Hey! Ria from Manila here. First of all, thanks for taking the time to get to know me. I hope this bio gives you a good idea of the face behind the words. I’ll start with four essential things about myself.
“Marketing is simply storytelling.”
To be specific, I’m a trade marketer. Ring any bells?
Yeah, I didn’t know about it either until I started working. Since this is probably the least known subset of marketing, here’s the easiest way to describe it: I think about what makes people choose one product over the other at the moment of purchase, whether it be in a brick-and-mortar or online store. Trade Marketers find ways to catch your attention (sexy in-store shelves!) and get inside your brain (cool promos!) while you’re shopping so that you walk out of the store with our product. Think Meredith-Gray-pick-me-choose-me-love-me. …
The words that changed my outlook came from, of all places, a presentation on workplace safety at my new job. “Always report the near misses,” the facilitator said, as a slide showed a couple of boxes falling off a forklift and narrowly missing the man standing underneath it.
When I saw the image, I flinched. But then I thought, “Wow, lucky guy.”
This past year has been a string of near misses for me. My sister, a doctor, tested positive for Covid-19 but had an asymptomatic case. Soon after switching jobs, I learned that my former company would be shuttering due to the pandemic. …
You’ve probably come across that self-help article. You know, the one titled “X Easy Ways to Change Your Behavior” and then shamelessly tells you that you can finish 100 books in a year if you stop bingeing on Netflix and pick up a damn book instead. True. But real talk?
Such advice is nowhere near easy — especially if you’re the type to gladly finish the whole season of Bridgerton in one sitting (I feel you). You can slice it, dice it, flip it in any way you want. But habit formation is no easy task.
This is not to discourage you. But after a year of immense lifestyle changes and mindset shifts, I realized that behavior change boils down to a few simple yet fundamental truths — that, once fully embraced, make the process less daunting and the roadmap more defined. …
Have you ever wondered what makes “great” sushi? Perhaps.
According to Merriam-Webster, sushi is “Cold rice dressed with vinegar, formed into any of various shapes, and garnished especially with bits of raw seafood or vegetables” But that’s nowhere near Jiro Ono’s definition. I’ll let you know what that is later on. For now, let me introduce Jiro.
Jiro Ono is a 95-year old master sushi chef. In the mouthwatering documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi, we get an inside look at his three-Michelin starred restaurant, Sukiyabashi Jiro, his passion for his work, and why he is regarded as a shokunin.
In Japan, a shokunin is a person who has devoted his life to his profession and has reached a rare level of expertise. The shokunin’s secret? …
“Is that a German thing?”
I was shocked to hear from my German mentor — of all people — that he didn’t think New Year was a big deal. But now I’m starting to see why.
(Teaser: It doesn’t have anything to do with Germany)
Though he appreciates resolutions, what my mentor couldn’t understand was why people attributed them to a specific day.
With all the ruckus of the season (New beginnings! A time to restart! New year, new me!), …
The year that stopped us all on our tracks seems to be, quite inexplicably, my personal best.
Trust me. I know how that sounds.
“It was difficult for me to pin down how it’s possible that [the quarantine] can be one of the best things that can happen to anyone, but that’s what it was for me”, I responded to Kiana Keys’ piece — which also inspired my headline. The admission reeks of privilege. And as I write this, I still feel guilty knowing I got through the year largely unscathed.
If you’re reading this, you’re probably one of the lucky ones, too. …
The upside to being a newbie on Medium?
Living in blissful ignorance of the platform changes and their impact on writers. I mean, yes, it worries me sometimes.
But allow me to take a step back and share with you what I’ve gained by merely being here.
Before the writing, the MPP, and the stats, I was a reader. I scoured the platform with modest curiosity and the vain hope of becoming — or at least seeming like — a more interesting person.
In The Edition, Siobhan O'Connor said, “In a world dominated by mindless feeds, we’re aiming to deliver delight, insight, utility, expert voices, and fun. And to bring a little joy back to the internet. …
In the documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi, world-renowned sushi artisan Jiro Ono said:
“In order to make delicious food, you have to eat delicious food. The quality of the ingredients is important, but you need to develop a palate capable of discerning good and bad. Without good taste, you can’t make good food.”
Think of an influential figure. Or your favorite writer. It’s no coincidence that they’re avid readers. – They’ve learned how to tell compelling stories.
You may have the intellectual horsepower, world-class experiences, or the superb vocabulary to create great content, but none of those will guarantee that you’ll be able to get your message across as a writer.
So, read not just for new ideas, but to raise your standards, develop your intuition, and best of all, understand what makes great, effective writing.
Part of becoming a better writer is becoming a better editor.
What makes the editing process exciting is that it’s always going to be different. But that’s also why it’s so darn hard — every story has its own challenges. Every story requires a different treatment. But as you go along, you’ll find your own strategies that lend a bit of cadence to the process and help you revise drafts more easily.
I’ll be sharing three simple tricks that have made editing less daunting for me and helped bring out the ideas in my stories. …