Thursday, November 24, 2016

ID?

anabelle gubuan

I saw this being posted recently by someone I know quite too well. She's bully, hostile, curses a lot, curses people a lot, even her own children she makes it a habit to curse them. She's called someone "a lying cow" but I know too many of her own lies. She hates "mistresses" with a passion, but she was once (or maybe twice, or thrice or even more) one. I cannot enumerate here one by one all the things that she did wrong, but to sum it all up, I cannot see in her life that she is living it like she is a child of God. Sometimes telling people "I am a child of God" can be a convenient way of claiming righteousness, that our faith/belief in God makes us better than the rest. We are all sinners. Not one of us here on earth is as blameless as Jesus is. Everyday we stumble, we make mistakes, we make wrong choices. But we can always learn to be better and let God change us. If we truly seek God in our life, and if we truly believe we are a "child of God", we surrender to his loving correction. Being a child of God means living the gospel, being able to bless others by your presence, your speech, your behavior. It's not enough that you wear your "I am a child of God" ID and go about hurting people.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Too many sunsets

anabelle gubuan

Every time you left me, my world came to a halt. But what I would actually feel was that it was the end of everything. Hope was something too scary to even hold on to. There was something about it which I couldn’t trust. Hope brought me so much disillusionment and pain. I would rather deal with each pain, each blow that your leaving has caused me, each nightmare. I had to deal with all this whether I liked it or not. But you know what, it somehow made me stronger, more resilient. It made me understand pain more and I realized these things have to be embraced and not resisted. The more that we resist it, the more that it gets to us, the more it becomes intense. Yes, I have accepted pain, thanks to you. I have become familiar to it, less scared. There were too many sunsets that I have mourned. And they will not cease to make me grieve the nights. But I am more aware of it now. They’re part of how I learn to constantly let go. - Anabelle Badilla

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Paying it forward

I gave campus journalism training and writing workshop to these guys a few weeks back. So nice to see them again yesterday sharing with me the news that they won in four categories at the recent Philippine Information Agency's basic campus journalism seminar. As a parent myself, it is a joy to see young people living out their gifts the best way they can. 

anabelle gubuan

anabelle gubuan

anabelle gubuan

anabelle gubuan

anabelle gubuan


How to Write a Good Short Story   
by Anabelle Badilla-Gubuan

A short story, simply put, is like a shorter version of a novel. It has the same elements as a novel has:  the characters, the setting, the plot, the conflict, and the resolution.From my own experience as a writer, though, a short story will require more creativity from the author because given the limitations of the number of words, you have to make sure your readers are satisfied and truly impressed.

Indeed, how do you impress your readers? A short story is a work of fiction or imagination but then again, just like any other stories long or short, you can always get inspirations from the reality around you. What people are looking for usually is how they can relate to the characters, their pains, their fears, their triumphs and their dreams. Look around you and everything, everyone, has a story to tell: the beggar in the street, the lonesome willow tree in the middle of a park, the quarrelling couple in the subway, the strict librarian with very thick eyeglasses. The list is endless. But before you can get your hands in these stories, you have to remember a few important things.

1.  Have you read enough short stories?
Reading will help you sharpen your mind and develop your skill as a short story writer. It doesn’t mean that you will be copying  the idea of others, though. The more short stories you read, the more ready you will become to take on the task because it will build up your excitement and encourage you to actually do it.

2.  Outline your story.
When you’re ready to start writing, you can now take your pen and paper and outline your story. List down the elements I have mentioned above and make notes next to these elements:
The characters: each character has to leave an impression that will make the reader remember them long after they have finished reading your story. Make sure you don’t overwhelm your readers with too many characters. Some short, compelling stories take over the world by just two or three characters.

The setting:  Describe the scene, don’t describe the picture.

The plot: it has to have the element of surprise. Putting a twist somewhere near the end always works.

The conflict: “Human interest” is the aspect of a story that interest people because it resonates with their own experiences. This always keeps the reader riveted to their seats simply because they can relate to what the characters undergo in the story.

The resolution: keep in mind that a good story has an element of justice. It doesn’t have to be a traditional happy-ever-after kind of ending, but make sure you make something right out of the conflict you have presented. Some stories can go on and on, stuck in the conflict of the whole story and it ends badly there.

3.  Strong title, equally strong ending.
Your title must represent your whole story but in a way that will just give a hint to your readers. It is a come on, like teacups placed in the front porch table. But mind you, making a compelling title is as challenging as coming up with an ending just as good. Your ending has to make your story come in full circle.

4.  Stick to your story.
When there is a temptation to stray, to back to your outline and check your elements one by one. It will keep you grounded. 

5. Practice, practice, practice.
Capture your reader’s attention. Imagine, visualize, dream, make it up. Most of all experiment. It is only in trying out new things all the time that the best writers learn and become best sellers.


