An A.B. Philosophy graduate from the Holy Rosary College Seminary in Naga City, Cordero is the youngest and most awarded creative writer in Bicol today. He is studying to become a priest.Writing, shares Cordero, came to him in 1999, when he was still in high school, and which he says was later reinforced by his seminary training. He used to write in Filipino but has now shifted to Bikol, the region’s lingua franca, upon the insistence of Peñones, whom he considers among his mentors. Also instrumental to his growth as a writer, he says, are Alano, literary coordinator of the National Council for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), and Realubit, retired University of the Philippines professor who wrote the first book on Bikol history and literature: “Bikols of the Philippines.”Cordero also writes in Rinconada, the dialect spoken in his native Iriga and other eastern parts of Camarines Sur.He has two volumes of poetry to his name. The first, “Mga Tulang Tulala,” a collection of poems written in three languages (Filipino, Bikol and Rinconada), won the 2006 Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award. It contains three of his prize-winning poems in the annual national poetry competition sponsored by HomeLife Magazine: “Paputok” (Firecrackers, 2nd Prize, 1999), “Isda” (Fish, Grand Prize, 2004), and “Agua de Mayo sa Seminaryo” (First Rain of May in the Seminary, 2nd Prize, 2005).
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