The Top 20 Most Underrated Taylor Swift Songs

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If I haven’t said it here yet, well I will, I’ve been a dedicated Taylor Swift fan for like 10 years now and I’m not ashamed of it because she’s one of the most incredible persons in the whole wide world. That statement is for another article but right now, we’re going to talk about the 20 best Taylor Swift songs that you’re probably unfamiliar with if you’re not that kind of a fan like me. It’s undeniable that she has a lot of catchy and famous songs but she also has other equally beautiful songs that should be given more recognition. That’s only my opinion, and here I am trying to share it with you and probably convince you as well.

Getting on with the list, first on it is:

1. I’D LIE

One of the best unreleased Taylor Swift songs, I’d Lie remains a favourite among die-hard Swifties. This song is all of us at times when we lie about liking someone. But the best thing about it is how it’s cleverly written. It’s actually like a sweet movie flick with twists. I won’t give justice describing it so go check it out for yourself.

Favourite line: “He’ll never fall in love he swears, as he runs his fingers through his hair, I’m laughing ’cause I hope he’s wrong.”

2. SWEET TEA AND GOD’S GRACES

This unreleased song takes you back to that beautiful summer where you met your first love. That’s the vibe you get from here. But more than that, the song screams of maturity as Swift sings how this love was like a sweet lesson that gave her heartbreak and taught her how to get back up as a better person. It’s amazing how Swift can articulate feelings we sometimes can’t express.

Favourite line: “You can love like a sinner and lose like a winner, nothing’s shatterproof. You can crash and burn and come back someone new and that’s what I learned from you.”

3. TIED TOGETHER WITH A SMILE

From her self-titled first album, this song is about Swift’s friend who suffered from anorexia. The song talks about this girl who everyone thinks is doing great but is actually dying inside. Everyone thinks that Taylor just writes about her love life but there she was writing for a friend to assure her and let the whole world know that she’s beautiful and should be loved no matter what. Every time I hear this, I get a lump in my throat because the weight of this song is just too much you just can’t dismiss it.

Favourite line: “Seems the only one who doesn’t see your beauty, is the face in the mirror looking back at you.”

4. STAY BEAUTIFUL

Another one from her first album, this four-minute heartfelt song is about a guy Taylor had a crush on in high school. Note that she only had a crush on him and didn’t date him. Taylor said back then that most of her songs come from observation than actual experience. This song may sound just another cutesy tune but I really like the maturity in it. She sings in it that she likes this guy and she wants him to stay beautiful and have a good life even if she’s not part of it. Nice to think of you, girl!

Favourite line: “And when you find everything you looked for, I hope your life will lead you back to my door, oh, but if it don’t, stay beautiful.”

5. THE OUTSIDE

This song depicts an unwanted Swift struggling to get hold of opportunities to make her dreams come true. Anyone struggling to reach their dreams could have this song as an anthem for sad hopeless nights. It actually helps me get by from time to time knowing that someone as rich, famous and talented as Swift once became an outsider.

Favourite line: “So how can I ever try to be better? Nobody ever lets me in.”

6. I’M ONLY ME WHEN I’M WITH YOU

This country pop track has a laid-back setting and shows a more friend and family-oriented side of Swift. The music video features her friends including her well-known best friend, Abigail Anderson, and her family. Taylor sings here how she feels free and true to herself when she’s with these people. We definitely need songs like this in our life once in a while.

Favourite line: “I’m only up when you’re not down, don’t wanna fly if you’re still on the ground.”

7. SUPERSTAR

This gentle sweet song off of the Fearless Platinum Edition is one of Taylor’s most relatable as she channels here her inner wide-eyed fangirl who’s desperately in love with a superstar. That’s all of us, aren’t we? We’ve all been dreaming about someone out of our reach whether we like to admit it or not and Taylor is no different even if she’s a superstar herself.

Favourite line: “And I knew from the first note played, I’d be breaking all my roles to see you.”

