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Arts Culture International Women's Day: Quotes From 5 Filipina Fictionists

International Women's Day: Quotes From 5 Filipina Fictionists

International Women's Day: Quotes From 5 Filipina Fictionists
Photo; Patrick Tomasso / Unsplash
By Christine Andas
By Christine Andas
March 08, 2021
Celebrate Women's Month by reading books written by Filipina writers and their memorable quotes to live by

Update your reading list by including a few books written by incredible female fictionists from the Philippines just in time for Women's Month. You'll find that it won't take long before you become fully immersed in the worlds that these authors have created. Read on to learn more about these Filipina writers and their famous quotes to live by in every aspect of life:

1/5 Jessica Zafra


The Collected Stories of Jessica Zafra is composed of short fiction from her two books: The Stories so Far (2016) and Manananggal Terrorizes Manila and Other Stories (1992). Zafra's readers admire her humour and eloquence in writing stories with dark themes. James Hamilton-Paterson described her as a "natural short story writer". She has won three Palanca Awards—two of which was under the Short Fiction category. Apart from giving writing workshops at the Writing Boot Camp, Zafra has hosted several shows on TV and radio including The Sanity Maintenance Program on Studio B.

That's the thing about a great book. Every time you read it, it's different, because you're different. You've changed since the last time you picked it up, things have happened to you.

2/5 Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo

Image Courtesy of Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo
Image Courtesy of Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo

It's hard to forget the characters you meet and learn in Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo's stories. Apart from being a pioneer of creative non-fiction in the Philippines, the multi-awarded author has produced several works in other genres including fiction. She is the author of the epistolary novel Recuerdo, a story that is told through a collection of email messages. Hidalgo also has published short story collections such as Catch A Falling Star and Collected Stories and Tales which was recently released. She has won over 10 awards and published textbooks on non-fiction, travel essays, and literary criticism to name a few.

The journal records the narrative now. And the tales retrieve the past.

Read more: Ask The Expert: Miguel Syjuco On Literature, Honesty, And Why We Should Read More

3/5 FH Batacan


The Philippines' first modern crime novel, Smaller and Smaller Circles, is written by Filipino journalist and fictionist Felisa Batacan, famously known as FH Batacan. Set in the Philippines, the novel follows the investigation of two Catholic priests who are eager to uncover the mystery behind the killings. Years after the novel was released, the book was adapted into a film. The book received recognition at the Palanca Awards and Philippine National Book Awards. For a thrilling read, consider adding this novel to your list.

We are powerless when we wait for other people to act on our behalf. Yes, that's it. The truly powerful man is the man who stands alone.

—FH Batacan, Smaller and Smaller Circles

4/5 Gina Apostol


If you're fascinated with history and crime, look into the decorated fictionist Gina Apostol's stories. She is the author of the novels Insurrecto, Gun Dealers' Daughter, Bibliolepsy and The Revolution According to Raymundo Mata. Her historical novels provide a new perspective on significant events in the Philippines and a voice to the women characters in her stories.

Words are all we have to save us...but at the same time, they are not enough to make us whole.

—Gina Apostol, Gun Dealers' Daughter

Read more: Books That Changed Your Life: Trick Mirror, Kite Runner—Tatler Friends Share Their Picks

5/5 Cyan Abad-Jugo


Whether you'd like to revisit your childhood or read to your little ones, consider reading Cyan Abad Jugo's children's stories that include wonderful illustrations like Letters from Crispin, The Looking Glass Tree and Yaya Maya and the White King. Most of her works, including the novel Salingkit and the short story collection Sweet Summer and Other Stories, add an interesting and insightful twist to history and Philippine mythology. She has also published a book with her father Gémino H. Abad titled Father and Daughter: The Figures of Our Speech. Recently, she has published Leaf and Shadow: Stories About Some Friendly Creatures which won second place at the Palanca Awards.

It’s only when I write things down that I become clear to myself. I would like to make writing my advocacy. Everyone should write and clarify themselves to themselves.

Read more: International Women's Day 2021: 21 Filipino Women In The Food And Drink Industry To Know


Arts & Culture International Women's Month


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