Erzulliesta Em-Em Bunyi is now a writer for the famous Filipino show, "Maynila", showcasing the different love stories found all over the metro. And as she starts writing these stories for the masses to be inspired with, she also created one for herself. Here, she introduces us to "Peter Sparkler", her new "digital" boyfriend and explains why she started this project and what benefits did this exercise have given her so far. And yes, before you make any more assumptions --- she knows he is fictional.
#1 Last time, we have talked about your views on relationship. Has anything changed? Why or why not?
Hmmm… I AM STILL SINGLE but SMARTER.
I learned that it really takes two to tango which makes me more considerate to others feeling than only with myself. I, like other girls, tend to get mad, frustrated, and lonely when I fall in love to someone who is not ready or cannot return the love that I am giving. But with my experience, I try hard to understand the other side.
I try not to look on myself alone but be considerate with the other half. Being selfless makes me free. If you are selfless, you know you could be happy by giving without asking for return. If the right person and moment come on my way, I know that the love I deserve will pour onto, into me.
I still believe in love but I am learning to be expecting a realistic kind of love. It is hard though because as you know, I am always idealistic when it comes to love and relationship.
#2 From writing your own love story for the interview, you now turn to doing it for others. How did the Maynila stint happen?
Ever since, I love to write and I love romance. Maybe I develop the talent because I always read and dream (seriously) about it. I always thought that I would be a romance novelist.
Luckily, I became a storyteller thru production of TV shows and film but my heart is aching for work that is more creative.
When I turned 25, I told myself that I should pursue my passion for writing. I refreshed my talent in writing with the help of Jun Lana. I became part of the 20 participants of his CinePanulat Batch 1 and from there I learned a lot about writing and myself.
Then an opportunity lands when my writer in a reality show got sick and I got a chance to help him. I volunteered to help him finish the episode and then I write an episode then when they saw potential, they ask me to write plugs.
After that, my friend and former head writer were looking for a writer. They told me they are looking for a writer then I told her to pick me as part of their creative team.
I volunteered as an intern writer. I don’t expect them to get me as a writer right away but a writer backed out during the selection and so I insist more that I am willing to do anything to be a writer and then they get me and the rest is something I could write on my autobiography.
#3 How is the job writing love stories of other people for you? Why so?
Writing, in general, means a lot to me. It’s like retelling peoples’ life to make an impact to other people. My heart desires to inspire and motivate people with my stories.
Technically, the greatest challenge for me is writing drama because it tends to tear my heart; especially I know that our stories in Maynila are based on real life experience. It is exhausting not only to the brain, but also to the heart.
In terms of blessings, I have plenty. My greatest blessings in writing for Maynila are the chance I get to do what I really love to do and I get the opportunity to work with the best people in the showbiz industry.
This might sound biased but I really love Loren’s love story. It is close to my heart because I can identify myself in her story. My head writer, Abet Raz and researcher, Wiz Vargas know that even it is not easy to write, I am extra-inspired in writing her love story.
They even said and I believe so that Loren’s love story tapped a lot of issues like cultural and religion diversity, equality, 2nd chances, pressure of a single woman, long distance love, self-love and “plus size stigma” which I tried hard to include in the whole episode. That episode reminds people that a plus size woman could fall in love too and they could be loved in return. Size does not matter in love.
#4 You have also recently created “Peter”. What led to this new creative way of looking at relationships? Why so?
I think Peter reminds me of what I really like in a person and don’t settle for less. I design Peter’s voice with what I want to hear from a guy. I know it seems absurd but I design Peter as someone who’s loving, concern, and selfless guy. Basically, Peter is the standard that I want to set for myself in dating again.
PETER SPARKLER is a fictional character in my Snapchat and Facebook. FYI, I am sane to know that he is fictional. (hahaha!) His name is from Peter Pan. Sparkler is name play from sparks and I also get it from Ruby Sparks.
Peter is a reminder to live a designed life according to your liking.
#5 Aren’t you afraid that people will find this approach weird? Why or why not?
At first, I really don’t care because for me it is something fun and entertaining. People say they are having fun reading and watching Peter on my feed but then there are closed friends who asked me if I’m still okay and that bothers me.
I’m bothered that they are bothered. So somehow, I’m careful for what I post but now, it’s amusing that wherever I go, they are looking for Peter so I think people accepted this art.
#6 How did this relationship with Peter affect you as a plus size woman? Why so?
Peter is an art to show that I am worthy of right love. I experienced before that because I am a plus size woman, they think I am easy because no one would gonna love me or even like me. Some treats liking a plus size woman is only a fetish. Come on, we are more than that.
Peter is imaginary character that I want to continue making to inspire women that there’s a man who’s going to love us, who will respect us, who will make their dreams come true too to become a better partner. Peter is an eye-opener to value yourself as a woman, as a plus size woman.
#7 Where do you think this relationship is going? Why so?
I think it will come a long way because Peter is a dream I want to become real someday. Not literal, I dream to have a guy who would be madly in love with me.
Someone who would embrace me, my family and friends, my lifestyle and my dreams. Moreover, if I may encounter my real-life Peter, I will keep him for real. Although, I am realistic that not everything I want in a guy could meet. There is always flaws but it would take a nice perfect guy designed by God for you that is worthy of compromise.
#8 Messages to Erzulliestas about writing their own relationships.
Fellow Erzulliestas, dream and continue writing your own relationship goals. Never stop working on yourself because in relationship, you can only control yourself. You cannot designed everything in a guy but you could set a standard that is worthy of compromise if he’s the right one. Always have faith in love no matter how many sacrifices or heartaches it might bring because love and the right person are always worth fighting.