U.P. centennial literary awards winners announced

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 09 2008 04:30 PM | Updated as of Jul 10 2008 12:30 AM

Double winner Criselda Yabes

The U.P. Institute of Creative Writing has announced the winners of the Gawad Likhaan: U.P. Centennial Literary Awards.

In the English division, the winners are: Jose Marte A. Abueg (poetry, for his collection, “ Bird Lands , River Nights and Other Melancholies”); Criselda D. Yabes (fiction and creative nonfiction, for her novel, “Below the Crying Mountain,” and her nonfiction narrative, “Sarena's Story: The Loss of a Kingdom”).

In the Filipino division, the winners are: Jerry B. Gracio (poetry, for his collection, “Aves”); Jose Rey Munsayac (fiction, for his novel, “Duguang Kamay sa Nilulumot na Pader”; and Lualhati M. Abreu (creative nonfiction, for “Agaw Dilim, Agaw Liwanag”).

There is only one grand prize of P200,000 for each of the six categories. Award ceremonies were held on Tuesday, July 8, at the Pulungang Claro M. Recto, Faculty Center , UP Diliman. The affair is open to the public.

All entries to the contest were book-length, previously unpublished work.

The double winner, Yabes, is a U.P. Journalism graduate, and a freelance journalist and writer. She has worked for AP, Reuters, Newsweek, The Washington Post , and The Economist ; and has written three other books including one on the coup d'etats of the 1980s, her personal sojourn in Europe, and the almost extinct Pala'wan syllabary.

Abueg, a graduate of the UP School of Economics , is managing editor of INQUIRER.netas well as overall editor, in charge of INQUIRER.net Money website. He has won other awards, like the Carlos Palanca Awards and the Philippines Free Press Literary Awards.

Gracio, a U.P. Malikhaing Pagsulat alumnus, is a writer of screenplays, and won a National Book Award in 2006 for Apokripos. Abreu does research work and writing for non-government organizations in Metro Manila and Mindanao . Munsayac, editor of the weekly Bulacan paper Dyaryong Pilipino Luzon Times, shared the first prize with Jun Cruz Reyes in the 1998 National Centennial Literary Awards for his novel, “Ang Aso, ang Pulgas, ang Bonsai at ang Kolorum.”

The U.P. Centennial Commission set up and funded the Gawad Likhaan as part of the UP Centennial Celebrations, to highlight the University's contribution to the advancement of Philippine letters, through the prestigious UP National Writers Workshop held by the UP Institute of Creative Writing; its various ground-breaking publications; and the creative writing programs which have produced so many of the country's writers.

The contest was administered by the UP Institute of Creative Writing. Members of the panel of judges were: J. Neil C. Garcia, Ricardo M. de Ungria, and Gémino H. Abad (poetry in English); Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo, Charlson Ong, and Amelia Lapeña-Bonifacio (fiction in English); Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr., Rosario Cruz Lucero, and Vicente Garcia Groyon (creative nonfiction in English); National Artist Virgilio S. Almario, Vim Nadera, and Romulo Baquiran, Jr. (tula); Jun Cruz Reyes, Roland Tolentino, and Soledad Reyes (nobela o maikling katha); and National Artist Bienvenido Lumbera, Fanny Garcia, and Nicanor Tiongson (sanaysay).

The major sponsor of the Award ceremonies is the Book Development Association of the Philippines through its president, Lirio Sandoval. Other sponsors are the Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature, San Miguel Corporation, and Tanduay Distillers.