SCBWI Philasia presents
“The Filipino Child and
Filipino Children’s Literature”

When : 6 to 9 pm Monday 2008 January 7
Where : Somewhere in Makati, to be announced asap
Host : Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators

Lara Saguisag will explore notions of childhood and
“Filipino-ness” in Philippine literature for children,
and will focus on locally published books. She will
talk about different elements of the book, such as style,
subject choice, book covers, and even cost of books,
and see how texts and illustrations reveal our
conception of children as subjects and readers.

Bio : Lara Saguisag’s most recent book is Children of
Two Seasons: Poems for Young People (Anvil). She also
co-edited Nine Supernatural Stories (UP Press) with
April Yap. Her poems for children received the 2006
New School Writing Program Chapbook Series Award.
She is a Presidential Fellow at Rutgers University,
where she is completing her PhD in Childhood Studies.
She is a founding member of KUTING (Kwentista ng
Mga Tsikiting), a group of writers for children.

This event is open to SCBWI members and non-members,
published or unpublished writers or illustrators for
children or young adults, and those who have a keen
interest in children’s literature.

Rules : An entrance fee will be collected. Limited seats,
first come first served. The organizers reserve the right to
impose at any time rules and conditions that they deem
necessary for the safe and proper conduct of the event.

For details, contact :
Beaulah Taguiwalo <> or
Dominique Torres (Nikki) <>


SCBWI at UP in the Visayas

August 28, 2007


A SCBWI Day at UP in the Visayas

A one day seminar &
worskhop for published &
aspiring children’s book
writers & illustrators

Saturday 2007 August 25
At the UPV Art Gallery
UP in the Visayas, Iloilo City

Conducted by
Beaulah Pedregosa Taguiwalo

“What a charming and friendly setting for a children’s book workshop,” someone said of the Art Gallery at the University of the Philippines in the Visayas (UPV), Iloilo City. We couldn’t agree more. The lovely old building was formerly the Iloilo City Hall, donated to the UPV in the 1930s. This fortunate handover took place during the term of then Iloilo City Mayor Garganera who, it turned out, is the grandfather of Joseph, one of the participants! Here then is our report, in words and pictures, of our children’s book event that was held there last Saturday, 2007 August 25.

Here we are in the lobby of this historic building, and later inside the UPV Art Gallery. (All photos by Mark Taguiwalo)



First, Prof. Vinnie Tan gave the Opening Remarks. After that, hands-on sessions throughout the day alternated with Beaulah’s Powerpoint presentations.



We browsed through the children’s books that Nikki and Beaulah brought.


Then we had a Roundtable Booktalk.


As instructed, people picked a book because they wanted to talk about it, or because they had lots of questions to ask about it.


People were so eager to talk, we went overtime!





Afterwards, we did what we said we’d do – craft stories just for fun.


We tried “writing” and “rewriting” our stories using various methods, some of them quite unheard of for a number of participants. “Not only was it fun, it was empowering,” said some.


“I never thought I could ‘write’ like this,” said another. “The Crafting Stories Just for Fun was really fun! It was my first experience and found it engaging and stimulating,” said yet another.



Beaulah then talked about what it takes to get published. She discussed writing, submissions, contracts, editing, illustration and book design, pre-press production, printing, and distribution. The final topic was P.O.D. and Self-Publishing.




“It’s as if my unreachable star is now within my reach,” said Noemi Grace Palmares at the end.

Here’s more of what the others said :

“It rekindled my passion for writing. I learned a lot.” (Lyncen M. Fernandez)

“The design of the programme was suitable, comprehensive, compact. The conduct of the workshop was informative, insightful, thorough, fluid, relaxed, fun.” (Joseph C.G. Albaña)

“The presentations were very concrete. The facilitators were approachable. It’s good that the session was limited to only a few so there was focus in every interaction.”

