It’s been a busy October as we celebrated Filipino-American History Month and October 25th as Larry Itliong Day. A quick recap is in order.
Jack & Agyu arrived in September, just in time for Jack’s 8th birthday. I was so nervous when I got the box- I almost didn’t want to open it. I was so so worried I’d find a glaring typo or something, even though we had checked and double, triple, quadruple checked the proofs. But of course my fears were unfounded. The book is beautiful and, unlike in my dream/nightmare, the pages have the words. Fittingly, Jack was the first person to officially read the finished book. He is mighty proud of “his” book.
A few days after, and without too much fanfare, Jack & Agyu debuted at the Filipino American Educators Association of California Conference, Equity Through Ethnic Studies: 50 Years of Fighting for Educational Justice. Much thanks to FAEAC for inviting me to showcase the books.
In October, we celebrated FAHM at the local Davis library with a screening of a documentary on the Delano Manongs, Larry Itliong, and their contribution to the formation of the United Farm Workers Union. The screening was followed by a discussion on writing and publishing by a panel of authors that included me, Reno Ursal, and R. Zamora Linmark. It was a well attended event- the halo-halo and the lumpia disappeared pretty quickly! Thanks to the Mary Stephens Library librarians Katrina and Joan, and Robyn Rodrguez of the UCD Bulosan Center for collaborating.
Then we were off to the Fil-Am International Book Festival in San Francisco. Thanks to Christina Newhard of Sari-Sari Press who organized the Children’s Corner readings and events. So cool to hear the very positive reaction to the book from kids and adults!
The weekend after, Mike and I attended the UndiscoveredSF event. And though the night was cold and the alley where we set up was pretty stinky, it was a fun time meeting more kids who checked out Jack & Agyu, hang out with our friend Gigi whom we had not seen for over 5 years, and talk shop with fellow Fil-Am small press publishers Christina Newhard (of Sari-Sari Press) and Gayle Romasanta (of Bridge + Delta Publishing).
At the end of the month, the rest of the books arrived! Just in time for my birthday. Woo-hoo!
And we asked our dear friend, Melissa Moreno, to help us give thanks to the Creator, and to everything and everyone that came together so that the books could arrive at this point in time and place; to ask the Creator for permission to continue on with our work of spreading our culture, identity, stories through this book; and to ask the Creator for the continued blessings as we continue on with our work. It was a simple occasion, attended only by my family, Melissa’s family, and my dad. It felt right. After the thanksgiving, Jack did the honor of cutting the cargo binding and opening the first box of books. My dad then stayed to help wrap the individual books and put them in envelopes to be shipped tomorrow to our crowdfunders. If you’re one of them, expect to see the book in the next two weeks.
What an exciting month it was! We’re looking forward to launching the book at different locations and times. We will keep you posted in case you can make it to one of them. We will also be setting it up so the books can be purchased via our website (our preference) and Amazon. This should be happening in the next week or so.
Also, we’re working on a website dedicated solely to the book. More about this soon.
In the meantime, I hope you are enjoying the beautiful fall weather.
Thanks again for all the support. Till next update!