The thing about December is that it decided to arrive at the tail end of an already terrible year. 2016 has decided to beat us up in terms of brutality (physically and psychically) on top of the everyday violence we already experience as human beings trying to live on this rapidly deteriorating planet.
It probably didn’t help me that December was also the deadline of grades for the first semester, and I had several problematic students that didn’t seem like they were interested in passing the class, no matter how much I wanted to help them. This was the semester with the most number of students that I’ve failed, and it was the first time I ever had to give a 4.00 to a student – which meant that they had to sit for removal exams next semester.
However, December also gave me a pleasant surprise: my book, Instructions on How to Disappear, appeared (no pun intended) in the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Top 10 Books of 2016, and my publisher, Visprint, has already informed me that they’ll be doing a second printing in January 2017 because the first printing has already sold out.
To say that I am delighted is a pale echo of what I really feel – I’m grateful beyond measure, and I’m thankful that people are responding so positively to my first collection, and I really, really hope that it won’t take another ten years before the next one. *crosses fingers*