Introducing NeoNovelVerse

I’ve always wanted to get published. I’ve always wanted to tell my stories. And I’ve always wanted to collaborate on something new and groundbreaking. Now, thanks to an online course I took in 2015 (SmithsonianX’s Rise of Superheroes in Pop Culture) I’m connected with six other people with the same dream, and we’re working on making it a reality together. Introducing NeoNovelVerse: a collection of seven novels bringing bold new characters to life though prose rather than the classic comic format, because there’s no reason why superheroes can’t be loved in both!

We’re working together to create the next great superhero universe, but to get our start in publishing we need help– your help. So follow us on Facebook or Twitter to get updates, sneak peeks and get to know the team and the universe. More importantly, contribute to our IndieGogo fundraising campaign to help us reach our goal of $25,000 for copyediting, cover design, interior design, printing, distribution and marketing. 

  
Here’s what you can expect from my novel, Patrol and the Heroes of Maharlika City: a fast-talking DJ, an idealistic millennial, a jaded former heroine, a disgraced and corrupt former hero, a crime boss with a soft spot, an intrepid reporter in a hard place, an enigmatic teenager who glows, a single father, a girl who talks to machines, a genius billionaire, Manila traffic, vapid pop music, gratuitous use of FMA, lots of red tape, Filipino mythology, chase scenes, fight scenes, action, mystery, humor and feels! Patrol is the proud Filipino representation of the NeoNovelVerse, and these characters are just waiting for their chance to break out. So share, donate, spread the word and never shut up about it, because that’s how legends begin!

NeoNovelVerse- the next leap in heroes Facebook page
Click here to support NeoNovelVerse on IndieGogo

A Fairytale About a Bunny and her Dad

Once upon a time there was a bunny.

A bunny named Sabina Bunny.

She had a daddy.

Dad Bunny.

If Sabina Bunny had a question, 

Dad Bunny had an answer.

(It was always the right answer.)

So if Sabina Bunny got confused, or lost, or didn’t know where to start,

She always asked Dad Bunny for help.

(Dad Bunny always had the right answer.)

(Always.)

And even when she didn’t ask,

Dad Bunny just KNEW.

(Because all good dads do.)

And he helped her anyway.

But he always let her decide what she wanted to do,

As long as she really, really wanted it

And perhaps it was not that hard

Because the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

Even if it does need room to grow

And Sabina Bunny is not done growing yet, but

She knows

She tries to listen

Because she wants to have a little of the best of her Dad Bunny (and her Mom Bunny too) 

And all the rest,

The best of her,

She’ll give back to them

One thing Sabina Bunny knows for sure–

When she needs the answer

She’ll go to Dad Bunny

And the one he helps her find will always be the right one

(Always.)
The End

For my father on his birthday, 2016

  

bombed cities

People’s lives

Laid bare and ruined,

The bones of their existence

Under a cold, unforgiving sky

Where once was rustling, deafening sound

There is only 

Silence

A whisper,

And footprints

Are all that’s left behind

The stories taken by

The ones who fled

The meat stripped off

By the survivors

All that’s left

Are the bones

I guess we do good 

“The opposite of war isn’t peace, it’s creation”- Mark, RENT

The recent ISIS attacks on Beirut, Lebanon and Paris have rocked the world with a storm cloud of varying emotions and reactions: grief. Outrage. Fear. Desperation. Disappointment. Sympathy. It has made a tragedy of funerals and concerts alike. It has made a hero of at least one selfless father at a marketplace in Beirut. It has made the kinder Muslims in the world (and there are very many) fear how society will see them. And it asks us the question yet again: what can be done to stop this?

There are political answers, I’m sure, involving military and intelligence tactics and world leaders of those countries affected. But I’m talking about us, the ordinary people who haven’t been victimized, who are only seeing this happen from the other side of the world. This may sound crazy, but I feel like there’s some sort of obligation to do something– anything we can at all. Then the curtain descends and we hit the brick wall because there is nothing, nothing we can do right now that will end this madness forever. What can be done, and how, when we have our own  problems going on– very small problems, now I realize, but problems that demand our attention all the same?

We can pray, and we have done, as we always have for the past thousands of years. And we can take it farther by being kind. 

Kindness! Not a month after moving to a new country did I realize that it’s one of the most important things in the world. If you’re kind, your kindness will protect you like armor and people will be kind to you. That’s the goal, at least. Sometimes if doesn’t work out, but hey, at least you were the kind one in the situation. If you’re kind, there’s no way you can lose. Yes, I understand sometimes it can be hard to be kind. But what’s even more emotionally exhausting is to be hateful. It’s like leaving the engine of your car on overnight. Isn’t that energy better spent on doing good and being good?