Monday, October 17, 2016

Be Happy!

gubuan

I have always prayed, begged, asked the Lord to grant you a life of happiness, peace, success, and that he will give you everything your heart desires. It is still my prayer. After all these years, after all these pains, it is still my prayer. I believe that you deserve that and I believe God will grant my prayers. Be happy now. Stop letting the enemy pull you back from which part of your journey you've reached already. All the enemy wants is for those who choose the Lord to choose otherwise. Because he wants all of us to be miserable. Will you keep allowing him to make you miserable? And make others around you miserable? It would be such a sad life if that would be so. You don't deserve a sad, lonely life, do you? 

Are you truly happy?

gubuan




Tuesday, September 20, 2016

dangerous

Bitter or better

badilla

"People, they tend to judge you based on what they know about your past." Recently heard this from someone and it resonated with me right away. Most of the difficulties I've been facing lately are born out of the fact that I have been judged. I made choices in my life, and some these are not really nice choices at least as far as other's principles and beliefs are concerned. Well, the choices I made are mine. I always make a conscious effort not to drag others into my misery. I try as much as I can to take it all in bearing in mind that others have got nothing to do with the consequences of what I do. Bearing in mind most of all that these pains will eventually make be stronger and better and will allow me to be there for others, too, who are broken like me. Who is not broken anyway? Even the ones who had a sheltered childhood, they have in one way or another, some kind of brokenness. My past will not define my future. I am nearing the point of my journey where I can stand tall and proud. I can't wait to say, "I made it." 

worth



Wednesday, August 17, 2016

I am a writer, and I can pin you down with my poetry

stars
I am a writer, you are not. You do not have the eloquence of words, they can only stream from a soul that knows a lot about darkness. All you know is how to bask in the sunlight because in there you feel alive. You're scared of the dark. It reflects your emptiness. You do not have the eloquence of words because your brain is a pack of empty cells that know nothing but to blink here and there, every once in a while. You think you're cool, you think you're awesome, you think you're better than the others because you can "speak your mind" out. Really? What does your mind speak about anyway? Trash, trash, nothing but trash. Because first of all, you don't know yourself. You're forever lost. Your identity depends on who accepts you, for the moment. Because people in your life do not stay. Who can stay with an arrogant, all knowing, lost soul?

You see, this is how a writer fights with someone like you. I have plenty of words that hide behind the well laid out poetry of thoughts and emotions that run around like wild rats in a falling off ceiling. These words are well reserved for you. Go on and feign affection. Go on and fake your smile. Go on and pretend there is happiness in your so-called universe. It will not stay long. It will not be there forever. Because the happiness that you call is a smoke from a burnt pile of dead dreams. No, my dear, they're not star dust.

Different roles, different goals


womanI can't remember the last time I felt whole as a woman. Too many different roles I play everyday somehow affects my capacity to love and take care of myself. The battles I have been fighting -- they seem endless -- took so much of my time. What are these battles anyway? Why do they require so much of me? There are times when they overwhelm me I just find myself breaking down, lost, confused and ever so discouraged. Different roles, different battles, different goals. Why can't life be simple? I am a simple person with very simple needs. I am not hard to please. I cry at a sign of a mother bird crying looking for her lost hatchling. Yet I know all these questionings will never end, as long as I live there are always things to wonder about. I just need to step back every once in a while and look at myself, where I am in the midst of all this. I am my own woman, battles and scars, roles  and goals. Nobody can take away my gifts.  Nobody can cause me to stop giving, to stop being gentle, being kind, nobody can stop be from being beautiful as I am. 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

New Beginnings

Indeed He is a God of new beginnings. I started Kwaderno with a clear motivation to help children in need. I invited someone to work with me in the project and it turned out that she got her own "vision" fort the organization. I must say my own values and principles didn't go well with hers. Malice crept in, lies, made up stories. I kept silent all this time keeping in mind that the Lord sees everything.  But God's vindication came right on time. Who can argue with that.  Now Kwaderno is back in my arms, as it is rightfully mine. But I have to keep in my treasure box, everything about it, photos, receipts, certificates, trophies ... oh yes. Trophies. I know they worked hard for it. But nothing we can do. It's not me who wanted them returned :) 

God's ways are indeed mysterious. Kwaderno had to happen to pave the way for Ambit. And yes, that's where I am heading now. 

I praise and thank the Lord for making us worthy of this Ambit experience, an experience of his love, provision, protection, peace, power and mercy. Last May 13-15 was a great affirmation for me.  It was a joy to behold all the volunteers working with passion and love. I didn't experience this in my previous organization. There was a wedge. Something that you can almost feel blocking us so there was no harmony, there was tension looming. With Ambit there is purity in spirit. Everyone was all smiles, just simply happy to be of service. Salamat sa tanan nga volunteers, donors, all who took part to make this project become a reality. May the Lord take care of all your needs and keep you in his love always. From this month onward, Ambit will take on this road to the people and as a channel of all the blessing God will send them, Ambit is ever more ready!/ Anabelle Badilla-Gubuan



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