tao sa paligid ko na kaya ko, kaya dapat pagkatiwalaan ko rin ang sarili ko.

8/1/2014 – official Editor-In-Chief of The Centerpost. *bow*