Here’s what I know: Bad things have happened. Things we could not stop and things that cannot be taken back. Things that have come about because of reasons I cannot even fathom to understand. So what do we do now? 

I guess we do good. 

I guess we be kind. And I promise to be, I promise to try. I will be good and I will be kind, and tolerant, and generous, and helpful, and respectful, and I will create where others do nothing but destroy. It will be a small string of actions when compared to the large, heavy chain of events brought about by extremism and aggression and greed, but I have to believe it will help. And I have to believe that I am not alone. I will do all of these things to make up for atrocities which I am not guilty of. What happened was not our fault; what happens next is our responsibility. 

You’re probably thinking, ‘so that’s your brilliant idea? Be good?’ It kind of sounds naive and idealistic. But this is the most realistic way I can think of to combat a force that has its roots in cruelty and violence. After all, ‘Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.’ So for every tragedy that occurs, we need to show love and kindness in equal amount. We can’t change people’s minds, convince them not to kill for something they believe in. It just doesn’t work. But what does work is when we take responsibility for ourselves and promise I’m not going to hide in the darkness, I will be the friggin’ light.  

So, listen up, bad guys. You know that unforgivable sh*t you just pulled off? This, our kind retaliation, is the opposite. When you do bad, we’ll do better. And nothing in the world will ever rob us of our right to do the right thing. 

Sab (and sister) Do Halloween 2015

It’s one of my most favorite times of the year! Even if things are different, being our first Halloween in Australia and spending it without the usual dear friends we spent it with, my sister and I were determined to celebrate as per our usual traditions. Which includes pumpkin carving! Which usually means I’m the only one who carves the pumpkins despite having Mum having gotten one for each of us.
These are time lapses of our putting on Sugar Skull makeup (influenced by Dia de los Muertes, which is celebrated today, November 1) and the aforementioned pumpkin carving, set to ‘Live Life’ by Jesse and Joy from The Book of Life soundtrack (the movie which tbh started this whole ‘paint your face like a pretty dead thing’ fascination) in one very fast-paced, not-very-well-cut 50-second mini-vid (that’s a lot of hyphens) that captures our first Halloween in Australia. 

Trailer Review: Marvel’s Jessica Jones (or Sab, Don’t You Review Anything Besides Marvel Trailers) 

I know what you must be thinking. Another Marvel Cinematic trailer? Star Wars: The Force Awakens drops their full trailer too and you don’t say jack about it? Jeez, Sab, don’t you review anything else?

I know, I know, people! And I promise I will review other trailers when I get the time– or when they grab my attention. But I promise you this one is worth it.

Aaaaaayt, so, listen up, because things are about to get serious. The first full trailer for Marvel’s Jessica Jones has dropped, and it begins to reveal a handful of things about the plot and where we find the titular character when the series begins. Being a lesser known character, Jessica requires a special introduction– after losing her family in a car accident involving a chemical truck, from which she gained the powers of super strength, invulnerability and flight (what I like to call the Superheroes Basic Starter Pack) Jessica Jones tried a brief stint as a superheroine, but eventually quit to become a private investigator. She went on to become a member of the Avengers alongside husband Luke Cage, who is also introduced in this series (squeeeee!!!) One other character she’s connected to is the Purple Man, a supervillain who can control minds– and as revealed in the trailer, he’s made Jessica do some very bad things. And he never really has left her.

So the trailer provides a really interesting first look at that, setting up Jessica’s life as she tries to make her way outside the influence of the bad guy (played by Doctor Who fan favorite David Tennant!) and keeping other people from falling under his spell. One thing the MCU does pretty well is envision and establish how all these crazy superhero concepts would happen in real, current life, and they proved it more than ever in their first Netflix feature, Daredevil (which I swear to God is so great and literally everything I never knew I wanted.) The concept of mind control in the real world is honestly dark and terrifying, and it looks like they’re not going to shy away from exposing the raw psychological effects it has on the main character. What I’m more interested in is how she’ll overcome them, help others and win back her own agency (ever the struggle of the female protagonist!) without losing herself in the end.

I never would have thought of Krysten Ritter to play Jessica, but seeing as I never had anyone particular in mind, I’m stoked to see what she’ll bring to the character and what kind of dynamic she’ll have with Luke prior to their romance. Of course, throwing David Tennant into the mix as the villain is another reason to give this series a good look. It’s also incredibly refreshing to have a second Marvel series with a female lead (shoutout to Agent Carter) this time in a more serious, dark setting. And of course, all this is going to lead up to The Defenders series! But in between, would it be too much to ask for Daredevil and Jessica to cameo in each others’ shows?

Marvel’s Jessica Jones goes up on Netflix November 20th!