Jerry Bayoca Gracio , poet, fictionist, and screenwriter, was born in the Tondo district of Manila, but spent his childhood in the small rural village of Nenita in Modragon town, Northern Samar. He studied Malikhaing Pagsulat at the University of the Philippines in Diliman. Among his honors and awards are the Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature for poetry, short fiction, and screenplay, three Screenwriter's Prize from the Film Development Council of the Philippines, and the Poet of the Year Award ( Makata ng Taon 2005) from the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino. His first book, Apokripos , was awarded the 2006 National Book Award by the Manila Critics Circle and was nominated for the Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award. Gracio is also the winner of the Gawad Likhaan: The University of the Philippines Centennial Literary Prize for his poetry collection Aves . He was the Most Outstanding fellow to the 21 st UP National Writers Workshop. Critics regard Gracio as one of the most distinctive voice in contemporary Filipino poetry. He currently resides in the City of Valenzuela, where he was honored with the Gawad Dr. Pio Valenzuela, the highest award given by the city to its outstanding citizens.