Brewed Thoughts: 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Blog Tour Thanks + Holiday Greetings

First off, I'd like to thank everyone who participated in The Real Score + In Over Her Head blog tour from the organizer, Dia, to the gracious book bloggers, and the amazing people who joined the giveaway. Congrats to Henley, the winner of my awesome swag bag. I'll be sending your prize once the courier resumes business operations. :)

I'd also like to thank the people who've bought, read, and reviewed my book! It's been such a great year for me, and your support is a huge part of this gratitude in my heart. I'd like to wish you all a very Happy Holidays! Here's to the coming year filled with more great surprises!

Photo from

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Real Score Blog Tour: Author Interview

Music has been a central theme in The Real Score, with no less than a boy band as part of the cast. Read on about the author's thoughts on music, fangirling (yay!), and some deets on the sequel novel!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Real Score Blog Tour: Excerpt Reveal

Welcome to today's blog stop (and my first time to join a blog tour) for The Real Score!

Just a brief note: The author and I were classmates from Mina V. Esguerra's #romanceclass (and we have a common friend...small world indeed!).

About The Book

 The Real Score by Kesh Tanglao
Paperback Order (PHL only)
Caitlin's friendship with Marcus, the de facto frontman of the world's biggest boy band, Gezellig, has long been an object of scrutiny by almost everyone--their friends and families, the media, and his fans--ever since they "went public" a couple of years back. Who wouldn't be interested? She was a nobody, catapulted into the limelight of his fame when he struck an unusual friendship with her.

To both Caitlin and Marcus, what they have is a "perfect little thing." But then something comes along and threatens it.

In a no-holds-barred interview, will they finally be forced to settle the score?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Update: In Over Her Head Blog Tour Schedule

Things have been really busy for me work and writing-wise, but nevertheless, I'm so excited to have a week-long blog tour on December 15-21 for In Over Her Head, courtesy of the awesome Dia at Book Junkie Joint!

Head on over to these amazing blogs and catch the giveaway that comes with the tour! :) Here's a complete schedule:

Edit: This post will be updated to include links to the blog entries. :)

December 15

My Book Musings
Cinderella Stories
The Belle of a Boulevard

December 16

Not Just Silly Thoughts
Scattered in the Universe (Book Review)
The Great Big Jump
Book Junkie Joint 

December 17

The Enigma of Herself
The Belle of a Boulevard

December 18

The Enigma of Herself
Citizen Judie
Books are my Lovers
Cinderella Stories

December 19

Publishing in Pajamas
It’s a Wonderful Book World
The Girl Behind the Stories

December 20

Citizen Judie
I Am Krissy
The Belle of a Boulevard 

December 21

Amour Pour Cadeaux (Excerpt Reveal + Giveaway)
Rhythmic Readings
La Bella Vita
Cinderella Stories

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

ReaderCon Recap + Invitation

A unique approach to the Freedom Wall. Also, Nicholas Park as a favorite author.

ReaderCon finally happened last Saturday and I had a blast! Though this was technically my second time to attend the event, but it was a first for me on the following:

#romanceclass class pic with our books
  • I was part of an exhibitor group. The #romanceclass had a booth where we sold the print copies of our novels as well as the ebook bundle. Our mentor, Mina V. Esguerra was also there to sell copies of her latest books, Welcome to Envy Park and Playing Autumn (part of the Rock Gods of Romance ebook bundle).
  • I've never been inside the Ateneo school grounds until that day. And the Rizal Library. I probably wouldn't slack off in my MA thesis if I had that kind of library facilities at my disposal.

Panel discussions were insightful and fun!
I also had a great time participating in panel discussions and learning from speakers about everything reading/publishing/writing-related. It was also a great experience to meet and interact with book readers, especially those who bought our books and looked around our booth (special shout out to Ciela who bought a paperback copy of my book!). Thank you to everyone who attended ReaderCon and those who took the chance to buy and read our self-published works.

For the curious, we are still selling the ebook bundle for P320. That's a whopping 8 books for an awesome price!