8. HEY STEPHEN

I know this Fearless album song is somewhat like the other upbeat Swiftie songs such as You Belong With Me in which she’s wishing a guy would like her back, but hey, who wouldn’t like how catchy this song is! Taylor isn’t famous for songs that would make you feel in love but this one will definitely make you feel like getting hit by Cupid and I completely do not understand why this isn’t as loved as Love Story! Taylor in love is indulging!

Favourite line: “Hey Stephen, I could give you fifty reasons why I should be the one you choose. All those other girls, well they’re beautiful, but would they write a song for you?”

9. BREATHE

Breathe is a country pop song co-written with singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat and was included in Swift’s second album. This song is calm and beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time. It talks about having to say goodbye to a friend without blaming anyone for the fallout. Sometimes that’s the most tragic part, when it’s no one’s fault. It’s one of my favourite collaborations ever. Two angelic voices singing together feels like heaven in this one.

Favourite line: “People are people and sometimes we change our minds, but it’s killing me to see you go after all this time.”

10. TELL ME WHY

Another Fearless album track, Tell Me Why kicks some ass with its biting lyrics expressing frustration over someone’s attitude. We all come to a point where we ask why someone treats us the way he or she does and in times like that, this song is a perfect way to bring out all the frustrations. When I’m so confused about a lot of things I just play this tune out loud and sing and shout, then I feel much better afterwards. Try it out for yourself.

Favourite line: “And here’s to you and your temper, yes I remember what you said last night, and I know that you see what you’re doing to me, tell me why.”

11. THE BEST DAY

The Best Day is Taylor’s loveliest song ever as it is one she wrote for her beloved mother. Mama Andrea Swift has always been supportive of Taylor and her passion for singing and composing songs. She’s Taylor’s first fan and as a fan myself, I kind of feel a motherly connection with Andrea as well. This song proves how loving Taylor is as a daughter and you can’t help but feel connected with it as we ourselves also have parents dear to us. Sing this to your parents and for sure they will appreciate it.

Favourite line: “I know you were on my side even when I was wrong,
And I love you for giving me your eyes, for staying back and watching me shine.”

12. UNTOUCHABLE

This is technically not an original Taylor Swift song because it was actually first written and produced by Luna Halo. Taylor just covered it but changed it quite significantly. It’s pretty unrecognizable from the original version that Luna Halo gave co-writing credit to Taylor. This song shows how good she is at reinventing old songs and making it feel like her own. I respect artists who can do that.

Favourite line: “Untouchable burning brighter than the sun, and when you’re close I feel like coming undone.”

13. LAST KISS

It’s so captivating how intimate this song sounds. It actually feels like you’re reading a personal letter full of desperate and hopeless feelings while listening to this six-minute song from Swift’s third album, Speak Now. It translates anger, frustration and confusion in a very calm way. Like how was that possible? Well, it’s Taylor Swift and she’s a genius.

Favourite line: “So I’ll watch your life in pictures like I used to watch you sleep and I feel you forget me like I used to feel you breathe.”

14. LONG LIVE

Long Live is the last track in Speak Now but definitely not the least. This song can make you feel like a champion. It may seem like an over-the-top prom anthem to other people but the lyrics somehow make you believe that impossible things are possible and you’re going to make it someday. Taylor’s life has had a lot of these winning moments and it’s nice to see her translate these to a song. Let’s celebrate each other’s success!

Favourite line: “If you have children someday
When they point to the pictures
Please tell them my name
Tell them how the crowds went wild
Tell them how I hope they shine.”

15. HOLY GROUND

Holy Ground is the eleventh track in Swift’s fourth studio album, Red. I swear it’s difficult not to get dancing with the song’s storming drum beat. The lyrics is a classic Swift talking about a relationship that ended but you can’t help but feel rejoiceful with the groove that naturally comes out when you hear the driving rhythm of the song. It’s weird and I can’t stop dancing to it.

