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Editor's Pick

Don’t Tell Anyone: Literary Smut by Ian Rosales Casocot and Shakira Andrea Sison

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Anvil Publishing recently launched Pride Press, an imprint that caters to LGBTQIA+ writings. The imprint’s area of editorial focus will encompass literary and genre works of high quality by gay, lesbian, transgender, etc. writers. As its first offering, an anthology of erotic homosexual stories, Don’t Tell Anyone: Literary Smut, was released during the Manila International Book Fair in September.

Much has been said and done about LGBT awareness—fostering pride in and respect for all LGBT communities—in the Philippines. Despite all these, gay and lesbian sex issues still remain taboo.

In Don’t Tell Anyone: Literary Smut, Ian Rosales Casocot and Shakira Andrea Sison counter the veto with their shameless yet eloquent accounts of Filipino gay and lesbian loving.

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If sex remains taboo in the Philippines, gay and lesbian sex is still even more unspoken. “How do you do it?” is still the most common question queer Pinoys get. Even after that question is answered, there is still the popular notion that only heterosexual sex is “the real thing,” and anything else is just a deviation or an attempt to replicate the male-female dynamic of human contact.

This book makes up for this history of invalidation. An unprecedented dirty dozen, Sison’s and Casocot’s stories are direct and unflinching. They make no qualms or apologies about the nature of sex between two men or between two women. They explore courtship and contact between same-gender partners with humor, hesitation and obsession, and eventually take the reader with them as they reel from heartbreak.

Whether you consider straight sex “the real thing,” or are among the LGBTQ community that is hungry for a true account of Filipino gay and lesbian loving, one thing this collection and its characters do, over and over without exhaustion, is to keep on trying.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Ian Rosales Casocot is a novelist and teaches film, literature, and creative writing in Silliman University in Dumaguete City. He has won the Palanca Award several times, and has also won the NVM Gonzalez Prize, a PBBY Salanga Writers Prize, and the FullyBooked/Neil Gaiman Philippine Graphic/Fiction Prize for his fiction. His books include FutureShock Prose: An Anthology of Young Writers and New Literatures, Old Movies and Other Stories, Beautiful Accidents: Stories, Heartbreak & Magic: Stories of Fantasy and Horror, Inday Goes About Her Day, and The Lives of Bamboo Girls. In 2008, his novel Sugar Land was longlisted in the Man Asian Literary Prize, the biggest prize for the novel in English in Asia. He was a writer-in-residence for the International Writers Program of the University of Iowa in the United States in 2010. He is currently the coordinator of the Edilberto and Edith Tiempo Creative Writing Center.

Shakira Andrea C. Sison has won two Palanca Awards in the essay category. As a columnist for Rappler, she has also been honoured with a St. Scholastica’s College Hildegarde Award and a Lasallian Scholarium Award. She was a fellow for Poetry in English in the University of the Philippines National Writers’ Workshop in 1999. Shakira holds a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of the Philippines Los Baños and works in finance in New York City.

 

 

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