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Saturday, May 16, 2009

NCCA Writers' Prize Now Open

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts announces that the NCCA Writers’ Prize is now open for application by Filipino writers.

The NCCA Writers’ Prize a biennial grant awarded to five (5) writers, one for each of the following categories: Poetry (Ilocano language), Novel (Filipino language), Essay (Kapampangan language), and Drama (Cebuano language/Bicolano language). The grant, in the amount of TWO HUNDRED FIFTY THOUSAND PESOS gross, will assist the Grantee during the writing stage of the project. The grant is good for one year, after which a manuscript of the writing project will be submitted to the NCCA for possible publication or staging.

The NCCA, in line with its mission to “encourage the continuing development of a pluralistic culture by the people themselves,” will be creating the opportunity to have a direct hand in the development of Filipino literature. With the grant, the NCCA Writers’ Prize winners will be freed from the demands of their work and shall be able to focus on the writing of the project for one year.


The grant is open to all Filipino writers, of legal age, except to the officers and members of the NCCA Secretariat and the incumbent Executive Council Members of the NCCA Committee on Literary Arts and Committee on Dramatic Arts.


For the 2009 NCCA Writers’ Prize competition, the following shall be the requirements in the submission of entries:

1. Applicants must submit an accomplished application form, available at the NCCA Planning, Policy Formulation, and Programming Division (P/PFPD) or download from the NCCA website: http://www.ncca.gov.ph, curriculum vitae, and a 3 – 5 page concept paper discussing the rationale and significance of the project, the initial output of the project which shall be submitted in four (4) printed copies along with the concept paper. For 2009, the categories and the expected initial output are:

Category Initial Output

1. Novel – Filipino language First 50 pages
2. Poetry – Ilocano language 10 poems; 1 poem per page
3. Drama – Bicolano language 1 act for a full length drama, 2 1-act plays
4. Drama – Cebuano language 1 act for a full length drama; 2 1-act plays
5. Essay – Kapampangan language 3 chapters or no less than 50 pages

All the sample works shall be in typewritten form. Manuscript and concept paper shall not bear the name of the applicant in any of the pages.

2. Applicants are allowed to apply in only one (1) category.

3. Applications will be evaluated by an Ad Hoc Screening Committee selected by the Committee on Literary Arts and the Committee on Dramatic Arts. There will be three members of the screening committee per category.

4. The grant will be released in four tranches, with the first tranche to be given during the awards ceremony at the beginning of the writing period and the succeeding tranches upon submission of the following:

2nd tranche - 50% of the writing project
3rd tranche - 75% of the writing project
4th tranche - 100% of the writing project

5. The writing grant is good only for one year. The NCCA will allow a maximum extension of six (6) months only with written justification by the Grantee.

6. Completed manuscript must be submitted in two forms: one (1) printed copy and one (1) electronic copy in MSWord format in a diskette. The project output shall be as follows:

Category Project Output

1. Novel – Filipino language Minimum of 50,000 words
2. Poetry – Ilocano language 30 poems
3. Drama – Bicolano language 2 or more acts for a full-length drama, 5 1-act plays
4. Drama – Cebuano language 2 or more acts for a full-length drama; 5 1-act plays
5. Essay – Kapampangan language 12 chapters or no less than 200 pages

7. The grant is non-transferable. All privileges shall be enjoyed by the Grantee himself/herself based on the successful evaluation of the work in progress. A member from the Screening Committee of each category shall be assigned as Reader to evaluate the succeeding materials to be submitted by the Grantee. Upon submission of the positive evaluation of the reader for the second and third tranches, the corresponding amounts shall be released immediately to the Grantee. However, for the fourth tranche, the same will be released only upon completion of evaluation of the completed manuscript by the Reader. Revisions, however, may be recommended by the Reader. Only upon final approval of the completed manuscript shall the final tranche be released to the Grantee.

8. Deadline of submission of application together with the curriculum vitae of applicant and other requirements shall be on October 15, 2009. All applications shall be addressed to:

2009 NCCA WRITERS’ PRIZE Secretariat
Planning, Policy Formulation and Programming Div. –
Institutional Programs
National Commission for Culture and the Arts
NCCA Building, 633 General Luna St.
Intramuros, Manila

Attention: Frances S. Alincastre
Planning Officer III

9. Materials that were not selected shall not be returned anymore.


1. The Grantee hereby grants the NCCA the first option to publish the output of the Grant. The NCCA will have the right to produce or authorize to be produced, for staging, telecasting, broadcasting, or cinema or other forms of exhibition from time to time any output of the writing grant. The NCCA will also be allowed to include the output of the Grant in the NCCA Website. The first option to publish of NCCA expires one year after completion of the Grant.

2. It is understood that the literary material submitted has not been submitted to any other award body or has not received any prize and is not a completed manuscript but a work in progress. Any violation of the guidelines shall mean withdrawal of the grant and any amount paid to the Grantee shall be returned to the NCCA. The award then will be transferred to the person who garnered the second highest vote during the Screening of the materials.

For entry forms, write to info@ncca.gov.ph. or call 5272192 local 608.

Source: National Commission for the Culture and the Arts

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A Tao 道 Sign

Le poèt de Pangasinan

Santiago B. Villafania, a bilingual Filipino poet who writes in English and in his native language of Pangasinan, is the author of poetry collections Bonsaic Verses (2012), Pinabli and Other Poems (2012), Malagilion: Sonnets tan Villanelles (2007), and Balikas na Caboloan (Voices from Caboloan, 2005) published by the National Commission for the Culture and the Arts (NCCA) under its UBOD New Authors Series. He has been published in several countries and translated into several languages. Villafania is one of the 11 Outstanding Pangasinan conferred with the 2010 ASNA Award for the Arts and Culture (literature) during the first Agew na Pangasinan and also the 430th Foundation Day of the province on April 2010. He is a member of Philippine PEN writes a regular weekly column for the Sunday Punch.



A collection of ghazals in Pangasinan language. Order now at Amazon.com

A collection of haiku, senryu, tanka, haiga, and other poems in English and Pangasinan language. Order now at Amazon.com

“Santiago Villafania is a searcher with a seemingly insatiable curiosity and endurance. His quest has brought him to explore world poetry from points East and West. He is no stranger to sophisticated verse forms such the Sapphic strophe nor to the diverse permutations of the Japanese haiku. But he is not a formalist, he has daringly explored Asian and Western cultures in a very personal way and writes his mind with a daring, invigorating, aesthetically pleasing ease. In his poetry Villafania displays not only a breadth, but it feels very much like a breath of fresh air.” – Ute Margaret Saine, poet, critic, translator, past president of PEN Orange County and the former editor of the California Poetry Quarterly

“Villafania’s emergence as a poet is a fine moment to celebrate. Another voice from the regions augurs a richer body of writing that Filipinos can hold up as a mirror of our native culture.” – Bienvenido Lumbera, National Artist for Literature

The Beloved Idiom | A Reading of Villafania’s ‘Pinabli & other poems’ by Dennis Andrew S. Aguinaldo

LCCN.: 2010338612

Order your copy now at CreateSpace or Amazon.com :)

"The publication of Malagilion: Sonnets tan Villanelles by Santiago B. Villafania should be a source of rejoicing for readers of regional literatures. This second book by Pangasinan's leading poet today is impressive in both form and substance. Villafania has created 300 sonnets and 50 villanelles in his own language that attempt to reflect the primacy of native culture and return the poet to the central stage of social life."A Boost to Pangasinan Literature from Breaking Signs by Cirilo F. Bautista (Philippine Panorama, 16 Dec. 2007, pp.25-26)

"Villafania is not only a visionary poet, he is a linguistic philosopher who codifies the origin of language and culture, dissects the myths and the common beliefs of the people against the urban legends, juxtaposes the literary tradition against the modern influences by dialectically infusing them in his poetic revelation of truth."Poetic Revelation in Language and Culture by Danny C. Sillada (Manila Bulletin, 12 May 2008, pp. F1-F2)

Photos: Book Launching at the Pearl Manila Hotel, 5 Feb. 2008

"Santiago Villafania's Balikas ed Caboloan certainly has reinvigorated the anlong tradition of Pangasinan that for a long period of time suffered silence from the hands of writers more attuned to English writing. Characteristically anacbanua, Villafania's poetry echoes his predecessors and presages a promising era for young writers in Pangasinan." – Dr. Marot Nelmida-Flores

Thesis: Bilay ed Caboloan - Reconfiguration of Space using a New Historicist Lens by Ayesah Tecson

from Pangasinan 'Anlong': Oral tradition into the 21st century published in Manila Times / Sunday Magazine, March 13 & 20, 2011.

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