Favourite line: “Tonight I’m gonna dance like you were in this room. But I don’t wanna dance if I’m not dancing with you.”

16. STARLIGHT

I always imagine a movie scene in which the two main leads are dancing on the dance floor and forgetting about the world whenever I hear this song. It’s that fists-in-the-air love anthem you’d always go back to when you reminisce good memories. Starlight is actually about the ‘romantic adventures of Ethel and Bobby Kennedy after Swift came across a photo of the pair dancing when they were teenagers.’ I forget my worries and genuinely feel happy under the influence of this addictive sound. I badly want this song to become a well-loved classic!

Favourite line: “Like oh my, what a marvellous tune, it was the best night, never would forget how he moved.”

17. YOU ARE IN LOVE

I feel like this bonus track from Taylor’s most acclaimed album, 1989, is the most romantic love song she has ever written. Funny thing is, it’s not actually about her love life, but about her friends Jack Antonoff and Lena Dunham’s relationship. The sincerity, trust, happiness and love in the song are overflowing. It’s the perfect background for a chill Sunday night drinking wine with your loved one.

Favourite line: “You can hear it in the silence, the silence
You can feel it on the way home, way home
You can see it with the lights out, lights out
You are in love, true love.”

18. CLEAN

Swift collaborated with British folktronica singer-songwriter, Imogen Heap, for this haunting electronic tune in her album, 1989. The lyrics of the song is heavily metaphoric and talks about getting out of an addicting love. I adore a poetic Swift that’s why this song is a must hear!

Favourite line: “Rain came pouring down when I was drowning that’s when I could finally breathe.”

19. I WISH YOU WOULD

I’ve always thought this song is like a background to a lot of flashback scenes in my life. It’s sweet, romantic, tragic, badass and lonely all at the same time. The general sound of the song is an ecstasy for me thanks to the thoroughfare synth-pop style of Jack Antonoff. I can’t describe how cool this song is, you gotta hear for yourself.

Favourite line: “You always knew how to push my buttons, you give me everything and nothing.”

20. DON’T BLAME ME

One of the songs from Swift’s latest album, Reputation, Don’t Blame Me is as unapologetic as Swift can be. Fierce Swift is the new trend and this track channels this perfectly with its religious-sounding choruses and stripped back verses. What makes this song different is the drug metaphor that you wouldn’t expect from Swift if this was two years ago. She talks about this generic guy as somewhat like a drug and I swear to God she’s kicking it! Smart choice of words for this song by the way.

Favourite line: “Don’t blame me, your love made me crazy, if it doesn’t, you ain’t doing it right.”

That’s it folks. What do you think about the list? Let me know in the comments section!

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Let’s Talk About Why We Travel

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Travel. That’s a word that always comes up when you ask people about the things they want to do in life. But why do we really want to travel?

These days on my social media feeds, specifically on my Instagram feed, I realize how I just gloss through the contents as everything seems to look the same already including my posts! Everyone is so excited about posting something of themselves in a well-known place to prove that they’ve been there and hoping to get a number of hearts and thumbs-up from people. I must admit, I’m guilty of what I call, Me Tourism.

Recently, I had the incredible opportunity to visit the wonderful Mt. Pinatubo Crater Lake and see its blue water twinkling under the sun and in between fascinatingly formed green hills. It was the beauty created by the second-largest terrestrial eruption of the 20th century and I thought it would be a great place to end my year with a bang! While hiking, I took lots of photos and videos thinking about sharing it immediately once I get home. I did share an album, an edited video montage of the whole adventure and some Instagram photos. I didn’t only get hearts, or thumbs-up, I got shocked emojis from people as well. Mission accomplished I thought.

But then a few days after, I listened to a radio interview and there’s this woman talking about how young people these days go to places just to take pictures of themselves with famous landmarks and share it online. She pointed out that most of us travel with the desire to show it off to people instead of just being in a place and experiencing it, getting to know its people and knowing its culture better.

