Graphic Reader trilingual editor takes home the Premio Antonio M. Abad Award

For her arresting collection of poems, Soy (I am), multi-awarded poet, essayist, and trilingual writer Marra PL. Lanot won the Hispanic-Philippine Literature Award at the 2023 Premio Antonio M. Abad.

The Premio Antonio M. Abad is one of the few Spanish-language writing contests that focuses on Philippine literature. 

It was organized in 2020 by the Far Eastern University in Manila and the Editorial Hispano Arabe de Barcelona, in collaboration with the Revista Filipina.


The award was created with the objective of “honoring, disseminating, and promoting the Hispanic linguistic tradition of the Philippines in order to foster Filipino literary creation in both Spanish and Chavacano at the national level.” It was also created to celebrate Antonio M. Abad, a renowned Filipino writer in Spanish.

The contest is divided into two different sections: Hispanic-Philippine Literature Award and Chavacano Literature Award. 

For this year, “A Caviteño Voice” by Arnel Barrera Beruete took the Chavacano Literature Award.

Both Lanot and Beruete received a certificate and several copies of a book that contains their winning poems.

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Of Lanot’s poem, one judge wrote: “The poetic self, intertwined with the genealogy of the author herself, provides notes of a color that I remember the poetry of Giaconda Belli, which highlights Marra Lanot’s poetic will to create her own, feisty feminine and feminist voice. Awareness is revealed as the main process to which these poems by Marra Lanot invite us.”

Gioconda Belli is a Nicaraguan-born novelist and poet known for her contributions to Nicaraguan literature.

Lanot’s language is simple but profound because in a poetic way, she talks of matters affecting an individual which also describes a host of sociopolitical issues—environment, gender, and animal rights, to name a few.


Lanot is the first and current editor of the Philippines Graphic Reader, the first and only nationally circulated literary magazine that is completely devoted to Philippine literature in English.

Started in 2021, the Philippines Graphic Reader is a monthly magazine that features four short stories and four poems culled from contributions submitted by the country’s beginning and veteran literary writers.

Lanot is a graduate of the University of the Philippines in Diliman, where she also worked as professor.

She also worked as Associate Artistic Director of the non-performing arts at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

For 14 years, Lanot served as member of the Motion Picture and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB).

She is a trilingual writer in Filipino, English, and Spanish. 

Her published multilingual collections of poems include: Witches’ Dance at iba pang tula sa Filipino at Español (2000), Riding the Full Moon in Filipino and Spanish (2008), Cadena de Amor, New and Selected Poems in English, Filipino, and Spanish (2017). 

From 1994 to 1997 Lanot wrote journalistic articles in Spanish for the “Cronica de Manila,” the Spanish section of the Manila Chronicle.

Lanot’s creative career has been recognized by several literary awards, including the Catholic Mass Media Award, the Gawad Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas, the National Achievement Award for Literature, and the prestigious Palanca Award. In 2013 she participated in the 23rd Medellin International Poetry Festival.

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