Friends, look at where this blog brought me

You’ve heard about the online newspaper and magazine FMA Informative and how a few  of my blog posts got included in some of its issues, right? Well, it’s going to be a regular thing now. Really!

FMA Informative Publisher and Chief Editor, Punong Guro Steven Dowd, is here in the Philippines and yesterday my Arnis master, Cris Pasindo and I met him.

If I didn’t know any better, I would have been intimidated by this man who didn’t spend lots of time with “hi-hello” preliminaries, asked direct questions, and gave crisp directions.

First agenda, see some Arnis Pasindo moves. That's Master Cris with his assistant instructor, Lakan Von Altas
First agenda, see some Arnis Pasindo moves.
That’s Master Cris with his assistant instructor, Lakan Von Altas

But I guess that’s why he’s able to face challenges and achieve the difficult. Afterall, it takes a lot of drive and passion to find publishable material. You’ve got to be results-oriented to do that regularly. Imagine the number of people you have to communicate and work with!

Then he asked me if I’d like to be a regular contributor to the newspaper, writing about Filipino martial arts and how it intertwines with our culture.

me and Steven Dowd
Can you see the “oh-so-delighted” look in my eyes?

Knowing me, I got excited right away and said a swooning “Yes!”.  Although I’m feeling a little insecure because I never had any training in writing, I’m grateful for  the trust and opportunity to promote FMA.

OK, what can I offer?

Well, FMA is Filipino and I’m Filipino. I live in its land of origin and can speak Tagalog and Ilonggo,  therefore I have easier access to a lot of FMAers. Most of all, I offer my beginner’s perspective which is still generally unjaded and wide-eyed.

I just hope that I will be able to write well enough…

Anyway, who would have thought that I would be doing this? A little over a year ago I started this tiny blog knowing next to nothing about Arnis . Now I’m writing for one of its most popular newspapers. Hard to believe, but true. Oh, WOW!

Thank you very much FMA informative!

This life is good. Indeed.

P.S. I forgot that I removed my camera’s memory card so I requested hubby (and driver for the day) to use my cellphone to take the photos. Please excuse the off-color.  Hmmm, is this a preview of my life as a newspaper writer? Haha, I hope not! 😀


Why I didn’t say a thing for days

Photo credit:
Photo credit:

Ten days after that crazy Blogathon challenge of posting daily for one month and watching a high-energy Arnis tournament, I live to tell the story…

I was silent because I was BUSY (in a delicious, exciting kind of way so I’m not complaining at all! 🙂 )

My friends, my silence has created a…magazine (ta dah!)

FMA Informative, the international online newspaper, magazine, and digest asked me to work with them to put up a whole magazine issue about that Arnis tournament my instructor Master Cris Pasindo organized.

Of course, I said YES!

I worked with the Big Man of FMA Informative, the Chief Instructor and Inheritor of Arnis Balite, Steven Dowd himself! Mind you, he was nice and magnanimous to this amateur writer. He wasn’t demanding at all. He requested information and would just say “I’m standing by.” For some mysterious reason that courteous sentence made me get up from my oh-so-comfortable bed and do my assignment. Very effective.

The magazine will be FMA Informative Magazine’s Issue #87, coming sometime in August 2013. (Update: It’s out! See it here.)

And as icing on the cake, they will also include one of my posts in their July 30 newspaper. I’m thrilled! If you’re curious to know which post got their attention, click here.

You know, working with a great man with a great magazine to tell about a great event is a privilege not given to many.

I cherish the experience.

Thank you very much FMA Informative and Punong Guro Steven Dowd.



UPDATE: It’s out! I’m actually in a newspaper along with two formidable and highly respected Arnis grandmasters and authors,  Marc Lawrence and Mustafa Gatdula. It’s an honor. Check out the issue HERE.