Brewed Thoughts: 2015

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

I've Moved!

Hey, guys! I've moved to a new site! I've decided to take this new step so I can seriously pursue my writing and publishing thing. Brewed Thoughts would still be around, although I will not be updating it anymore. Please do visit my new website for the latest news and updates from me. Thank you!

Monday, October 5, 2015

On (Finally) Writing and Releasing That WIP in the Wild

Three years ago, a story idea popped in my head and it's been there ever since It all started with my fascination for Philippine mythology and folklore, perhaps due to all the feels from reading Arnold Arre's graphic novels Mythology Class and After Eden. I've always been curious about the occult and the paranormal, though the only real "dabbling" I ever did with it was to write a story. I'm sure writers have been plagued with the same experience of plot bunnies disturbing their every day thoughts that they just needed to get them written or they'd go stark raving mad. The only way to get the bunnies to at least take a rest was for me to do something about it. So I did some research on lower myths and pantheons, read up on pre-Hispanic life and culture, and watched shows and documentaries until I was able to get the material I needed to start drafting characters and establishing the plot. The result: Bloodline Maharlika.

There's nothing ordinary about Owenn Magpantay the moment awareness seeped through her consciousness. A demi-goddess born from the line of maharlika and Bathala himself, Owenn is the hope for peace between mortal and the divine. But when the god Apolaki decried Bathala's love for humans, Owenn became his ultimate target. Together with her half-sister, the bathaluman Mayari, they travel to present day Manila where Owenn must eventually face the evil of Apolaki with the help of Companions descended from the warrior nobility.

Friday, October 2, 2015

#StrangeLit Story Bundles Are LIVE!

So last July, I signed up for a writing workshop called #StrangeLit facilitated by Mina V. Esguerra and Bronze Age Media, as well as sponsored by Buqo. This was different from the previous workshops of Mina that I've attended, mainly because it's about paranormal and urban fantasy. I have a soft spot for fantasy because it saved my sanity once when I was going through emo stuff back in college. Ever since then, I've been reading one fantasy book after another, and I thought it would be a good challenge to try my hand in writing a story in the said genre. 

History has a way of repeating itself, but I won't bore you with the details. This workshop came at the right time, and I couldn't be more thankful I was part of it. The story that's been in my head for so long has finally seen the light of day.

So, long story short, by September 5 I had a finished novelette and managed to make it through the deadline. My story, Bloodline Maharlika, has been bundled with 9 other stories under a common theme: Incredible Truths. There are 41 finished stories in total, also grouped into themes: Killer Seasons, Fateful Turns, and Darkest Dreams. And the best part is they're now available on Buqo

Photo from Buqo
Incredible Truths ebook bundle where my story is included
I hope you can support us indie authors in getting more people to read and appreciate our work. You can purchase each book bundle at the introductory price of Php 90. Regular price will be Php 250. I'll be announcing more stuff as we go along (like a giveaway, the launch, etc.), but in the meantime I hope you can grab the chance to avail of the ebook bundles. And if you already have, thank you! 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

MIND = BLOWN (Or When We Had a #RomanceClass Read-Along With Theater Pros)

So, I was supposed to do a post for #StrangeLit, but I just need to get this out, now. Haha. I seriously don't know how to begin this blog post. Perhaps this image would better describe things:

GIF via Tumblr

Let me backtrack a bit to tell you about what happened last night. Last month, author Mina V. Esguerra asked the #romanceclass group for a meetup at the end of September for "something special". Sounds cryptic, but exciting! I was adamant to attend at first, because it was right smack in the middle of the work week, not to mention that Manila experienced its first carmageddon a few weeks before September 30th. But by some sheer stroke of luck, my schedule cleared and I was able to leave early and have time to chat with another fellow author.