“. . . gave me the inspiration to come up with my own published book . . . [It’s as if] my unreachable star has now become within my reach . . . I just MIGHT find my name on the cover of a hardbound book!” (Noemi Grace V. Palmares)

“The facilitator was articulate . . . a prolific advocate of children’s literature – well versed and enthusiastic. The writing clinics allowed us to at least get started – writing pleasurable stuff for children, so we can eventually get somewhere.” What would I like to see more of in future SCBWI events? “More workhops and clinics [that] can help us follow through whatever we have started here and now.” ” (Niño Saavedra Manaog)

Once again, we would like to express our thanks and appreciation to our UPV partners for helping us organize and host this event – the UPV Chancellor’s Committee for Culture and Arts (CCCA) chaired by Prof. Vinnie Tan, and the UPV Office of Continuing Education and Pahinungod (OCEP) under Director Celia F. Parcon. Last but not the least, we’d like to thank our friend for leading us to the right people and places in Iloilo City – cultural worker, arts administrator, and teacher Joseph William C. G. Albaña.

See you at the next SCBWI event in the Visayas!


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January 28, 2007


with John Shelley

For those who illustrate,
or want to illustrate, for
children and young adults
2007 May 26

At the British Council
10th Floor Taipan Place
Emerald Avenue, Pasig City

“Wonderful, wonderful speaker. John Shelley rocks!” (Jill Arwen Posadas)

Below, left to right : British Council Director Andrew Picken giving the Welcome Remarks, SCBWI Regional Advisor Beaulah Taguiwalo standing by to introduce the SCBWI and John Shelley, Assistant Regional Advisor Dominique Torres (Nikki) manning the sign-up table (seated, extreme right). More pictures, and more participants’ comments, below. (All photos by Mark Taguiwalo).


Below : John’s slideshow, starting with his British roots and background.


Below : Display of John’s books.


Below : John and rapt listeners during the portfolio critique – (left to right) Beaulah, Liza, Nikki, Pepper, and Neni (seated).


More pictures below, top to bottom : Karina engrossed in a quiet corner. John with St. Benilde students. John with his sketchbook, and with Robert. Various other shots taken during the character and story development session and the portfolio critiques.













Below : Myrha hands John a gift from the British Council – a British Council bear!


We asked people what they liked best about the event, here’s what they said:

“Everything. It was very well planned and executed. Wonderful, wonderful speaker. John Shelley rocks!” (Jill Arwen Posadas)

“The portfolio critique was one of the highlights, whether it was shared or [just] my own. We learned so much!” (Mariel Vera Go)

“Interesting presentation – history of children’s illustrations; the venue; the hands-0n workshop session.” (Neni Sta. Romana Cruz)

“I enjoyed the whole event! The lecture part was very informative. The activity/workshop part was challenging – an effective way to get illustrators to create/write their own stories. The portfolio review was also very helpful – wonderful insights!” (Liza Flores)

“John Shelley was very obliging, and it was an honor to meet him.” (Christina Torres)

“The discussion of British illustration history… the best! I suddenly developed a fascination for ‘old style’ illustration.” (Wilford Almoro)

“The workshop gave me a clearer idea of the creative process that goes into illustrating and writing a children’s book. I’m a total newbie in the field, and I am leaving the workshop totally inspired. Totally worth the time and the trip!” (Monette Olivera Pangan)

“The challenge of putting together a storyboard was an adventure for me. The personal history plus illustrators history was an extreme delight. I appreciate what the organizers put together for this workshop. Thank you!” (Teresita Mapua)


About John Shelley : Born in Birmingham (UK) and now based in Tokyo, John Shelley is a widely published artist. He works internationally for publishers in both East and West and has knowledge and experience about illustration in Europe and Japan. He studied at Bournville School of Art, then illustration at Manchester Polytechnic under children’s illustrator Tony Ross. He worked freelance in London from 1983, then moved to Tokyo in 1987 where he became established for commercial illustration. He also continued with children’s books. In fact, his first major picture book “The Secret in the Matchbox” (1988) was shortlisted for the Mother Goose Award and received a Parent’s Choice Award in the US. His publishers include Tokuma Shoten, Hyoronsha, Fukuinkan Shoten, Front Street, Scholastic, Andersen Press, and others. He is a member of JAGDA (Japan Graphic Designer’s Association), PBAA (Picture Book Artists Association), and is a Board member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). Visit his website at

* Meet John Shelley
* John’s children’s books
* John’s other artwork
* John’s homepage

