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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

entry arrow11:56 AM | Xerex Xaviera Lives On

Everybody secretly misses the rambunctious tales of Xerex Xaviera from Abante Tonite.

But here's some scarlet consolation. It's finally out, FHM Erotica: Ladies Confessions Special Volume 2. (I don't remember Volume 1, but then again, let's just say I'm not the type who buys FHM, if you know what I mean.) You can't read this on the bus, or in the office, but it's worth the P195 cover price...

... if only because there are stories in there by some of the best young writers we have: Marguerite Alcarazen de Leon, Karl R. De Mesa, Joseph Nacino, Carljoe Javier, Anna Felicia Sanchez-Ishikawa, Lourd Ernest De Veyra, Andrew Paredes, Ramil Digal Gulle, and Norman Wilwayco. That's four Palanca winners doing slow, exquisitely breathless writing.

Why is there a sudden resurgence of erotica these days? I remember a workshop where an esteemed older writer walked out of a session, because she deemed the story under consideration as being way too pornographic. (Okay, I admit it, that story was mine.) Have we reached a turning point in our literary efforts, and unshackled literary prudery? Butch Dalisay used to say, in lamentation: "There's no sex in Philippine literature." Is that changing?

Of course, we had the Ladlad series (volumes 1, 2, and 3 all edited by J. Neil C. Garcia and Danton Remoto), Forbidden Fruit: Women Write the Erotic (edited by Tina Cuyugan), and Eros Pinoy: An Anthology Of Contemporary Erotica in Philippine Art and Poetry (edited by Virgilio Aviado, Ben Cabrera, and Alfred Yuson) from waaaaaaaay back, and many of the works in those anthologies certainly bordered on blushing bedroom antics, but they were rare publishing efforts that were more literary than your typical Penthouse Forum confessions. (I'm talking about the need for one-handed reading.)

Aside from Xerex, the only unabashed outlet for Pinoy sexual reading seemed to be the so-called bomba komiks of long ago.

Now, aside from the FHM issue, we have an upcoming anthology of losing-our-virginity stories and poems edited by Katrina Tuvera, Conchitina Cruz, and Edgar Samar. Some of the stories in Rogue have an erotic bent, especially the last one by Nikki Alfar. And Bing Sitoy, Sarge Lacuesta (who just did a piece for the maiden, ehem, issue of Playboy Philippines), and I have just began writing erotica for a possible anthology of three, to be finished sometime soon. Bing, of course, has been writing erotica for a Danish magazine for some time now, and she tells me "it pays very, very well."

Somebody should collect those Xerex Xaviera columns (15 years of unrivaled perversions!), and make them into a book. Instant bestseller 'yun.

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