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Love, Betrayal, On Growing old & Retirememt

‘The two most engaging powers of an author are to make new things familiar, and familiar things new.’ Samuel Johnson
annamanilaNo, I am not the blogger with a published book. Meet 66 year old Annamanila, who blogs at She used to be the editor of my work when I was a researcher at the UP Institute of Small Scale Industries till 1986 when I got fired by the new director. Twenty years passed me by and one day in 2006, I received a comment from Annamanila because of my Philippine Idol post. I was glad to hear from her. A few weeks elapsed, she announced that she started a blog. I groaned. “Oh no, she will read my blog regularly now” but I learned to shrug my “writing skills’ insecurities” off and taking up the challenge to equip myself to be a better writer.

So what is her book all about?

“In Another Dress” reveals in story after story, how she went into blogging as a hedge against retirement jitters and that sure enough it turned out to be something she could do with a passion well into antiquity ““as long as rheumy eyes can still squint and arthritic fingers touch type.”

book-for-retired In her pieces, she reminisced about lost youth, paid tribute to people important to her, philosophized about her losses, made mountains of small mounds of achievement, laughed at her spotty record as mom-wife-friend-worker, and brooded over left-over dreams and aspirations.

Anna Manila revealed that she began writing her ode-to-old stories hoping to discover the secret to being old and happy but admitted she had not found this after two and half years trying. Nevertheless, she had learned ““without doubt that if I loved myself, I shouldn’t care how old I get.”

In Another Dress , whose title is a take-off from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s ““… Age, much like youth is opportunity, though in another dress,” is divided into four sets of stories: (1) To Keep the Heart Unwrinkled; (2) Simpering, Whimpering, Blundering Youth; (3) My Spotty Mom Record and Other Middling Stories; and (4) Tales of Women in Love and in Trouble (as told to Annamanila).

This afternoon, I gave a short oral review of the book. I believe that a great personal blog or writer has at least two qualities –

1. When you write about yourself, it’s never just yourself. It can’t be. Who the hell are you anyway? Why should your life be so interesting to people? It could be interesting only up to a certain point. There’s got to be a point when you are no longer talking about yourself. Or even when you are, there are points others can relate to .

2. Educate , enlighten and entertain. Have a way to make them accessible and funny.

Now being funny in my entries is something I can’t do yet. Being a blogger is a work in progress but Annamanila has all those qualities as a blogger and writer. She started blogging at 63 and so can you. If you need a role model, Annamanila is the writer to be, the blogger that yu can be. She is a role model to emulate.

So yes, buy this book at National Book Store for 350 pesos.

This book is worth every centavo as you can easily identify yourself in some of her stories on loss, betrayal, death, youth, getting old , being a mother , love, marriage , friendship and retirement. Even my husband is very impressed with her writing. I wonder what part he read.

I don’t have plans to publish a book at the moment but I do plan to come out with an ebook because my archives are full of entries that are hard to dig into.

For my Philippine-based readers, I am giving away a copy of her book which I bought just to create buzz for my friend. Just comment below why you think you deserve a free copy.

16 thoughts on “Love, Betrayal, On Growing old & Retirememt”

  1. I believe I deserve to win this book because just like what you have mentioned, I know I can identify with a lot of her stories. I also love to write but I’m not a good writer. I want to win this book and read her book so that I could also learn how to write well. I’m sure there’s a lot to learn from her book.

  2. Because I am the Queen of Procrastination with a Million Excuses when it comes to blogging again, and maybe, just maybe, this will be my inspiration and ticket out of the rut I’m in. Help!

  3. i wish to have a good book and a companion on my 44th bday this coming december 5. i’m fond of reading blogs and wondering if i can start one too. thanks for the inspiration.

  4. I wish to have a good book and a companion on my 44th bday this coming dec. 5. i’m fond of reading blogs and hope can start writing one too. thanks for the inspiration and motivation.

  5. Wow…I want to have a copy of this book. Reasons? I am just a book lover specially those that inspire and motivate me to become a better person. She is a woman with wisdom because of her experience and age and I’m sure there’s a lot to learn from her.
    I really hope to get a copy of this….:) Been coming here regularly since I found this inspiring blog. 🙂 – Creative Thoughts – Entertainment Site

  6. I deserve to have a copy actually my Mom deserves to have a copy to make her feel that she’s not the only one getting old and that aging can be beautiful if you welcome it gracefully.

    She’s going through a tough time right now, having a Dad who only has 3 months to live (we learned just last week) because of Lymphoma, loosing her Job, her having Diabetes and too many to mention.

    I think this book will help her see life in a new perspective.

    Thank you.

  7. I think I deserve to have a copy of the book because honestly I do really fear aging.. I always whine about the lines on my forehead yet I do not want those derma treatment. I think a good book such as this will help me rethink about aging and spend each moment happily and without any fear..

  8. Wow. A contest over a copy of my libro-librohan!

    Thanks Noems — kaya ba malapit nang maubos ang mga copies — because of this incredible promo?! 🙂

    Congrats, Irish. You deserve to win. Thanks all of you guys who joined Noems’ contest. Made me soar to cloud 10!

    Anna Cunanan, if you send your email address to me at [email protected], let us see how we can arrange for a copy of IN ANOTHER DRESS for your mom.
    .-= annamanila´s last blog ..In Another Dress: A (Biased) Book Review, Sort of =-.

  9. …may be you can consider giving me a copy. I love reading but this past months i cannot even finish reading until to the end a single article with more than ten pages…may be just may be the book could help de- clog webs inside me and help me cling on to my diminishing dreams after the build up of frustrations…

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