Friends, classmates and admirers of the writing of Norma Miraflor gathered on June 22 at the UST Center for Creative Writing and Literary Studies (CCWLS) for a simple memorial to bid her goodbye.
Miraflor, who passed away early last month, finished Litt.B Philosophy from the old Faculty of Philosophy and Letters of the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and served twice as literary editor and once as features editor of the Varsitarian, the university’s official student paper.
She also taught in the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters and worked as a magazine editor and columnist in Manila before moving to Singapore in 1974.
She was editor in chief of MPH Magazines in Singapore till 1990, and ran Media Masters with her husband, Ian Ward, dividing her time between Singapore and Sydney. Her first novel and a collection of essays were published by Media Masters, and two short story collections were published in the Philippines.
The CCWLS, with the UST Publishing House and the Varsitarian, also launched Miraflor’s novel, “Available Light,” which was released last year.
Writer Cristina Pantoja Hidalgo, the center’s director and close friend of Miraflor, read a short tribute to Miraflor. This was followed by a brief introduction of the novel by John Jack Wigley, director of the publishing house, and by a reading of excerpts from the book by Ma. Ailil Alvarez, deputy director.
Among the writers who came to pay their respects and get copies of the Miraflor novel were former Sen. Kit Tatad, Rita Gadi, Fely Consignado Rixon, film director Gil Portes, Recah Trinidad, Benjamin Bautista, Gener Reyes and Jimuel Naval; CCWLS resident fellows and associates, namely, Nerisa Guevara, Augusto Aguila, Ferdinand Lopez, Jaymee Siao, Rebecca Añonuevo and Oscar Campomanes; and graduate students in creative writing and literature.
Miraflor is survived by her husband.