Damn! That hit me.

Yes I did hike the mountain, I did talk to some locals (our tour guide and some playful Aeta kids), but I asked myself, did I really experience it enough? I did what a normal tourist would have done in the limited time of a tour but something in me says I could have used a lot of that short time talking to more people, knowing more about the place personally and just really feeling the moment rather than capturing every bit of it. I’ve always been that girl with the camera capturing the beauty of things, people and moments around me. There’s no terribly wrong about that, but for some reasons, I regret not being the one experiencing some of those moments for a change. Now I am wondering, what would it be like to do the adventure all over again without any gadgets with me. I bet it would be free of social concerns.

I am not telling anyone to stop posting about their travels, just pointing out that it would be nice for a change for travels to be less about letting people know about it and more about making the most out of the experience.

When you go to places, eat the food there and put down the camera. Appreciate the people and not only the view. Smell it. Feel it. Dig deep into its wonders. Then if you fail to take any photos and videos, you could just write about it if you really want others to know about the place and potentially encourage them to visit it as well. I think writing is still a powerful way of encouraging people to do things. Anyway, driving tourism, in most cases, is a nice way to give back to a place and its people for a good time you had there.

I guess what I’m really doing here is making you think about what’s more important to you, is it to truly live in the moment of your travel or to share how everything went by? If you’re one of the people who could balance the two, then good for you. But if you’re just in for the Me Tourism, then maybe your travel was not everything how it should have been.

In the end, Me Tourism is not a crime or a sin. But when you think about it, what does it really serves for? Why do you have to do so much of it? This is where I let you answer for yourself.

A Letter to Fans from Another Fan

You are a fan and you don’t own your idols.

I am not addressing this to the entirety of the population of fans out there, but just to those who seem to be confused about what being a true fan really means.

The Cambridge Dictionary says a fan is someone who admires and supports a person, sport, sports team, etc. The Oxford Dictionaries defines it as a person who has a strong interest in or admiration for a particular person or thing. None of these definitions says a fan can dictate what his or her idol should do and who that idol should be.

You don’t have the right to because you don’t own them; like how you don’t own Taylor Swift, the favourite love-and-hate talk of the town. If you’re a real fan, you’re not one of those people telling her to stop dating men she likes, stop writing what she feels and what she thinks and just stay being America’s sweetheart when clearly she’s done being your good little girl. Recently, Swift released her long-anticipated and most biting album yet, Reputation, and along with it is a note to the fans talking about how it has been being in the public eye and mentioning how ‘her mistakes have been used against her, her heartbreaks have been used as entertainment, and her songwriting has been trivialised as oversharing.’ She has been in our lives since she was 15 that some of us may feel like we own part of hers. But then again, we don’t. No one can control any other people’s lives but themselves; like how Finn Wolfhard has the control over his life on his own and his alone. The 14-year-old Stranger Things actor was recently called out by fans for not greeting them outside his hotel. As Game of Thrones actress Sophie Turner puts it, it does not matter if he’s an actor, he’s a kid first before that and he should be able to ‘grow without feeling like he owes anyone anything for living his childhood dreams.’ Meanwhile locally, actress Maine Mendoza wrote an open letter to fans in November 2017 asking for freedom.

Every one of us, whether you are an actor or not, feel like we need space at some point and we should all be understanding enough if that’s what the person wants. We all have our own selfishness and actors are not an exemption to that. They would want to be away from the screaming and flashing cameras from time to time and no one should ever criticize them for wanting that just because they are public figures. Yes, fans put them to where they are right now and are the reason why they are able to do what they want and earn money at the same time. We as fans buy their albums, concert tickets, stream their shows online and or pay for other merchandises that they put out. However, we should be reminded that it is their art/work, which they have invested in so much, that we are buying and not them nor their lives. We should not act like we can demand to interfere in their personal lives, and if not allowed, we criticize them until they are emotionally drained and are in ruins. If you want some of their time, then go to their fan meetings, shows, and or other official guestings instead of waiting in front of their hotels to invade their privacy. If you are arguing that you don’t have money to buy tickets to shows, matches or what, then that’s your problem. That’s reality and you should work hard to earn some money and see them in their official public appearances if you really want to.