When everyone else arrived at The Study at the Podium Mall, it felt like a high school reunion of sorts. Beso here, chika was fun reconnecting with fellow authors even if we've been tweeting/chatting with each other online on an almost daily basis. But while waiting for Mina, we were already so stoked for the surprise thing. Then someone mentioned seeing Mina's Instagram post

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Fun Times at the MIBF 2015

Where did the weekend go?

But seriously, I had an awesome weekend attending the 36th Manila International Book Fair. Most of my friends were there on the first day, and I had to sit through endless tweets about how awesome the place was with few attendees and spacious hallways. But when the weekend came, I was raring to go. I arrived early at the venue and was surprised to find a long line as early as 8am. Good thing it was the queue for the international authors' book signings, so I was able to get inside without having to wait that long. 

Saturday was the busiest day for me at the book fair as I took it upon myself to be quick and shop for the books I already planned to get. It was good thinking because when Sunday came, it was hard to navigate around the hall with so many people jostling for space as they browsed and lined up at the cashier. Sunday was more laid back, and thankfully I was able to curb my impulse to buy more books. 

Here are a few photos documenting my awesome MIBF experience:

Stacks of Soul Books at the Bookmark booth.
It looks like they had a lot of copies as they replenished as soon as the pile was depleted.

Monday, September 14, 2015

August Bookish Events

I realize this blog hasn't been updated much, but lately I've been going to a lot of fun bookish events that I absolutely have to talk about. Having started off a fledgling, part-time career in being an author (because priorities), bookish events have been a staple in what little free time I have. 

Tessa Bailey Romance Discussion

Bailey's Babes PH represent!
Author Mina V. Esguerra organized this meet-up with fellow Tessa Bailey fans last August and I was thankful to have been part of this awesome gathering. It was an apt occurrence since it was Mina who introduced me to Tessa's work, and I couldn't be any happier. I love reading romances and it's my most-read genre. Tessa's books are a guilty pleasure and I was more than thrilled to have been in the company of like-minded people. 

Yes, we did talk about the alpha heroes, and was stoked to know there were fellow Bowen fans! Beck came in second place in terms of favorites. What made it even more awesome was the feedback from Tessa herself. I'm really hoping she gets to swing by the Philippines and have a book signing event.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

5 Reasons Why You Should Read The Secret Story of Shy Shelly

The Secret Story of Shy Shelly by Justine Hail
Published by OMF Literature
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Buqo | Flipreads | Google Books | Kobo | iBooks | Add to Goodreads
There were not a lot of stories about Shelly. No one talked about her. No one knew her. She had no friend exept Huey Louie, her pet turtle of five years. One night, Shelly wrote on a paper star: I WISH TO HAVE A REAL FRIEND. Her wish comes true when she easily becomes a part of the group called Butterfly Club. For the first time, Shelly sat in the cafeteria with lunch buddies. But when she becomes the seatmate of the mysterious class outcast Vanna, Shelly also discovers a sweet and patient friend in her. But Vanna could never be part of the Butterfly Club. With friends on opposing sides, Shelly must learn what it means to be a true friend.

The last time I read a middle grade book was when I was in my elementary year and back then, Sweet Valley, Nancy Drew, and Choose Your Own Adventure books were the norm. Fast forward to these current times, I still find a certain joy when I read young adult books, or basically just books for the younger audience. Maybe it makes me live vicariously through the characters, not to mention relive the good 'ol yesteryears.

Monday, May 25, 2015

#buqoYA Perfect Moments Blog Tour

Welcome to the final week of the #buqoYA blog tours and this time I'm featuring the last (but not the least) bundle, Perfect Moments! It's been such an awesome month and the feedback we've been getting about the book bundles have been astounding. Thank you for your continued support! I hope you enjoy the stories included in this bundle and find great reads!

Sometimes you’ll meet your match: at detention, on the badminton court, in a resort hotel in Davao, at a lab, in a foster home, at an epic party. You’ll never know. But always keep your heart ready for that perfect moment. Read these stories and experience the bliss of first love.

