Renowrites blog!

Author of YA novel "Enlightenment" available March 2019!

America is in the Heart

An important novel for Filipino American literature is “America is in the Heart” by Carlos Bulosan, the first novel written in English by a Filipino in America! With today’s political climate, this novel gives Filipino American context on the “America” we live in. Check out my Goodreads review.

America Is in the Heart: A Personal History (Washington Paperbacks)America Is in the Heart: A Personal History by Carlos Bulosan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A masterpiece of a novel for Filipino American literature! The first published novel by a Filipino in the United States!

Carlos Bulosan gives a heartfelt depiction of his life as a Filipino immigrant during the Great Depression. You can feel his heartbeat throughout the novel. Even the parts that seems disjointed is a reflection of the real life hardships he faced. An English grammar aficionado may cringe in some parts of this book, but I personally applaud Carlos Bulosan for his attempt at writing in his second language. He grew up in the Philippines and migrated to the Philippines with the hope of having a better life. This is a theme many Americans can relate to!

I give this 5 stars due to its historical context and important for Filipino American literature.

View all my reviews

Filed under: Writing

Fil-Am perspectives in Hollywood?

The presence of Filipino Americans in Hollywood is an issue close to my being.

On May 31st, there was a panel hosted by Fil-Am Creative regarding this very subject. Fil-Am Creative is a collective of actors, writers and producers who strive for their voice to be heard in the Hollywood minefields. How do we navigate in this minefield? This is a daunting task for anyone who attempts to make it in Hollywood.


But imagine Filipino Americans trying to make it?  We are background players in the big budget movie entitled “Hollywood” functioning as gaffers, writers and producers, but fuh-get-about being on-screen!

There have been tangible strides made in TV with actors like Angela Relucio on CBS’s “Code Black”, Manny Jacinto on NBC’s “The Good Place,” and Aina Dumlao on CBS’s “MacGyver”. They are working in Hollywood, and I know just having a regular acting gig deserves a round of applause!

But…they play characters written through the lense of the Establishment (yes, I capitalized the E on purpose, so take that blog copy editors!).

What about our stories? Our perspective? This is why I love knowing Fil-Am Creative exists. Youtube channels, television pilots, short and feature films are being made and looking for support, created and influenced by talented Filipino-Americans who deserve their voice to be heard. Fil-Am Creative provides a platform to be heard.

Filipinos have a diverse set of perspectives that need a place to be heard. Filipino immigrants have a different viewpoint than third or fourth generation Filipino Americans. We are such a diverse group. Muddling through this diversity within ourselves is a challenge in itself. A support group like Fil-Am Creative can recognize these differences (thank God!).

For me, it’s a big sigh of relief knowing there is a movement of Fil-Am stories being told in the shadows of Hollywood’s elite.  I was lucky enough to meet a few people behind the scenes of this organization. My first thought: why didn’t I know about them before?

I’ve been reawakened.

For those who haven’t heard of Fil-Am Creative, check out their Filmmaker movement post, which gives you surface view of the work involved to support Fil-Am content creators! With funding always the issue in getting projects from infancy into public view, those with financial resources can get behind a support group like Fil-Am Creative and influence the creation of more great content! It’s gotta be great though. No junk, or else we add to the skepticism already prevalent to most who hear the words “Filipino American film.”

Let us not lose sight of one thing; a movement cannot be just one feature or one short. We must have a series of “quality” projects that allows us to be self-sufficient. Hmmm…I feel like I’m posting a car-ride lecture to my kids! Now I feel their pain.

Let’s. Not. Stop! More Fil-Am content please!







Filed under: film, Hollywood, , ,

Warriors Parade 2017

I breath basketball outside of writing. I’m the Varsity Girls Head Coach at our local high school and the founder of a 501c3 AAU basketball club. And a hardcore Golden State Warriors season ticket holder!

I secured an invite to be in the Warriors Parade +1. My son NOAH was the lucky one — his sisters declined so he definitely owes them!

They put us in one of the Coaching Staff trolleys. It was fun to see Coach Kerr and Coach Mike Brown running to and from the trolley during the parade!


We also met Ronny, the guy who had Klay Thompson sign his toaster!

Met this fan favorite too!


NOAH was shy to meet these girls, but meet them he did (with a little push from me)!

Dubnation started to wonder — who is that bandana boy in the Coaching staff trolley?

We had a lot of room in the trolley once the coaches consolidated into another cable car!


Hung out backstage during the Rally. NOAH got autographs and we got our fill of shrimp, chicken kabobs and fruit!  We really enjoyed the shade in the tent!


We then decided to go out to the Rally after seeing players and staff play jokes on each other backstage!

The Warriors have been a big part of our lives! The 2017 Warriors Parade had to be at the top of the list of Warrior experiences for our family. Win or lose, we will always be proud members of #Dubnation!

Thank you to the Warriors for taking care of us! NBA Champs baby!

Filed under: basketball, , , , , , ,