It is time for fans to stop caring too much about the personal lives of their idols. I understand that it is unavoidable for their personal lives to be before the public eye but fans should start it in themselves to realize it should be something we can muse about but not interfere with. We do not know them personally and so we should not bash them for things we may be ill-informed about. Sometimes, I even think it is much better for fans to just care about nothing more than their idols’ work or art. It will be better not only for your idol’s peace of mind but for yours as well. Think before you say or do something that could eventually affect these public figures and most especially do not start a fight and hurt other fans. Before being celebrities and fans, we all are humans first, and as humans, we should always try not to hurt one another.

We should shatter the idea that these are the consequences of being famous and that it comes with their jobs because it isn’t and it shouldn’t. This issue has been around for a long time already and this is definitely not the fault of the advent of the internet, but this problem has obviously been magnified by the social media age. This is bullying and you are not a bully, you are a fan, and that should be enough reason for you to use the power of the internet in reverse to call for a change.

In my own definition, being a fan means supporting your idol in their public endeavours. The key word is support and not bring them down. The word public draws the line between your relationship with your idols. If you want to be beyond that line, then go earn yourself a spot as their friend or what. But if not, then again for those people in the back I will repeat, these public figures’ private lives are something you can muse and be happy or sad about as a fan, but it should never be something you can interfere with. If you still cannot understand this boundary, then maybe you should reassess yourself as a fan and or eventually stop calling yourself as one, if you aren’t really one in the first place.

Chapter Two: Ready, Set, Cut

35mm movie reel and scissors for the final cut

Sometime early August 2017, I decided to shell out money for something I knew I wanted but I was scared of. I don’t know how that mix of feelings exists or why it does. But I just did it. I faced this because at a certain point I know I will regret not doing so, and regret is something I hate more than fear.

This made me basically stop buying fries, burgers, pizzas, shakes and other comfort food just to cut on my spending and make up for the money I spent paying the registration fee for the first Rebelde Non-linear Editing Class. Because you see, I’m an adult who doesn’t want to ask money from my parents and who insists on relying solely on my humble entry-level job pay. But hey guess what, I don’t care about it. All I can think about that time was my love for film. Film was taking over my life and I don’t care whatever it takes just to get to know it better. I was in love.

That sounds foolish, right? Just like any other love, it’s hard. But it’s beautiful.

I’ve been making short films since college and the part of it that I like so much but didn’t have the courage to take on yet was film editing. I love everything about it; the way it looks like a puzzle, the quiet environment while you work on it, the way music complements it and many more aspects of it. Sometimes I even think I love it more than writing because the fulfilment of seeing its end product is different from just reading a finished script.

I do direct, write, shoot, but when it comes to editing, I always pass it on to others because I always thought I’m not good at it. But I figured out that learning film editing is something that will complete me as a filmmaker. So why not step up my game now?

It was a month-long getting to know stage with film editing and with the people who love it as much as I do. There was Angela, Carlo, Rolls, Alyanna, the Rebelde peeps and most especially Direc Thop Nazareno, who was our instructor for the class. Thop has been an editor and director for indie films such as the 2013 Cinemalaya short film Eyeball and the 2017 Cinemalaya full-length feature Kiko Boksingero.

I think it was especially easy and comfortable for me to learn film editing because it was Thop who taught me. He was this small dude sitting quietly at the end of the table when I first entered the lecture room and it was difficult to read him. We were sitting far from him and the first thing he told us was to come closer because he said he was this ‘shy person,’ and just with that, I identified with him already which then continued on throughout the course. I especially saw a great deal of his love for filmmaking which was totally cool. He knows the struggles of an aspiring filmmaker and it felt like he really understands someone like me and so it was especially interesting to learn from someone like him.

