Announcing the Commencement of Writing My Second Book

AS announced, I will share here the contents of my Diary, which I dutifully penned down brief recount of each day’s happening during the Invasion of Kuwait by Iraq, from August 2, 1990 until September 22, 1990. I ceased writing after September 22, 1990 because I was left all alone then, the only professional nurse and staff, after the rest of the bulk of the Indian staff left altogether in one go.

It is my wish to turn the stories I will be writing here, expounding on each day’s event, into a full book. My long-time plan to write a book recounting my experiences serving as a nurse in an undermanned hospital all throughout the Invasion of Kuwait by Iraq in August 2, 1990 until the Liberation Day in February 26, 1991, has never been put into action till now.

This was the pocket Diary I used then, but dated 1989, the only one available at that time.

This was the pocket Diary I used then, but dated 1989, the only available at that time.

Book writing is quite daunting, and with my unpredictable mood, and my inability to perfect ‘time management’, despite my efforts, the work is something which I know will never be attended to.

My first ever book, Overseas Filipino Workers, published in August 1997, is a collection of stories I have written for an online column published through Suite101.com, from August 1999 till December 2002. The instant idea to publish a book out of those articles, all pertaining to the affairs of the overseas Filipino workers (OFW), of which I was then one among the ranks of, was easy. The materials were all ready and only funding was needed for the publication. With the help of some members of an electronic group which I was a subscriber, the Overseas Filipino Council (OFC) via Yahoo Groups, in the early 2007, contributing from their pockets half of the printing cost, and my husband shouldering the other half, the book finally got published and out for distribution by August 22, 2007.

The front and back covers of my first ever published book.

The front and back covers of my first ever published book.

The OFW book is visible on the right upper corner of this blog’s page, and if you click the photo, it will take you to the online version, given freely for anyone interested in knowing something about the OFW phenomenon. Hard copies are no longer available. For the history on the actual work involved, and synopsis of the contents, I give you a link to a story I wrote for my LiveJournal blog in September 8, 2007, click here to read it.

 

Over a month ago, I made a conscious effort to strictly regulate my food and medicine intake, as well as my sleeping time, for the purpose of helping my body cope with its unhealthy stance. Now that it is accomplished, my next move is to spend some of my waking time, of only now 12 hours a day (it used to be 20 to 22 hours and sometimes more than 24 hours), into attending to my blog and get serious in writing.

I never have any problem in writing as I write spontaneously and words just come flowing out from my mind. My writing really got honed when I was hired as a Contributing Editor by Suite101.com, one of the earliest portals for writers on the web which got established in 1996, based in Canada. The stories I wrote then just got published, as is.

I now understand that the reason why it took the management to approve my application then was my being a non-English speaking person and they had to be sure that I was really well-versed in writing in English and an expert in grammar and spelling usage. The first of those tests they gave me was an inclusion in a live chat, which I didn’t think then, as such. My instant responses could have been one basis of the final approval of my application, five months after I sent my application. I was paid then, in US dollars, and when I received my first check, I opened a US Dollar account at a local bank when I went for a holiday in December 1999. Check then was being released on a quarterly basis.

About Author

Freda Editha O. Contreras
Writing is a God-given talent which I try to utilize the good way. I used it as a means to earn a living, my very first job after graduating from college, when I got hired as an Information Writer by the Provincial Government of Antique through Governor Enrique A. Zaldivar in January 1982. By profession, I am a Registered Nurse, and was only able to practice it when I got recruited to work in a private hospital in Kuwait. This was in November 1987 and since then I have been living in Kuwait, now retired since June 2002. Because of my knack in writing I got hired in 1994 to write for Kuwait Times and later became an Editor of 'Pinoy News' a weekly supplement of KT. In March 1996 I published the very first independent Filipino newspaper in Kuwait and the Gulf bannered as Pinoy Expat News or PEN. The paper lasted for only 10 weekly issues. This was followed by another publication and came out first as an insert of an ad paper and later as a separate tabloid. I used then 'Pinoy News' as it was my idea the first time it was used for Kuwait Times. This again failed and produced only three weekly issues. I then turned to the Internet and in 1999 I got hired as a Contributing Editor of Suite101.com, a writers' portal on the web. The last of my articles was published December 31, 2002 but my topic 'Overseas Filipino Workers' was still visible until January 2006. All the 38 articles I wrote have been compiled into a book which I published in August 2007. I discovered blogging in 2006 but was not really serious about my writing. I wrote according to my whim. Having this blog under my own domain name is now a welcome development and I plan to concentrate again in writing. As is commonly said: "A writer will always be a writer." http://fredacontreras.com/

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