Since mid-March this year, the whole of Luzon, its associated islands, and parts of Visayas, were placed under an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) due to the threat of the 2019 N-coronavirus (COVID-19). This had effectively put much of the country in total lockdown, limiting the movement of the general population to securing bare necessities, going to work, and responding to health-related emergencies, in response to the pandemic.

Additional lockdown restrictions across the country likewise mandated the temporary closure of non-essential shops and businesses, including those in the publishing and creative industries. As a community response to these changes, the same disruption gave way to alternative modes of interactions within the book trade and creative circles, among others, during the COVID-19 quarantine.

As the government agency mandated to support the book development and publishing sector, the National Book Development Board (NBDB) sees the importance of gathering narratives and connecting it to the collective memory and cultural experiences of Filipinos during this extraordinary time. The NBDB encourages writers, authors, illustrators, and content creators to send us your observations, narratives, and experiences about our time in quarantine, to be part of an upcoming online special edition of Bookwatch 2020.

Your submissions can be in the form of any of the following: journal entries, long-form essays, photographs, photo essays, short stories, poetry, graphic art, comics, or any other content based genre.

We are interested in submissions that speak our narratives and experiences about or while in quarantine.

Call for Submissions

We invite writers, authors, illustrators, and content creators to send to us your everyday anecdotes of your observations, narratives, and experiences of our time in quarantine. We are interested in submissions that speak our narratives and experiences about and while in quarantine.

Content Format

Your contributions can be in any Philippine language or in English, and may be in the form of any of the following: journal entries, long-form essays, photographs, photo essays, short stories, poetry, graphic art, comics, or any other content based genre.

– Journal entries (in any Philippine language or English, at least 800-1000 words)
– Long-form essays (in any Philippine language or English, 2000-5000 words)
– Photographs (up to 10pix, in JPG/PNG, at least 3MB at 150dpi, with accompanying 100-word description of the work)
– Photo essay (6pix to 10pix, in JPG/PNG, at least 3MB at 150dpi, with accompanying 300-word essay)
– Poetry (in any Philippine language or English, at least 12 lines)
– Graphic art (in JPG/PNG, at least 3MB at 150dpi, with accompanying 100-word description of the work)
– Short stories (in any Philippine language or English, at least 1000 words)
– Comics (at least 27 frames, in JPG/PNG, at least 3MB at 150dpi)

Deadline line for the first batch of contributions is 07 August 2020.

Each approved contribution will receive an honorarium of P5,000.00 subject to applicable government taxes. Each individual/contributor/stakeholder will only be allowed one submission for the duration of the project.

Please send your contributions to helpdesk@nbdb.gov.ph.