#romanceclass at BLTXIV

Photo from The Curious Couch
We're also joining this Saturday's (December 14) small press expo, Better Living Through Xeroxography (BLTX). The event is from 9am to 5pm at the Lopez Museum, Benpres Building in Ortigas. It's free to the public! Local zine creators, self-published writers (that's us!) and crafters will be there so you can also do your Christmas shopping at the event.

See you there!

Friday, December 6, 2013

ReaderCon Tomorrow!

That's right! ReaderCon is finally pushing through tomorrow, December 7, at the Rizal Library of the Ateneo de Manila University. The #romanceclass writers will have a booth at the event where we will sell our individual books and the ebook bundle. Personally, I am psyched as this is the first event where I'm going to do a promote my book and meet current and potential readers.

More than just selling books, I'm also excited to participate in the panels and discussions facilitated by authors and readers. Plus, other book sellers and exhibitors will be selling awesome titles and book paraphernalia. My wallet is ready.

Hope you can drop by the Rizal Library tomorrow and join in the fun!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Book Blog Tour + Updates

I'm having a blog tour for my book happening on December 15-21, organized by Dia of Book Junkie Blog Tours. Sign up if you want to read and review In Over Her Head on your blogs. I will also have a giveaway during the tour.

My dirty notebook where I tallied my daily word count progress.

As of this writing, I'm already at 55k words in my NaNoWriMo project. I've reached 50k words last November 21, but the story hasn't reached its end as of late. I'll probably continue to write even beyond today so I can start working on revisions in January.

I'm really pleased to say that Reverse NaNoWrimo has worked well for me that I got to reach the 50k word mark earlier than usual. I went a few words beyond the daily suggested quota, and I've established a regular writing schedule throughout the duration of November. The only downside was that I began to lose steam after reaching 50k words, and I've given in to the luxury of taking a break from writing after November 21. I still think it's a great technique to finish NaNoWriMo, and I'd definitely use this in next year's attempt.


Me and my co-writers from #romanceclass are coming up with a YA/coming-of-age anthology set in a fictional Philippine high school, Luna East Arts Academy. We're hoping to release the print edition in December, so watch this space for more updates!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A Little Bit of Positivity

Did a little bit of Wordle on my blog, and I found a lot of positive words associated with most of my post. And best of all...books! :)

I'm excited to announce that I'm already at work on my next book, and I'm writing all 50k words in one month! I've been joining NaNoWriMo for five years and this is the first time that I'm hoping to finish with the ultimate plan to have the manuscript published (after major revisions, of course). To do all that, I'm going to do the Reverse NaNoWriMo thingee to help me get through Week 3 and 4 slumps. I have my fingers (and toes) crossed that I hit the finish line by the end of the month. Wish me luck! :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Order In Over Her Head Paperback Edition!

Awesome news! I'll be receiving print copies of my book next week and this means you can already pre-order from me! :) I'm including a cute bookmark to go with your book copy, but wait, there's more! The first five people to pre-order and pay for their copies will get something special from me. Fill up the order form and let's get started!

Monday, October 28, 2013

In Over Her Head: How to Download

Hey, folks! Today is the big day! You can now download my book, In Over Her Head, in your e-reader, smartphones, and tablets. Here are the links:

Amazon (for Kindle and the Kindle app)
Smashwords (for other e-readers and e-reading apps)

Hope you can take the time to download, read the story, and tell me what you think! The print edition is coming up soon! I'll post more deets once I have it in my hands (and once I start chanting "my precioussssss").

Enjoy! :)

Friday, October 25, 2013

Cover Reveal and Then Some

I did mention previously that I'm coming up with a book sometime soon, and I'm so psyched to announce that I'm releasing my contemporary romance novella, In Over Her Head, on October 28 via Amazon and Smashwords!

