Renowrites blog!

Author of YA novel "Enlightenment" available March 2019!

MLK Holiday

On January 3rd, 1986, the first MLK Holiday was national recognized in the United States. The MLK Holiday has only been in our consciousness for 33 years. Only since 1986. At that time, only 27 states and Washington DC recognized the third Monday of January as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

The state of Arizona did not recognize the holiday until 1992. South Carolina was the last state to recognize MLK Day as a paid holiday. This happened in the year 2000. Today in 2019, all 50 states and U.S. territories recognize MLK Day as a holiday.

It is my opinion we’ve come quite a ways since the bill was introduced in 1983. This is a people’s holiday, a holiday to recognize with a man’s message of peace and hope, a holiday to recognize that race is not the determining factor in a person’s character or fate.

This photo of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States from 2008-2016, reminds me that America and the world is slowly getting past the marginal attitudes of the past. Slowly…very slowly…

Slowly…we prod along…slowly.

Here’s to Martin Luther King, Jr…a man ahead of his time.


Can you guess where this chocolate mold is displayed?

Filed under: politics, Writing

Young Adultish talk

Should YA writers conform to a publishing standard or have their dialogue reflect real talk between teenagers and young adults?

School Library Journal writes on this issue and it’s worth asking.

What do YA readers want to read?

Real vernacular between characters resonates better with me as a YA reader. It’s just more of an authentic voice to me and I connect with the story better. And I strongly believe a “publishing standard” are rules set by generations of publishers and writers from majority backgrounds. Writers from minority backgrounds have historically had to conform.

Now we are here in 2019 asking this question. And to me, it’s progress.

Filed under: Writing

Trese – Comicbook and Netflix Series


Each culture has its own derivative unique to their own people. For Filipinos, we have distinct mythology that pre-dates Spanish colonization. This is one reason my book series is called The Bathala Series. Bathala was a deity worshipped by native islanders. For pop culture authors and creators, this mythology is open for interpretation and a treasure trove for creativity.

For Enlightenment, I wrote a coming-of-age love story with Filipino history and mythology adding to the mystery and tension in Dorothy and Adrian’s relationship. I’ve added elements that had my pop culture side tingling with excitement while being careful to be respectful to my people’s history.

Besides the excitement of having my own novel released in March 2019, I’m excited that Filipino mythology is spawning more stories from various content creators like myself.

Trese is a comic book published in 2005 and is now on Netflix as an animated series. If you haven’t read the comic, read it. Like my novel Enlightenment, it’s one author’s take on Filipino mythology.

As explained in this Vice article, author Budjette Tan and illustrator Kajo Baldisimomined the treasure trove of Philippine folklore to tell the story of their titular, kick-ass heroine, a detective with mysterious skills and otherworldly weapons, who works with the police to solve crimes that defy science and ordinary motives.

There are six anthologies and they are all kick-ass awesome. Check out Trese on Goodreads! And watch it on Netflix by searching “Trese.”

Filed under: Writing, , , , ,

Enlightenment pre-orders

Enlightenment is now available for pre-order everywhere books are sold.  Amazon. Barnes & Nobles. Powells. Indiebound. If you go into a store and they don’t carry it, let them know they should give Enlightenment a bit of shelf space in the Young Adult section!  Filipino characters? Paranormal journey? Secret society? For me, it’s a no brainer. Hopefully booksellers agree!

To guarantee you receive the Enlightenment paperback by the March 14 publication date, order directly by clicking here!  And enter code “sitan2019” for a discount! 

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Here’s to being Enlightened in 2019! #enlightenmentnovel2019





Filed under: Writing

Here’s to 2019…and beyond

Happy New Year!

2019 will be a year filled with apprehension and excitement for me. As a writer, you dream about your first novel being published. In my writing story, the beta readers and editors continually challenged me. This was frustrating. But now, I know the story is where it needs to be. I thank them wholeheartedly!

Enlightenment’s publication date is March 2019. We’ve had advanced readers give honest feedback and I’m looking forward to more as March approaches. This is Book One of The Bathala Series, a series I’ve lived with for so long! It’s nerve-wracking and exciting to have Book One available to the public. It’s time for YA readers to be introduced to Dorothy and Adrian.

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So here’s wishing you all a 2019 to remember. We have quite a bit of uncertainty in today’s world. It’s my hope this uncertainty will not keep us from being grateful for each gift we receive in our every day lives.

In 2019, follow me on Instagram @ renowrites and on Twitter @reno1107. I’ll also be posting on this blog more often.

Thank you all for being patient with me and hope you find Enlightenment in 2019!

Filed under: Writing