I hope he knows he’s a great teacher. I wish someone told him.

Because I didn’t, so….yeah

But nevertheless, everything he imparted to us will stay with me.

The first thing he taught us was that every cut should have a meaning behind it. The Kuleshov effect shows the movie magic in which partnering a shot with different other shots can create many different meanings. I firmly believe that films should be created not just for the sake of creating one and making money. Every part of it should tell a story and should give out a message one way or the other.

He also said that time and tempo are important. You should know when to go fast, normal, and or when to take it slow. You can’t always be too fast. Give the story time to breathe. You can take it slow but be sure you know when to peak. But whatever it is, let the story and feeling guide your pace.

He stressed out that an editor should cut and put pieces together based on logic. Even if you don’t have the script as a guide, or maybe you don’t know the whole story yet or the director hasn’t given any directions, you as an editor should tell the story in your own way first, in the way you perceive it. You may not know, the director may like your take on it. If he doesn’t, then that’s when you change it the way he wants. Anyway, directors always have the last say. But at least you tried to have your own input. You have a vision of your own. Remember, you are an editor, not a clicker or a robot who just follows everything the director says without contributing any creative ideas.

The last part of Thop’s editing lecture was about continuity. An edit should be fluid. Every cut should connect well with the next one. It is advisable to cut on action to avoid awkward or very eye-stealing cuts or transitions. But really, there are many ways to connect one shot or scene from another and some of them are like magic to me.

I really believe that film editing is like magic. It gives life to the story. It can make you see impossible things happen. It can show you wonders you’ve never imagined.

I’m glad to have learned how to make this magic and I want to be a master of it.

Thop made me want to be a master of it and stop hesitating doing things I want to do. I have always waited for things to happen to me because I always thought I’m still not ready. But I remember him telling me I will never be ready and so all there’s left to do is to keep going no matter what. Just shoot. Just make more films. Just do it. That’s the best thing I learned from him and from this wonderful class.

My First Baby

Hi there! This is a short film I made with my college friends for fun three years ago. I never got the chance to put this out and now I figured out I should just post it on YouTube for people to see. This film is my very first baby in college and so I’ve been very protective of it for years. But now I’m ready to let it go. I hope you like it.

Synopsis: A struggling writer overhears a conversation in a cafe that would eventually inspire her to write something.

Directed by: Kimberly Ilaya and Joanna Reyes
Written by: Kimberly Ilaya
Edited by: Angelica Fae Redita
Starring: Ralyn Belay, Cholo Damian, RM Miclat and Trisha Perez
Music: Rosie by Janica De Castro, Taste by Cholo Damian, and Ragtime by Paul Casiano
Cinematographers: Angelica Fae Redita, Louise Litonjua, Pam Asis and Ann Margaret Miguel
Production Manager: Adele Oqueriza
Special thanks to: Macky Macarayan and Florence Rosini

My First Music Video

Sharing to you the first music video I directed and edited. Hope you like it. If you do, please like and follow Janica De Castro on all of her social media pages. Here’s to more good music!

Director: Kimberly Ilaya
Editor: Kimberly Ilaya
Camera Operators: Kimberly Ilaya and Adele Oqueriza
Production Designer: Adele Oqueriza

Chapter One: Ready, Set, Write

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Sunday afternoon in the company of sunshine in my room, I sit there listening to different kinds of music from old to new, from classical to rock. I’ve got my pen and notebook on my lap. I let the music get into me, into my mind, heart and soul. Then I create a short story based on what I feel right then and there. This simple writing activity has been a routine for me since joining Sir Clodualdo Del Mundo’s script development and writing workshop organized by the Film Development Council in an attempt to nurture the talent of current and aspiring screenwriters.

Sir Doy, as what we call him, is a well-known Filipino screenwriter, director, and author. Some of his famous screenplays are the classics such as Maynila: Sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag, Itim, Kisapmata, and Batch ‘81.