Organizers : SCBWI Philasia

* Beaulah Taguiwalo, SCBWI Regional Advisor
0917-787-4956 or
* Dominique Torres (Nikki), SCBWI Asst. Regional Advisor
0917-667-1267 or

The Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI) was formed in 1971 by a group of Los Angeles based writers for children. It is the only international organization that offers a variety of services for people who write, illustrate, or share a vital interest in children’s literature. There are currently more than 19,000 members in over 70 regions worldwide, making it the largest children’s writing & illustrating organization in the world. More about the SCBWI at

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Joy Flies in the

A writing workshop
with Alice McLerran
2006 November 11

At Filipinas Heritage Library
Makati, Metro Manila

Below, top to bottom : Alice and Beaulah signing copies of their new books. Alice at one of the tables during the group critiques. Nikki, Beaulah and Alice have a quick early morning meeting before everyone else arrives. (Photos by Mark Taguiwalo).




Read two accounts by Dominique Garde Torres here.

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Historical Fiction
for Children and
Young Adults

A writing workshop
with Chris Eboch
2006 July 15

At Orchid Garden Hotel
Malate, Metro Manila

Read the report by Dominique Garde Torres here.

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A Gathering
of Illustrators

Talk and
portfolio critiques
by NY art agent
Mela Bolinao
2006 March 7

At Makati, Metro Manila

Below, top to bottom : Mela telling a rapt audience all about her work as an art agent in New York while Nikki takes notes at her left. Mela looking at portfolios, giving comments to individual artists, and chatting with Beaulah while everyone else hobnobs and exchange notes with each other. (Photos by Mark Taguiwalo)





Here are the other artists who were there, just as eager as I was to hear what Mela had to say. I’ve heard it many times, and read it in numerous FAQs – the do’s and don’ts in preparing your portfolio. It was something else, however, to hear it again right there, from an honest to goodness artist agent. I certainly picked up more than a thing or two last March 7. And I also finally and completely understood a few things that I knew beforehand, but only in theory. “Have a distinct, signature style,” for example. – Beaulah’s 2 Cents

Here’s a longer account by Nikki :

On March 7, 2006, from 5:30 to 9:30 in the evening, the SCBWI hosted a Gathering of Illustrators. Our speaker for the evening was Mela Bolinao, a Filipino American who is also a New York based illustrators’ agent with 11 years experience, specializing in children’s books. She critiqued portfolios and gave a brief talk on the art and craft of putting together a portfolio.

But this was not what the evening was solely about – at least not for me.

Read the whole account here.

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Writing for Teenagers
& Young Adults

A writing workshop
with Deborah Ellis
2005 March 5

At Museo Pambata
Roxas Boulevard, Manila

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Focus on
Picture Books

Writers, illustrators,
book reviewers, publishers
2004 April 30

At RCBC Plaza
Ayala Avenue
Makati, Metro Manila

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Picture Books

A seminar by
Neni Sta. Romana Cruz
2003 May 17

At RCBC Plaza
Ayala Avenue
Makati, Metro Manila

Below : Neni Sta. Romana Cruz, our resource speaker. She is, among other things, a children’s author, a book reviewer, a regular contributor to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and the Head of the Children’s Media Center at International School Manila.



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The Art & Business of
Writing for Children
& Young Adults

A writing workshop
with Jen McVeity
2002 November 16

At International School Manila
For Bonifacio Global City

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Meet the author
Jo Kittinger

Talk & Open Forum
2002 January 6

At AIM Conference Center
Makati, Metro Manila

Our very first SCBWI event in the Philippines!

Below, seated left to right : Abi Goy, Liza Flores, Jo Kittinger. Standing, left to right : May Tobias, Fran Ng, Isa Saplala, Ani Almario, Ouie Badelles, SCBWI Regional Advisor Beaulah Pedregosa Taguiwalo, Lin Flores, Neni Sta. Romana Cruz, Anette Flores Garcia, Nikki Torres, Carla Pacis, and Krip Yuson. At the back row is a colleague who, we fervently hope, will forgive us because his name escapes us at the moment. If anyone can help us with this, please email or


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