Friday, September 14, 2012

A Postscript on the 2nd ReaderCon

I owe this one to Honey de Peralta, especially, because I have not responded to her email properly. And like what I've said in previous posts, I've been sidelined from blogging due to domestic and work related duties. Dear Me. When it rains, it pours!

So I begin.

A big congratulations to the organizers of the 2nd ReaderCon: the National Book Development Board, the Filipinas Heritage Library and the collective group of Filipino Book Bloggers! Organizing an event is not a walk in the park but you guys made it look so easy. Your passion for books and reading fueled the success of the 2nd ReaderCon. May you continue to influence and inspire readers, especially the very young ones, to love books and nurture in themselves a culture of reading. The 1st Readers Choice Award was pretty cool especially that in the category for children's books children were judges. Schools and learning communities working with and for children should learn from this example. If we envision a reading nation, we need to involve our kids in deciding, choosing and creating books and reading materials. Let's start them young! Maybe next year, a young adult (YA) novel category can be judged by teens?

In the panel where I sat in to present the role of the library to readers and book lovers, a clamor for more books in Filipino surfaced. English novels by Filipino writers, for teens and older or more mature readers, are readily available. There is a steady production and distribution of such materials. The Tagalog novel for YA is a gap in the reading scheme. The industry has its work cut out for them.

I enjoyed seating in the teachers and reading program panel too. One's love for reading does not grow like mushrooms after the rain. Reading, being a complex activity, needs to be taught in formal settings like the classroom. Teachers are natural reading instructors. While there are expensive reading programs presented during the panel, I was impressed at the innovative reading program run by a public school in Caloocan.  CENTEX's reading program is a classic example of government and non-government project.

I did not finish the whole event and missed on panels by authors after lunch. I did buy books, bookmarks and a handsome Harry Potter book pendant. What joy! Looking forward to the next ReaderCon!

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