I met Yugel Losorata way back when I was still writing for the Manila Times some eight or nine years ago.
We’d bump into each other during showbiz presscons and since I was the noob on the beat, he was the one who introduced me to a lot of other showbiz writers.
I knew of his love for music but it was only a few years back when I discovered how much of a talented musician he really was. When he’s not writing about entertainment scoops, he’d be weaving words and melody together to create songs. His composition “Sandalan” released as the debut single of teenage belter and The Voice Kids alumnus Angel Andal last February. Another composition “Next Big Thing” was released last summer by his band The Pub Forties where he plays bass.
His love for music and talent for writing was what also kept him busy during the quarantine months, and he found solace in creating E-Books. The first of which titled “How To Survive The New Normal (New World, Old World Legacy),” was published through the guidance and support of ePublish Book Hub and is already making rounds worldwide via popular online retailers Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
The e-book is a collection of essays written last summer when ECQ (Enhanced Community Quarantine) was implemented Luzon-wide, and cities in Metro Manila were practically closed down as an antidote to the spread of COVID-19. Losorata opened with an essay about his experience adjusting to home life under quarantine. Then wrote about topics close to his heart, including tribute pieces to the late Pinoy Rock icon Pepe Smith (“Red Hot Chili Pepe”) and basketball icon Robert Jaworski’s popular mantra (“Yesterday’s Never-Say-Die Spirit of Legends”). He also reflected on episodes from his youth (“Flashback from a Fly”) and historical subjects (“The Most Despicable Genocide of All Time,” “Forever Sleeping Beauty”)
“I committed myself to writing books in early April when I realized we’re likely to be in this situation for the long haul. The writing process actually helped me go through the adjustments and allowed me to dig deeper into myself and my thoughts which I think were healthy,” the author explained.
“This book seeks to inspire readers about how the human spirit can hurdle the toughest challenge to human safety and sanity. It shows how fruits can spring forth from human survival instinct and the passion to give glory to the legacy of the past when life was much, much better,” said the book’s editor Millie Vera whom the author considers as his writing mentor.
ePublish Book Hub, represented by operations manager Edgar Portento, made it possible for Losorata to realize this wholesome rapid turnaround from the shackles of the New Normal. It took the author and the team as short as 45 days to get Book 1 off the ground!
The second book, a flash fiction collection, was published last August 16, while a tribute account on the author’s favorite band The Beatles, will be up in the last quarter.
Illustrations included in the books were done by the author’s brother Rockefeller Losorata who currently works in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. His involvement proved personally uplifting as it enabled him to re-practice his craft. He drew the images while on lockdown.
Reader Ellaine Milaflor, among the early buyers of “How To Survive The New Normal,” posted on her Facebook page, “Reading his book is therapeutic for me. As he recounts the events of the past months, not only am I reminded, I also got to think back on where I was, and what I was doing, and how my friends were during those times. It felt like a chat with a sincere friend. Or it’s like a friendly stranger you have a chance encounter with and suddenly finds himself opening up and you gladly welcome it.”
Losorata further commented, “I found both songwriting and writing therapeutic and they have made me survive in my run before and while there’s pandemic. I dreamed of being a book author and not even a globally catastrophic virus could stop it from happening.”
30 MIDNIGHTS OF FLASH FICTION: To Beat the Blues
Author: YUGEL LOSORATA
Illustrator: Rockefeller Losorata
Publication date: August 16, 2020
You can order the ebook by clicking on this link
The effects of COVID-19 shook the entire world in 2020 and brought tremendous fear in the face of an invisible enemy. But it also offered the opportunity to stretch one’s creativity and imagination as most people chose (or were left with no choice but) to stay home in a prolonged stretch unlikely to happen in a pandemic-free world.
That potent combination of agitation and flights of fancy inspired the author of this book to sit down and write his flash fiction collection. His fascination for the strange, the paranormal, the wicked, and the unsettling established the path towards quick, plot-driven stories, with just around 500 to 800 words, or less—one story each night for 30 days. Being a nocturnal person, he found out that there’s something queer about the wee hours that make such time conducive for concocting short but jolting plots.
The flash tales are not necessarily scary for the readers, even as they are confronted with ghoulish images right in their faces. But they kind of leave thoughts that creep through the brain as the narratives abruptly reach their end. Some characters and plot points may have parallels in the real world. This was not intentional except for historical events used merely as subplots to bring the fictional accounts to their proper destinations. Besides, life as we know it can be bluntly scary and the fiction’s motive is to further twist reality to truly serve its literary purpose.
The stories in this book will take you down to some roads travelers fear to trek, yet are lured to explore—roads feared by most travelers, some roads leading to a point of no return. The safety net for the readers is the nature of their travel, as each plot and the words that make it come alive, allowing them the vicarious experience of what they never would dream of being thrown into in real life.
It is also available on Amazon