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“BALAT, BUWAN, NGALAN”
Appearing in ALTERNATIVE ALAMAT
Alternative Alamat is an anthology of short fiction that repurposes Filipino myths and legends into modern, 21st century configurations, that is going to be available in ebook format on December 14.
I was invited by editor Paolo Chikiamco to contribute a piece to it, and thus, my story, “Balat, Buwan, Ngalan (A Myth for the 21st Century)” is contained therein.
Below is the story’s introduction (which also doubles as the writer’s bio), as it appears in the anthology:
Balat, Buwan, Ngalan
(A Myth for the 21st Century)
David Hontiveros was a National Book Award Finalist for Best Comic Book in 1997 for Dhampyr (drawn by Oliver Pulumbarit), and a 2002 Palanca Award Winner (2nd Place in Future Fiction- English Category) for his short story, “Kaming Mga Seroks.” He has three horror/dark fantasy novellas out under the Penumbra imprint, published by Visprint, as well as a digital novel, Pelicula, from Bronze Age Media. His on-going comic book series, Bathala: Apokalypsis, is also available digitally from Flipside. He has had his short fiction, film reviews, articles, and comics appear in several Philippine publications. He has recently adapted Bret Harte (no, not the wrestler) and Edgar Allan Poe (twice!) into comic book form for Graphic Classics. He may be observed online at fiveleggediguana.blogspot.com (where he blathers on about film) and davidhontiveros.com (where assorted bits of his work are housed). He would like to humbly dedicate the story to his four current grandspawn, in chronological order: Gray, Mischa, Chloe, and Sophia, who will keep the flames of his family history burning on, down through the years.
While the Philippines is home to distinct cultural groups, a certain amount of cultural cross-pollination did take place. The results are myths which are variations of the same themes, and characters which appear in more than one culture, or who bear the same name but with an altered form. But, as David says of this story, there is power in words and there is truth in myth. If these characters did exist… which version would be true? Would it matter?
I should point out for those who follow my books and comics that “Balat, Buwan, Ngalan” has very solid ties to some of my past (and future) work.
And among the ten other stories in the anthology is a Trese prose piece by none other than Budjette Tan, as well as lots of kicka$$ art by Mervin Malonzo.
For more on Alternative Alamat, please check here.