the one place my spirit always goes to when my body is asleep: what i wrote about at the creative writing workshop

if you ask me if i’d still wanna join another creative writing workshop, the answer is… i don’t know. probably. probably not.

the two-part workshop i attended the last two saturdays was nice. well, i didn’t exactly learn anything technical but then again, technicalities fuck up creativity to some extent. what i did learn was to appreciate this thing that i have going in terms of being able to come up with beautiful proses out of my love/hate relationship with life and all its dramas.

so, yeah, i paid $20 for people to validate my worth as a writer. something i always get for free from girlie and jeff. (god forbid they start charging me now.) but if anything, it was worth every dollar. everyone there was just really nice and encouraging. a lot of them were REALLY GOOD. and i mean REALLY GOOD. caps lock and all. and for them to tell me that i did great as well was definitely an ego booster. (i’m still shy as hell, though, so i’m probably the last person you’d see walking around with an inflated ego.)

now, the reason i’m kinda hesitant to join another creative writing workshop is that i feel i’m not really serious enough to want to write a book or get myself published big-time. writing is just something that i do and love to do and would continue to do and if it leads me to that path, then good. if not, then i’d still be here doing my thing, regardless.

i’m going to shut up now and share with you guys what i wrote, albeit nervously. (no kidding, i’m actually as nervous at the thought of typing this down as i was reading it at the workshop.)

here we go.

dear jan,


they say it’s one of the oldest houses in your hometown. your mother proudly boasts about the year it was constructed. 1935. an old yellow ancestral house with wooden doors and wide open windows that have welcomed several typhoons, as well as hundreds of guests over the years. while keeping the dark secrets from revealing themselves to the outside world.


it’s a nice house. you spent most of your childhood in it. surrounded by fruit trees and flowers your mom religiously watered everyday, you have grown to love it even when you hated the toilet, with all its shabbiness and lack of proper lighting.


the trains have long since retired. the train tracks that used to sit near the house have all been removed. some of the metal components, perhaps stolen. but it fascinates you to think about a railway station nearby. even when you never even witnessed it for yourself because the trains have long since stopped operating before you were even born.


the house, at one point, was shaped like a cross. your grandfather took it upon himself to renovate the house to shelter such a large family — him, your grandmother, your mother and her 8 brothers and sisters. he was a good man, your grandfather. a very good, talented genius of a man who built the first windmill in your town. when he wasn’t drunk. unfortunately, he was drunk pretty much every day of the week when his vices finally took hold of him and his personality.


funny, though, how he gave you your name even when he was already dead. his ingenuity found a way to break through astral dimensions and into your father’s dreams when your mom was still carrying you in her tummy. “name the child jewey,” he said. your father woke up and wrote the name down on a calendar that was hanging on the wall. he didn’t even know if you were going to be a girl or a boy. but he knew how to spell your name. your grandfather spelled it out to him as part of his instruction.


so now you wonder what that dream could mean. you wonder if you really are that special. well, you are. you don’t know how or why yet but like your father’s dream, it will come to you.


the house is still there now. broken. dilapidated. aging badly like a person who lost care in the world. but in your dreams, it looks just as good as when you were last living in it. almost all of your dreams have its setting there. as if you never left. as it it’s the one place your spirit always goes to when you’re sleeping.


ever since you came to australia, you don’t dream about the house no more. in your dreams, you are somewhere else. somewhere you’ve never even been to or remotely familiar with.


why is that?

3 thoughts on “the one place my spirit always goes to when my body is asleep: what i wrote about at the creative writing workshop

  1. I thought that was a very nice piece of writing. You totally described the surroundings of your house very well 😀 I’ve never really been part of a creative writing workshop like the one you had. One, it’s probably to do with me being shy with my writing and second, everyone has different opinions…and none of them are wrong and so I go with the thought that what I write is never usually wrong 😀

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