Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Percy Jackson

I can't remember what made me buy the first book of the Percy Jackson series. After being disappointed by 39 clues, I was not too keen on reading books with a 12 yr old as the main character (Harry Potter was an exception), but with the film coming out, I was curious.

I remember reading the first book during our Holy Week vacation at Tagaytay. After speed-reading through it, I wanted to go home to Manila and buy the next books. When that happens, the book is good. When I started reading the 2nd book, I didn't stop to breathe until I finished the 5th book and I did this in 4 straight days. In fact, I finished The Olympian in a day--and a work day to boot. I started while waiting for the morning shuttle, read through lunch, read again while waiting for the evening shuttle, and finished it when I got home.

It's odd considering I am not that familiar with Greek mythology. I mean, I know who the gods are plus other trivia that I got from watching Hercules (the cartoons) but that's basically it. But I really love the series.

Percy Jackson is a demigod--the son of a god, Poseidon to be specific, and a mortal. The books talk about his quests and how he and his friends get to defeat Kronos--the father of the gods.

I love fantasy/adventure books, especially those that are adapted in the modern setting. The dialogue was also very witty and funny. There are times that I would suddenly laugh while reading drawing stares from people in the shuttle.

Though the Percy Jackson series looks like its written for an early teens audience, adults, like me, can still appreciate it. A good read if you're a fan of Greek mythology and quests.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Writer's Block

It's been years since I wrote fiction. I used to write for and was part of the editorial staff of our school's literary journal when I was in college. I loved writing then whether it was for my own pleasure or for others. I wrote in English and amazingly, excelled in Filipino (I was recognized for my Filipino poetry). Unfortunately, that drive to write died down after I graduated from College. I do not write creatively anymore, instead, I keep this online journal which serves as an outlet for my happiness and frustrations. I don't know if it's considered creative writing as none of it is fiction but at least I get to practice putting words together.

My current job involves a lot of report writing--technical and formal writing at its very best. I have to basically unlearn writing creatively and keep my report emotionless so to speak (No "I"s, "we"s or "us"). I have to watch my words to ensure that I deliver my findings with no bias whatsoever. Basically, creating a document which would bore the hell out of a person. I would think that the more boring it is, the better the report will turn out to be.

I used to think that writers block only strike writers who have to come up with novels or stories or poems. I never thought that it would apply to report writing as well. I have a paper that I've been trying to finish today but I can't seem to find the right words to express the thoughts that are floating in my head. Everything is there--the summary of my findings and my recommendations--but I end up putting emotions in the words that it's so difficult to edit them out.

For the past hour, I've been pulling my hair or staring at the swimming pool view outside trying to clear my head so I can write properly. Every few minutes or so, I return to my document and try to add a few words but end up deleting them as they sound quite off. Hopefully, I'll be able to pull myself together so I can finish this. I am so way out of schedule already and I have a couple of reports still waiting to be written.

Photo from of

Monday, June 07, 2010

A Wedding Reception to Remember

I read this article in today's edition of Manila Bulletin and other than wondering what Morgan Spurlock and the anti-McD's crowd would say about this, I was very much amused and maybe, a bit envious.

Whenever I would read weddings featured in newspapers, I would be amazed at how original and extraordinary some of them turned out to be. I would've wanted mine to be like that. But my husband and I are not creative people so we had a difficult time conceptualizing a one-of-a-kind wedding.

Nevertheless, I was still happy with how our wedding came out as it was what we always wanted. Not too exceptional that would merit a newspaper article (hey, I was not exactly like those brides who had/have svelte and sexy figures during their weddings) but special enough for us to remember that day for the rest of our lives.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Powerbooks Greenbelt

I had a nice experience at Powerbooks last Friday and I would recommend that branch (maybe all branches) to all book lovers out there.

I was out shopping for a book--a continuation of a book that I was reading--in Powerbooks Greenbelt. I already got the second book and was browsing around for another one when I was approached by a sales clerk asking me what I would want to read. When she saw what I picked out, she recommended other books of the same nature (angels). She went with me to the young adult section and picked out a few books for me to choose from. I quizzed her about the stories and she actually read them and gave me some spoilers from the books. I bought all the books she recommended.

Powerbooks did more than renovate their interior when they fixed their shop. They apparently educated their staff. I don't know if they're required to read the books they are selling or actually hire people who read but whatever they're doing, I hope they keep it up as it really makes me buy the books they recommend. It's not enough that they put a sign saying why they recommend it. It helps if you get to talk to someone who can really give you an idea what the book is all about.

Which reminds me of my Fully Booked experience.

I really love Fully Booked because of their stock. They have books that Powerbooks and National Bookstore doesn't have. Unfortunately, I had a rather negative experience with their Cebu branch which makes me think twice of going back to their shops to look for new books. When I was in Cebu, I asked the clerks if they can recommend books about angels as I love reading about them. I don't know if they don't understand me since I'm speaking in Tagalog but when they pointed me to someone who can speak Tagalog, she couldn't recommend much and can't really tell me much about the books that were on display. It was really disappointing.

Anyway, kudos to Powerbooks, most especially to Lorie, who recommended the books to me. Job well done!