Monday, May 18, 2015

#buqoYA Heart Choices Blog Tour

It's the 4th week of the #buqoYA blog tours! Have you been checking out the stories of the previous bundles? I hope you're having a wonderful reading experience so far. We have another week-long tour and this time for the Heart Choices bundle. Get to know more about the six stories in this collection and the authors behind it.

Sometimes it’s hard to choose. Do you stay or do you let go? Should you become friends, more than friends, or stay strangers? Would you risk love for popularity? You’re invited to explore these stories and find out each character’s choice from the heart.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

#buqoYA Finding Fairytales Blog Tour

Welcome to week 3 and my stop for the #buqoYA Finding Fairytales bundle! My story, Fall for Grace, is included in this bundle! But before that, I'd also like to shine the spotlight on my fellow #buqoYA authors who also have stories that will hopefully tickle your fancy. Whether you're rooting for headstrong characters or prefer stories with characters that have a lot of spunk, this is the YA romance bundle for you! 

Don't forget to join my Facebook giveaway (aside from the one at the end of this post) for a chance to win a kawaii swag pack!

We all want the happy ending, the dream come true. But what if it doesn’t happen? How far would you go to get that “ever after?” Would you change who you are? Would you swallow your pride? Is the story really going to be as perfect as you think? Follow the path of these characters and see where they lead.

Monday, May 4, 2015

#buqoYA Sweet Complications Blog Tour

The start of May is already busy as it is, but in a good way. It's my stop for today's blog tour for the #buqoYA Sweet Complications bundle! In this collection you'll find six more Young Adult romance stories to tickle your fancy.

Would you do a set of dares to prove someone wrong? Would you risk your friendship so you can find love? Would you admit your real feelings? There are a lot of complications when it comes to finding love. Get the feels when you read these sweet stories.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

#buqoYA Taking Chances Blog Tour

As part of the month-long blog tour for the #buqoYA, I'd like to introduce you to the stories behind each bundle (thanks to Dianne of Oops! I Read A Book Again for organizing the blog tour). As mentioned, #buqoYA was a product of a writing class with Mina V. Esguerra and sponsored by Buqo. I'm pretty sure there's something in the bundle that would pique your interest, so read on:

#buqoYA 1: Taking Chances
Whether looking for closure, proving their worth, or wondering what happens after a moonlit night, the characters from these stories will invite you to take a chance for love. Will they find what they’re looking for? Or will their hearts get broken? Step into their shoes and find out.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

#buqoYA is LIVE!

From the blog

It's LIVE, folks! The #buqoYA bundles are now available at the Buqo digital store and you can already purchase them from the app. For the uninitiated, Buqo is a digital book store where you can buy ebooks (here's a guide on how to install the app, create an account, and purchase books). 

In case you might ask, the bundles will be exclusively available in the digital store for a certain period. Let's support our local authors by purchasing the books in Buqo (since it's also a book store for the Filipino reader)!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

#buqoYA Blog Tour

Photo from

It's been so busy this first quarter of the year, but I'm really excited to get my writing mojo back after last year's drought. And since I did mention joining a YA writing class in January, I'm equally stoked to be promoting our #buqoYA blog tour! My story, Fall from Grace, is in the bundle Finding Fairytales.

If you have a blog, please do join the blog tour! Our goal is to bring more young adult romance stories and we hope to be diverse and interesting as what's already available in the market.

I'll be featuring excerpts of my #buqoYA co-authors and I hope this will get everyone excited to check them out (and buy them) on Buqo. Let's all support our local authors! :)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The #buqoYA Experience

Photo from #buqoYA classmate Justine Tajonera
To say that the start of 2015 has been busy is the biggest understatement. I know I still have to detail what I've been doing for the past 2 months, but I just want to get this down into writing while I'm still on a high. In December of last year, I signed up to join one of Mina V. Esguerra's classes yet again, this time for a Young Adult writing session sponsored by Buqo, the premier Filipino digital book store. Two things got me so excited to join: