Thomasian authors honored in 37th National Book Awards

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THOMASIAN authors Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo and Chuckberry Pascual were recognized in the awarding ceremony of the 37th National Book Awards last Nov. 24 at the National Museum of Fine Arts.

Hidalgo, director of the UST Center for Creative Writing and Literary Studies, won Best Book of Essays in English for “The Thing With Feathers: My Book of Memories,” published by the UST Publishing House in 2017.

Center for Creative Writing and Literary Studies Director Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo receives the Best Book of Essays in English award at the 37th National Book Awards. (Photo by Hazel Grace S. Posadas/ The Varsitarian)

“I’m a professional writer so I’m always writing. [This award is] always deeply appreciated. I haven’t won this National Book Award for many years now,” she told the Varsitarian.

Pascual, coordinator of UST’s creative writing program, bagged the Best Book in Short Fiction in Filipino for his work “Ang Nawawala,” published by Visprint, Inc. in 2017.

“[I]f you win an award for your work, that award is a by-product. What’s important is to write, have it published, and share your work to as many people as possible,” Pascual said.

UST’s Creative Writing Program Director Chuckberry Pascual receives the Best Book in Short Fiction in Filipino award at the 37th National Book Awards. (Photo by Hazel Grace S. Posadas/ The Varsitarian)

“I dedicate my work to all, but since the protagonist of my story is of a gay detective, I would also dedicate it to the LGBT community,” he added.

Fictionist Sarge Lacuesta, an author from the UST Publishing House, also received the Best Book in Short Fiction in English for his book “Coral Cove and Other Stories,” published in 2017.

The National Book Awards, organized by the National Book Development Board and the Manila Critics Circle, recognizes books by outstanding writers and publishers in the Philippines every year. J. J. B.

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