Browsing Tag


Writing Now

Miki and Ana’s Twenty Questions

In Songs to Get Over You, Ana suggests that she and Miki get to know each other better by playing Twenty Questions. Now I don’t know the actual questions you’d find if you get this game, but as Ana said, the rules are pretty simple: 1. You answer all the questions, and 2. The questions don’t have to end at 20.

So here I’m sharing with you Miki and Ana’s version of the game. I’ve put down my own answers (feel free to ignore them, haha), and I thought it would be fun if you answer them too. Tag me?

Okay, GO!

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Music Dance and Lyrics Writing Now

Soundtrack to Get Over You

When I was putting this soundtrack together, I wasn’t really thinking of my writing music, because most days there really is no such thing. Sure I’d listen to a few songs when I take a break–nothing like Alex Turner‘s voice in my ears to resuscitate dying creative batteries. And sure I’d have a song playing inside my head, but that’s not the same as having one blaring out of the speakers, is it?

I guess what I’m trying to say is that these songs existed around my writing time with Miki, rather than within it (if that makes sense without sounding too New Age-y). I guess these would be some of the stuff Miki would’ve listened to in the Songs to Get Over You timeline of his life. So if by any chance you wanted to hear music that plagued the head of a friendzoned boy, by all means scroll down and hit play.

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Music Dance and Lyrics Writing Now

Soundtrack of our Breakup

My second baby Songs of Our Breakup is out! *jumpshot* I’ve been hearing lovely things from the handful of people who’ve read it, and one common comment is that the book needs a soundtrack. Well, it kind of does have a soundtrack. Unofficially, that is.

Writing for me usually requires a vacuum. But sometimes, writing requires a playlist.

It made sense that I needed music to write a story about an indie rock band, taking on the task of penning lyrics for the first time ever. I was ambitious, I know. But it was super fun. The words came to me at the oddest moments. The lyrics to Slipstream for one, got into my head while I was waiting for the train at Ayala Station. By the time I got off at Quezon Avenue, the song’s first draft was complete.

The point is sometimes we need noise. A pounding drumbeat, a metallic guitar riff, or just some good old rock and roll.

Below are some (vintage) songs that accompanied me while I was deep inside my writer’s hole for Songs of Our Breakup.

Click, shuffle, and repeat.

The Script. Man on the Wire.

The Strokes. You Only Live Once

Sandwich. Masilungan

Sandwich. In Case of Fire

Eraserheads. Kailan

Ed Sheeran. The A Team

John Mayer. Slow Dancing in a Burning Room

The Killers. Shot At The Night

Maroon 5. Beautiful Goodbye

Arctic Monkeys. Bigger Boys and Stolen Sweethearts.

Muse. Starlight

Video credits to owners.

Writing Now

What I Did When I Realized I Can’t Be a Rock Goddess

I dreamed of being one once. I got my dad to buy me an acoustic guitar, and I brought it along to school to learn the chords to Leaving on a Jetplane and Ako’y Sayo, Ika’y Sakin. Today, I still know the intro to Parokya ni Edgar‘s Harana. But that’s the most it amounted to, really. I quickly learned that I preferred watching other people play, mesmerized by how their fingers made love to the guitar. Soon my humble acoustic instrument was passed along at school, borrowed by my more talented and persevering classmates. They may not have grown up to be rock gods, but they did learn to play more than the intro to Harana.

So I was left with the dream, which transformed into an active daydream. The daydream sprouted characters, and eventually, a story.

Jill is the lead vocalist of the indie rock band Trainman. She also plays guitar–rhythm and lead, depends on the song, depends on how she, Kim, and Miki decided. They usually played it by ear, specially during live shows at Commute Bar.

Kim is Jill’s ex-boyfriend, the one she has been with for seven years since she was fourteen. The one who broke her heart just two months ago and hasn’t looked at her properly since. That’s a hard job to do, since they share the stage nearly every night.

Miki is Jill’s best friend, and he says that every breakup has a three-month probation period. Jill is on the last month of hers and Miki is patiently keeping her company.

Shinta is a hot Japanese celebrity. He is also Jill’s what-are-you-having-for-breakfast, call-me-if-you-can, cross-ocean friend. Now he is here, physically present, and together he and Jill go through old lyrics, vivid memories, walks in the rain, and bottles of beer. Together they try to answer the question: what do you do when forever ends?

Obviously, I daydream a lot.

You can share my daydream, Songs of Our Breakup, soon 🙂


Photography by Mark Christopher Bayot, featuring Ace Tria.