Now that I've finally hurdled the editing phase and finalized the cover design, I'm ecstatic to share this amazing cover artwork by my friend, YK Marquez. There's a story behind this fabulous piece of work that I'll be sharing in a separate blog post, but in the meantime, I hope you're just excited as I am to read the book. I'll be posting the download links in the next few days. For those of you who want to have a print version, I'll set up a pre-order form so I can take note of everything. 

Thanks and hope you'll get the chance to read it once the book is available! :)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Another Year, Another Lease on Life

Thank you to friends and family who remembered me last Sunday. I am deeply grateful for your love and support on such an important occasion. Here's to another year of shenanigans! :)

Friday, October 18, 2013

[Week 2] Filipino Friday: Kids and Books

Week 2 of the Filipino Friday meme is here!

What were your favorite books as a kid or while you were growing up? Do you still read children’s books? If you could give your younger self a book to read, what would it be?

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Plug: Pre-order Welcome to Envy Park

Plugging this amazing news from the awesome Mina V. Esguerra about the upcoming launch of her new, self-published contemporary romance novella, Welcome to Envy Park.

Cover photo from author's blog

Moira Vasquez is a doer. A planner. A get-up-and-goer. At twenty-two, she left her hometown to work in Singapore, to satisfy a need to travel as well as give her savings account a boost. Five years later and she's back in Manila, with a shiny new apartment to her name, but no job, no career, no boyfriend. She meets Ethan Lorenzo, the quiet hunk of an IT consultant on the ninth floor of her condo building, and he's a welcome distraction during this period of having absolutely nothing going on in her life.

But she has a plan -- of course she does -- and this is just a short layover on the way to the next country, the next job, the next big thing. Or will she be missing out on something great that's already there?
Pre-order the ebook on Kobo (P43.15!)
Pre-order the paperback (P325). Regular price of P350 starts on November 5, 2013
Pre-order links for Barnes & Noble and Apple iBooks coming soon* Amazon price will be $0.99 on release day, October 30.

Read the preview on Wattpad

I'm always excited to know when Mina comes out with a new story, and this is no exception. The cover alone piques the curiosity and knowing Mina's storytelling skills, this one is going to be a great read. I'm already looking forward to October 30!

Note: Mina spearheaded the #romanceclass group with which I'm part of. Prior to joining the group, I've always been a huge fan of her work and have read all her books.

Friday, October 11, 2013

[Week 1] Filipino Friday: Hello, Reader

The Filipino ReaderCon's Filipino Fridays meme is back! Here's this week's topic:

Hello, Reader! Let’s get to know you, and more importantly, what kind of reader are you? Laura E. Kelly released an infographic about Reader species — under what Domain/Class/Family/Genus/Species do you fall under? Give examples, and feel free to talk about why you belong to that species. Who knows, you may find readers in your own genus. ;)

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Review: Trese: Stories from the Diabolical (Vol. 1)

Welcome to The Diabolical!
My name is Hank. I'll be your bartender for tonight.
What will it be? Don't tell me. I know exactly what you want to drink.

So, what's on your mind? You have a story to tell?
You've come to the right place. I've got some interesting stories as well.

Have you heard the one about the ghost who walked in the bar?
The one who kept coming back, waiting for the arrival of that certain someone?

What about the guy who had coffee with his dead girlfriend?
Or the story of the spectral Christmas carolers?

And then there's that strange tale of all those senior citizens who watched the last full show and never came out.

No? Haven't heard those? Well, have another drink and I'll tell you all about it.

I just love Budjette Tan and KaJo Baldisimo's Trese graphic novels. I think it's brilliant how they are able to do a re-telling of Philippine folklore that resounds to people from almost all age groups. This time around, they have released Trese: Stories from the Diabolical, which features ghostly tales as told by Hank Sparrow, The Diabolical's resident bartender. 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

I came, I saw, I pitched, I scored!

I can't believe I crammed for something as important as a story pitch contest! I'm just glad I had my 2012 NaNoWriMo manuscript ready (well yeah, the story is done, but I haven't started on editing at all), so all I had to do was write a strong and compelling pitch to sell my material to the publisher-judges.

