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Showing posts from January, 2020

A glimpse of my short story reading experience and my personal Deal Me In challenge

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I remember someone who asked me what short stories I would recommend for her to read given that, in her words, the short story is not as popular as the other genres. I was at the time ready to steel myself up to defend the literary form I love and enjoy so much. Of course, my argument would have been out of context. Perhaps she was talking from experience or from something she had read or from a global perspective. Instead of sparking a debate, I gave the names of writers whose works I found very memorable, like Filipino writer Estrella Alfon who was an embodiment of a talent that was too advanced for the period she lived in and like 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature winner and Canadian short story writer Alice Munro , because I thought, everyone loves Munro’s works, right? (I know I do.) I cannot remember when I started reading short stories. It just happened. I probably picked up a book and read a short story, perhaps a work by American short story writer O. Henry . Without profou

Joining the Japanese Literature Challenge for the first time

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You may have heard of people who say they had trudged into certain paths because of certain life-changing events, like how a moving speech of a leader can prompt one to take the route of a public servant. Sometimes, it only takes one moment to change a pathway in one’s history. I had a similar experience with Japanese literature . I only heard that Japanese writers have had very good literary yields and yet my interest was tepid at best. Many years ago, I started reading Tokyo: A Biography by Stephen Mansfield, but, despite my profound appreciation for the richness of Japan’s culture and heritage, I remained inattentive to its literature and focused my immersion elsewhere, such as in the works by Agatha Christie and Filipino writers Estrella Alfon and Gilda Cordero-Fernando . This changed. And it’s because of one book: The Hunting Gun by Yasushi Inoue . I bought my copy from a local online seller for two reasons. While other buyers were scrambling to beat each other