Events: The first annual Joi Barrios Writers Workshop is now open for applications

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Bookshelf PH is now accepting applications for its first annual Joi Barrios Writers Workshop.

The namesake of the workshop is facilitator Joi Barrios, a poet, scriptwriter, activist, translator, senior lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley, and one of the pioneering authors in the romance genre in the Philippines.

To continue the advancement of Filipino romance writing in the Philippines, the Joi Barrios Writers Workshop is looking for romance authors from all sub-genres of the field, including contemporary, historical, young adult, literary, speculative fiction, and more. 


The Bookshelf PH team is proud to have partnered with Joi Barrios to organize this workshop.

“Ms. Barrios is of course a legend in the nation’s romance writing. She was one of the most prolific and popular Filipino authors during the golden days of the genre. To produce a workshop with her at the helm means that participating fellows will get incredible knowledge on storytelling, writing, and publishing,” said Gloryen Limbo, who arranged the partnership on behalf of book and ebook marketplace, Bookshelf PH

The writing workshop will span four weeks beginning July 12 and ending July 30, 2021 convene thrice a week, and feature twelve to fifteen writers. The workshop will be held entirely virtually to keep all fellows, facilitators, and guest speakers safe amid the ongoing pandemic. 

The goal of the workshop is to produce 2-3 short stories or a novelette by the end of the term. Applicants are thus encouraged to have a representative short story or or substantial work-in-progress. Applicants without a manuscript can still be considered, so long as they can commit to creating the target content during the duration of the workshop.

The Joi Barrios Writers Workshop will be built around the traditional workshop focused around the craft of writing and discussions on how to write effective stories. These workshops will be supplemented with lectures and talks around the profession of writing. The workshop wants to produce fellows who are not only skilled writers of romance fiction, but also successfully find wide readership. 

In addition to the workshop itself, participants will be designated as Joi Barrios fellows, receive continuing access to professional development support as program alumni, and digital, print, or audio distribution via Bookshelf PH. 

To apply, interested writers should send in a cover letter, resume or CV, and a writing sample – either a representative short story or substantial work in progress – to Deadline for applications is Friday, July 9. Writers from undergraduate and graduate creative writing programs are especially encouraged to apply.


Bookshelf PH aims to bring the best of Filipino books to local readers alongside the global bestsellers whose impact we aspire to emulate through our boutique store, and more importantly, our community. We aim to promote great Filipino books in fiction and non-fiction. The goal is to produce a rich literature that will contribute to individual empowerment, and in the aggregate, nation-building. At the core of these aspirations is the belief that the surest and simplest path to personal and professional growth is through reading.


Dr. Barrios-Leblanc, a Filipino lecturer, studies Philippine women’s literature and theater. Her works includes Ang Pagiging Babae ay Pamumuhay sa Panahon ng Digma, published by UP Press in 1990; Ang Aking Prince Charming Bailaya: Mga Dula Para sa Kababaihan (1997); Minatamis at iba pang Tula ng Pag-ibig (1998); and Prince Charming at iba pang Nobelang Romantiko (2001). She is currently working on Unexpected Radicals: Home, Work and Street Struggles in the works of Tagalog women writers, 1920-1945),  focusing on poetry and fiction published in Liwayway and Taliba magazines. Additionally, she has published articles on street theater, three language textbooks, a dictionary, three poetry collections, a book of novelettes, and a book of her collected plays. 

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