Widget courtesy of the talented Iphigene.

We have just recently launched our new bimonthly theme “Festival of Asian Literature and the Immigrant Experience.” As such, we are excited to share with you the group of people who would be our featured Guests here for May-June.

Meet the Storyteller: Candy Gourlay

Candy Gourlay – click on the image to be taken to the websource.

We are very proud to feature award-winning Filipina author Candy Gourlay who was the recipient of the Crystal Kite Award in Europe for her novel Tall Story which was also shortlisted for 11 children’s book prizes including the Blue Peter Prize, the Waterstone’s and the Branford Boase and nominated for the Carnegie Medal.

I am excited to read Candy’s book and I am also looking forward to meeting her during the Asian Festival of Children’s Content here in Singapore.

Academic Nook: Dr. Carmelita Ballesteros

Dr. Carmelita Ballesteros is a former colleague of mine at the National Institute of Education in Singapore. Currently, she is now based in Manila and doing some teaching and consultancy services. She was our featured Storyteller a year ago (click here to be taken to my interview with Tita Carmel, as I fondly call her), and it brings me such great pleasure to have her now as our featured Academic. Here is Tita Carmel’s bio:

Dr. Carmelita Cochingco-Ballesteros is the Director of Bl. Teresa Lang-Ed Consultancy Services. She has worked as a freelance language and educational consultant through the years; in particular, with the St. Paul Education Apostolate. She brings with her almost 40 years of expertise in teaching language, literature, and education.

Photo with Tita Carmel at East Coast Park, Singapore. From L-R: Myka my daughter, me, Carmelita

Born and raised in Batangas by parents from Nueva Ecija, she graduated from the Cabanatuan West Elem. School, Nueva Ecija High School, and Araullo University. She earned her Ph.D. in Literature from the University of Santo Tomas, Manila in 1991. She wrote three editions of “Spoken English for Filipinos” published by REX Book Store. From 2000-2010, she taught at Da-Yeh University, Taiwan; SEAMEO Regional Language Centre, Singapore; and at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. When she came home after 10 years, she taught at De La Salle University-Manila in 2011. 

Featured Photographers: Elena Yamamoto Flores and Joshua Formentera

For the first time, we are going to have a Featured Photographer for our Photo Journal section here in GatheringBooks. It is with excitement and pleasure that I welcome a soul sister of mine, Elena Yamamoto Flores to our site.

My dear Missy, as I call her, used to be my roomie/officemate when we were still both teaching in the Department of Psychology at the University of the Philippines, Diliman. She is a kindred and one of the people I hold very dear to my heart.

Here is her bio:

Being more comfortable behind the camera, Elena has taken snap shots of her world since grade school. She started with a simple double-exposure camera then progressed to a SLR—both gifts from her father. Elena has always considered herself as the official “unofficial” photographer. These are some moments in her life.

My soul sister and I many moons back.

I am also excited to be sharing a few of the photographs of a good friend Joshua Formentera whose exhibit in Berlin “Life at Manila Bay” we blogged about hereJoshua has been very kind and generous enough to share a few of those photos that are presently exhibited in Berlin here in GatheringBooks. How fun is that! The exhibit is ongoing until 15 June 2012.

Illustrator’s Sketchpad/Arts Corner: Archie Geotina

I am a proud teacher because I would be sharing the work of one of my babies from the Philippines.

Taken from Archie’s Facebook Page

Archie Geotina used to be a student of mine and I am glad to see him making such a huge name for himself in the Arts Scene, particularly in graffiti art. He has also illustrated a children’s book – something that we’d definitely want to know more about.

Here is Archie’s bio:

Archie Geotina aka Chichimonster (alias given to him) or “Chi as he is most commonly known in the industry” is a multi disciplinary – self taught artist from Manila, Philippines.
He does not like writing about himself. He is one of the founders of the Graffiti Crew known as KST which was started in 2008. He has helped launch graffiti events and competitions attended by hundreds of street art and art lovers alike. He was Creative Director of Blackbook Design, This was a blog turned counter culture and design space that provided designs for clothing and creative direction for productions a well as designing for the in house brand. In Blackbook they also curated and supported locally made products and talents. He is also BOSS of Head Plus Garments, a clothing manufacturing company.

It warms my heart knowing that I am surrounded by such creative energies and so many bright, talented, free-spirited, highly artistic individuals. We are truly privileged to have this nook in cyberspace to share their works here with you until end of June.

Lots of things happening this month and the next. How about you? What are some of your featured events in the coming weeks? 

Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

9 comments on “Featured Guests for May-June in GatheringBooks

  1. weordkrasa

    am so proud to learn that there are so many Filipinos showcasing their creativity abroad. Mabuhay!


  2. Pingback: Photo Journal/ Weekly Photo Challenge: Blue «

  3. Wow, this looks like it will be an interesting month of featured guests in Asian Literature! Look forward to the posts. Loved the Blue photo. For some reason I couldn’t see all of the photos — a few squares were blank.


    • Hi Pat, it could be the browser? I’m using Safari, and I could see all the photos. Thanks for letting me know. Are you using Internet explorer?


      • Yes. First time I’ve had trouble on your site. Also have Firefox and Chrome.


        • Hmmm… Will check out the photos as well. It could be the case that the files are quite heavy too, thus the difficulty in IE. I hardly ever use my windows-based PC and laptop so I couldn’t really tell. Will investigate. 🙂


  4. Great post! 🙂 I am getting something ready to send you on this topic!


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