Saturday, April 27, 2024



What are your reading habits and/or tendencies (e.g. favorite type of reads)?

I actually don't spend a lot of time reading in a day, maybe two hours at most in the evenings. Though of course I am fortunate to have sustained this habit from my teens into my adult years; on top of writing, watching films, and keeping a day job. I read a bit of everything; fiction, academic books, poetry, graphic novels. I also try my best to read in various languages; English, Filipino, Hiligaynon, and Kinaray-a. The past few years, I have been focusing more on poetry as I have been writing and translating some myself. Every August, I participate in the Sealey Challenge where one tries to read one poetry book a day for the entire month. I am proud to have been successful in the last three years. 


What are you currently reading?

Several, diverse titles at the moment: Elsewhere: Writings on Art by Lyra Garcellano (grana books, 2024), Armor by John Bengan (Ateneo de Manila Press, 2022), Parables by Pablo Armando Fernandez (Mosaic Press, 2001), Footnotes in Gazaby Joe Sacco (Metropolitan Books, 2009), Pook At Paninindigan: Kritika ng Pantayong Pananaw by Ramon Guillermo (UP Press, 2009), City of Screens: Imagining Audiences in Manila's Alternative Film Culture by Jasmine Nadua Trice (Duke University Press, 2021), and lastly rereading the poetry of Lean Borlongan as I am translating them from Filipino into English.  


If you’re a published book author, choose a book(s) and think about how you hope readers would read it?

My debut poetry collection, Invitation to See The Leaves Outside, is forthcoming later this year from FlowerSong Press. On a basic level, it is basically a documentation of my experiences living abroad in Canada for a few years, but I also hope it would help readers—Filipino or otherwise, in the diaspora or not—to rethink migrations; its roots, its mechanisms, its myths. 


Please share some favorite books.

Grieving: Dispatches from a Wounded Country by Cristina Rivera Garcia

Collected Poems of Audre Lorde

Sa Aking Henerasyon by Kerima Lorena Tariman

Dead Balagtas by Emiliana Kampilan

Black Arcadia by Kristine Ong Muslim


Ask yourself a reading-related question you concoct, and answer it.

In how many languages should one read in? 

In as many as possible 




Eric Abalajon’s works have appeared in Plumwood Mountain Journal, Tripwire: a journal of poetics, Stonecoast Review, Modern Poetry in TranslationFirmament Magazine, and Mānoa: A Pacific Journal of International Writing. His debut poetry collection is forthcoming from FlowerSong Press. He lives near Iloilo City, Philippines.



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