Award-winning author shares joys, challenges of literary publication

Cebuano author, poet, and editor Cecilia Manguerra Brainard captivated the audience with her insights into the intricate journey of literary publication during her talk titled “On Fiction and Other Writings” held at the UP Cebu Performing Arts Hall (PAH) on February 14, 2024.

Brainard, celebrated for her literary achievements, emphasized the importance of authenticity and following one’s heart rather than chasing trends. “You don’t have to follow what you think will hit. You have to follow your heart,” she advised aspiring literary writers.

She delved into her remarkable experiences as a Filipino-American writer, shedding light on the realities and challenges of literary publication, with a particular focus on the various editions of her acclaimed novel “When the Rainbow Goddess Wept.”

Members of UP Cebu’s TINTA group, including Eulla Cinco, Natalie Joyce Senaca, and CJ Pingal, mesmerized the audience with captivating renditions of Brainard’s renowned literary pieces. They performed excerpts from her works, including two poignant poems, “My Mother’s Skirt” and “Do You Remember?” along with a compelling chapter excerpt titled “Rumblings of War” from her novel “When the Rainbow Goddess Wept.”

In a gesture of generosity, Brainard also donated copies of her books to the UP Cebu Library, enriching the literary collection and fostering a deeper appreciation for Filipino and Cebuano art, history, and literature.

Her lecture was made possible through the collaborative efforts of the UP Cebu Creative Program, along with the College of Communication, Art, and Design, the Communication Program, Sugbuanon Literature (LIT 4) Course, and UP Cebu TINTA, reflecting a commitment to nurturing and celebrating literary talent in the community.