We were required to send a resume for pre-selection of the participants and I swear to God I didn’t actually expect to be chosen. Up to 20 participants was the limit and I told myself there are a lot of good writers out there who already have more advanced experience than me, I’d probably be lucky enough if I even get in the top 50. I heard nothing from FDCP for ten days after I signed up but I kept waiting with a bit of desperate prayers. You just don’t give up your dream that easy. You just don’t.

And then there it was, 10 days before the workshop, I got that congratulatory email saying “You’ve been selected blah blah blah!” Imagine me jumping up and down on my bed!

Now fast forward to August 18, the first day of the two-day workshop, I pretty much entered Cinematheque Manila thinking if I should really be there. You know that self-doubt moments just before important events, well, that happens to me. A lot. Sure thing. But one thing I never do is back out when I’m already there.

Who will be my classmates? Will they be super good? Will I look pathetic? Will I be able to impress them? Is Sir Doy a good teacher? Is he too strict and hard to deal with?

These were the questions filling my mind while biting my lip and patiently waiting for the class to start because apparently, I was too early. Those were nonsense questions that I shouldn’t have bothered myself with because thank God, I realized they were actually nothing to worry about.

Listening to Sir Doy was like listening to my grandpa on the balcony telling old stories. I felt very comfortable learning from him. The first thing he taught us was to write stories that bring out humanity. Stories that affect people, move people, and make them counter things like the prevalent violence and killings everywhere in the world right now. He also pointed out that films should create and not destroy.

Right at that moment I missed being a student. Terribly. Everything felt the same. It’s just that my classmates were not of my age. There were different types of people in that class. A screenwriting professor, a news writer, a founder of a film camp, a television show writer, a simple girl who just writes stories in her bedroom, and many more who have the same writing passion as me. This was actually my first professional writing workshop and it felt surreal being in the same room with people who could understand that writing weirdness others may not.

I’ve always believed that if you have real passion, you don’t need much for other people to like you. That’s why I was already in awe of those people around me despite just meeting them for the first time. I was in awe to learn that screenwriting really has no definite format, you just need to make it easy for the people involved in the film to understand how the story should go, how it should look like and how it should feel like. I was in awe to learn the limitations of a writer; that sometimes you do not have to give too much detail; just let the cast and crew have the creative freedom to interpret the screenplay on their own. I was in awe to realize that you will write and put your heart and soul into every story but not all of them will be turned into film.

That’s okay.

That’s reality.

What’s important is that you are creating something you love and you never know, maybe the right time for it is just yet to come. Stories never grow old anyway.

On our second day, August 25, we read and discussed the short screenplays we developed during the workshop. There were different kinds of stories. There was drama. Comedy. Action. Experimental. Some were deep. Some were just above the surface. Mine was in between. It was the first time I allowed my screenplay to be projected on a white screen for people to read at the same time. I felt kind of naked for a while, but proud afterwards. It was nice to see people talk about your story, your characters, your made-up world and you. I thought it would hurt. But it did not. So you, who’s still afraid to let people see your masterpiece, stop keeping your greatness to yourself and go take the pleasure of learning from the praises and criticisms of your readers. Because why not.

It also helps to think you are great. It makes you open yourself to possibilities. And when your idea of greatness gets shattered afterwards, which has a hundred percent probability by the way, get back up. Find another view of greatness, or maybe, make people see another view of greatness. Writing takes a lot of twist and turns, but it’s very rewarding when you get there.

I’m still on the road and is not yet at my destination. As I get drained, an experience like this is a station stop to get me filled up again. What a nice fuel fill indeed.

Thank you FDCP for initiatives like this that nurture aspiring filmmakers like us. Lastly, thank you Sir Doy for your films, passion and experiences. Thank you for your writing. Thank you for sharing it. I hope to do it as well in time. Again. Thank you.