Artist Spotlight: Ron Canimo, Author of ‘Mga Tala at Tula’
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Artist Spotlight: Ron Canimo, Filipino Poet & Author of ‘Mga Tala at Tula’

Ron Canimo Author of Mga Tala at Tula

In the realm of literature, there are writers who pen stories not just to narrate but also to offer solace and healing.

Meet John Roniel A. Canimo, or simply Ron Canimo, a Filipino poet and author from Pampanga whose literary journey is imbued with the ethos of healing linked with tinges of empathy, compassion, and deep understanding.

Throughout his childhood, books were his comfort, so, at the tender age of five, he first stepped into the labyrinth of literary wonders through a poetry recitation contest. Although he didn’t clinch the victory, Ron gave it another shot by venturing into sports writing in a campus publication during his fifth grade.

Ron Canimo
Photo by Ron Canimo

This early dalliance with words ignited his love for reading Filipino-authored books written by Bob Ong, Ricky Lee, Virgilio Almario, Lualhati Bautista, and Norman Wilwayco; these works he admired until he reached high school.

In 2020, Ron was able to publish his book in December with the title “Mga Tala at Tula (Stars and Poetry).” Followed by its sequels “Sa Buwan Kita Natagpuan (I Found You on the Moon)” in 2021 and “Ikaw Sa Bawat Araw (You [for] Every Day)” in 2022.

Ron Canimo
Photo by Ron Canimo

On Mastering Poetry Writing

Mga Tala at Tula” is a collection of Ron’s prose and poetry in pursuit of healing its readers’ mental scars through introspective narratives on heartbreak, rejection, and personal shortcomings.

“I believe that we need to tell the painful events in our lives, so they don't remain trapped in our hearts, so they lighten, and so they heal... I believe that art and literature are among the most powerful remedies for healing these wounds,” Ron said.

Ron Canimo
Photo by Ron Canimo

He collaborated with Finland-based artist Erikka Myles Aurea, also known as Sadaurea, for his book’s art concept. On top of this, he also worked with emerging female artists and independent creatives to translate his masterpieces into captivating visuals.

Ron shared that he finds inspiration to write the most during moments of hopefulness. He loves to write pieces about themes of love, dreams, and aspirations; on the other hand, he is equally known for his solitary, affirming, and comforting pieces when he is bogged down by frustration or weariness.

“My purpose for writing is to heal my innermost self, and eventually help others find healing through my words. I want to remind them that they are not alone, their feelings are valid, and that I can relate to them.”

For those working in the creative industry, having some sort of ritual is common in order to nourish their creative juices and block out distractions. For Ron, he loves to work in a tidy space accompanied by Filipino music or listen to a random episode of the American TV series “Friends” softly playing in the background. Remarkably, he revealed that crafting a literary piece typically takes him about an hour to finish.

One of the most intriguing aspects of every artist’s work is their creative process. As for Ron, his creativity comes spontaneously when he’s writing under the night skies, as his artistic spirit feels most alive in the evening. When he’s in his creative zone, he thinks that he’s tapping someone else’s vivid dreams, careless mistakes, and bitter disappointments.

“I continue writing until I experience a sense of depersonalization—the moment when you see yourself from the outside, in your purest form.”

Hence, “Mga Tala at Tula” was born. Ron shared that his favorite piece in this collection is “Hintayan,” a piece inspired by his personal story.

“[This] is dedicated to those who were treated like a ‘waiting shed’ rather than a destination... Although the experience broke my heart, writing about it brought healing not only to me but also, I believe, to others who have gone through a similar phase.”

Ron Canimo
Photo by Ron Canimo

Financial Reality of Being a Writer

As responsible adults, most of us strive to attain financial stability. The same goes for artists like writers or novelists who pursue their craft full-time. However, getting a publishing deal that actually pays enough to sustain a comfortable lifestyle is akin to an impossible dream for most writers. Thus, the common belief that there’s “no money” in being a writer or novelist remains to this day.

As for Ron, he believes that writers and artists contribute significantly to culture and society, and by using the appropriate marketing strategies and sales platforms, it is possible to turn one’s passion into a sustainable livelihood.

What’s Next for Ron Canimo?

This year, Ron plans to publish an extended version of his second book, “Sa Buwan Kita Natagpuan,” and if everything goes well, he also harbors the desire to delve into a different writing genre and publish an entirely fresh book.

“I'm learning to explore topics beyond heartbreak. I aspire to write more pieces about humanity, faith, and social issues,” he added.

Ron Canimo
Photo by Ron Canimo

For those who resonate with Ron’s experiences, his advice is to embrace moments of failure and heartbreak because it’s perfectly okay if you haven’t figured out everything just yet.

You can avail of his books "Mga Tala at Tula" and "Ikaw sa Bawat Araw" via the TikTok shop.

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