Celebrated Ilonggo writer Peter Solis Nery, who was elevated to the Hall of Fame of the Palanca Awards for Literature last year after winning his fifth first prize at the country’s most prestigious literary competition, continues his winning streak by winning yet again another first prize gold, bringing his current Palanca awards collection total to twelve.
Nery, a native of Dumangas, Iloilo and an orthopedic nurse in Los Angeles, Califoria maintains his phenomenal literary ascent with his Hiligaynon short story, “Si Padre Olan kag ang Dios” [“Father Olan and God”], about a priest grappling with the question of God and miracles in the season of El Niño.
Asked if he ever plans to slow down, Nery was quick to answer that his Palanca triumphs may dwindle in the future, but he will definitely continue to write for the Ilonggo and Filipino people.
“No one should resent my continued Palanca success,” Nery said in a statement. “Instead of envying me, people should just celebrate my good fortune because a victory for Peter Solis Nery is really a triumph for Hiligaynon and Filipino literature. I think that I produce pretty marvelous literature, but I wouldn’t know until it is recognized by such groups as the Palanca. Unlike most writers in this country, I am not connected with the academe, and I feel that my works are largely relegated to the dustbin. So, until that neglect is corrected, I think that I will just continue to write for contests and recognition.”
As a way of giving back to the community, Nery has personally funded The Peter Solis Nery Foundation, which aims to promote, preserve, and propagate Hiligaynon literature, and the arts, by sponsoring literary contests and publishing Hiligaynon works.
© Iloilo Metropolitan Times: September 1, 2013