Oh boy, I never expected that preparing for a pitch could be so nerve-racking. From finding good resources on how to write a winning spiel for my story, finding an internet cafe to have my work printed (and making the cut-off period), and finally, to waiting for my turn to be interviewed by the three publishers, today was definitely a test on staying calm and collected.

I honestly didn't think I'd make it, but when I got one business card after the other, I had to control the urge to jump from my seat and do a crazy dance. I scored all three publishers! That's a step closer to getting a book deal with local publishing houses.

I'm over the moon! :)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Book Sale Alert: Reaping Me Softly

More book sales! Yay!

I've always been a staunch supporter of Filipino authors, and Kate Evangelista is no exception. I can't remember exactly how I got to know about this gem of an author, but I was thrilled to know that she's been making waves in the international scene as a writer of paranormal romance.

Here's the good news: the ebook version of Reaping Me Softly is on sale for only $0.99 in Amazon and Barnes & Noble. This is all in preparation for the sequel release of Unreap My Heart on September 17. Talk about a steal! I'm excited for book 2 as well (along with other upcoming releases of Kate's work).

Go grab a copy now!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Goodbye Money, Hello New Books!

Photo from NBS Facebook page
Since I had a Kindle, I rarely bought physical books (except for those written by Filipino authors) due to storage reasons. In as much as I love holding and reading hard copies of books, the Kindle has helped me discover more fun reads, not to mention that I can store hundreds in just one device. But all practicality reasons flew out the window when National Book Store announced a massive sale in all its branches. 

So what's an avid reader supposed to do? Hoard books, of course! 

Monday, August 26, 2013

ReaderCon 2013 in November

Logo from the ReaderCon website
I had a blast in last years Filipino ReaderCon and I'm so psyched it's happening again this year!
I can't say enough that we need to have more book/reader-centric conventions aside from the MIBF. What's great about the ReaderCon is that it's organized by avid bookworms gathering publishers and the reading public in one venue to celebrate and support reading communities. Talking about books makes my heart giddy and there's nothing like spending an entire day with books, writers, readers, and publishers.

One of my favorite parts in the program is the Filipino Reader's Choice Awards. I've nominated some of my favorite titles and I do hope they win this year! If you haven't voted yet, do it right now because the polls will be open until September 6 only.

See you in November and I hope this year's ReaderCon will be even more amazing than last year's.

Dear Universe...

Image from The Creative Penn
I'm (independently) publishing a novel that I wrote a couple of months ago. I never thought I'd get to this stage where I'd really pursue this thing, but I'm very much excited! I just hurdled the first of the many revision with my editor, and I'm all for positive vibes. I want to finish all editing stuff by next month, and hopefully publish by October. It's probably going to be out on Amazon/Smashwords first as I need to save up on funds for the print version. But what the hey, I'm finally getting there! 

Stay tuned as I'll definitely make some noise in this blog as I get closer to the big day. I'm really psyched to get this out!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Back to Blogging

Image from Independent Fashion Bloggers
I've been thinking about going back to blogging for the past few days and one of those things I wasted time on was looking for a new layout (new look, new beginning?). I wanted something minimalist and I've tried to install/uninstall layout files to no avail. I just figured to hell with it, I'll just use Blogger's old templates and be done with it. The challenge would be to try to post something consistently and to not fall back into ningas kugon.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Green mango ice cream with bagoong

The stuff every Filipino's craving
I first encountered this amazing thing about green mango ice cream with bagoong (shrimp paste) from one of my friends who went to Sebastian's Artisan Ice Cream. And when I went to Katipunan yesterday and saw Sebastian's, I knew my curiosity had to be sated. For Php 140, a single serve of the sour mango ice cream topped with warm bagoong is just pure bliss. I love how the contrast of sourness and saltiness mix well together in one perfect blend. Sebastian perfectly recreated the Pinoy snack we all love. Although I have to say that one serving is more than enough. But if you're extremely craving for mangoes and bagoong, this certainly hits the spot!