[Author Interview] Leng de Chavez


What is your full name?

Colleen Anne de Chavez

When is your birthday?

September 27

How old are you?


Favorite food?

Cheeseburger and fries

Favorite color?


Favorite song?

At the moment? Turn Out The Lights by Julien Baker

Favorite TV show?

Breaking Bad and Parks and Recreation

Favorite place to read and/or write?

UPLB Main Library

Favorite book?

Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl


Who are you when you’re writing?

Definitely the best and worst person ever. As much as I love telling these stories inside my head, I get frustrated every time I try to actually write them down. I always feel like something’s missing in my words, so I end up not writing a thing.

Who are you when you’re not writing?

A twenty-something who tries to balance her writing career and her day job as an HR professional.

Which do you prefer more?

Both! I love the challenge.

What drives you to write more?

The nagging voices of my characters inside my head and of course, my readers.

How often do you experience writer’s block and what do you do to get out of it?

I experience it a lot and it’s the worst feeling ever. I take breaks, read books, watch films or write other stuff to get me back into the zone.

Are you a perfectionist when it comes to your work?

I try to be.

Do you like making outlines when you write, or do you prefer to start from scratch and work your way from there?

I cannot write without outlines and character profiles! They make my writing process easier.

If you could do both at the same speed, which would you prefer: Writing on paper or typing your words? Why?

Writing on paper, hands down.

What do you like about writing for your self-published works? How about your traditionally published works?

Content-wise, I like writing my self-published works more because of the flexible word limit and I get to be more involved in the whole publishing process. Marketing is much easier for my traditionally published books, but aside from the manuscript itself, I have little input on the whole process.

Which one would you prefer, to have all of your works self-published or traditionally published?

If only I have all the time and money in the world, I’ll self-publish all of my works. I like to be hands-on when it comes to my babies.

What is the best writing advice that you could share with us?

I always go back to Stephen King’s advice from his book, On Writing: “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.”

Of all the things that you’ve ever written (poems, essays, short stories, novels, etc.), which one is the most special to you?

+ and Batch, the two short stories I wrote for Eros Atalia’s fiction writing workshop in 2013.


What inspired the idea of your first book?

A breakup and UPLB itself.

What message would you like your readers to learn from that book?

You can’t choose who you’ll love but you can choose to open your heart to love.

What inspired the idea of your latest book?

My love for music and ice cream.

What message would you like your readers to learn from that book?

It’s not too late to change yourself for the better.

What is the greatest challenge that you have encountered in the publishing world and how did you overcome it?

Juggling my studies and my writing career. I entered the publishing world (both self-publishing and traditional) when I was a college junior in 2013. That year was such an adjustment for me because I had to sacrifice a lot just to pursue my studies and my passion at the same time. I was completely clueless about publishing, so I am very thankful for Ms. Mina Esguerra who guided me all the way.


How would you define book discrimination?

Book discrimination is when you judge a book without even reading its content. Maybe the book has negative reviews, the cover is underwhelming or overwhelming for your taste or you simply don’t like the author or the genre.

How do you feel about it?

I admit, I used to discriminate books because of the covers. I’m very picky when it comes to what I read, so if the cover doesn’t do it for me, pass! But when my Pop Fiction book, The Despicable Guy, won the Filipino Readers Choice Award in 2014, I had the taste of book discrimination. Some said nasty stuff about my book because “Eh galing naman ng Wattpad yan! Walang substance. Malamang puro landian lang” without actually reading my work. That incident was a wake-up call for me not to instantly judge a book before reading its content. We’re talking about a person’s hard work here, and I think it’s unfair to judge the whole thing by just looking at a part of it.

What do you think is the cause of book discrimination?

Close-mindedness on new trends and popular genres.

What would you do against it?

Just read books! Ask for recommendations from your trusted friends and read reviews. Explore other genres, too.

Fill in the blanks with a book recommendation. More people should read ________ by ________ because ________.

More people should read #romanceclass books because they are awesome and worth reading! If you want an unlimited dose of kilig, start reading them now!!

Thank you so much for participating in my blog event, Ate Leng!

Signature II

Giveaway! ❤

Win a print copy of If I Fall! [PH only]

22 thoughts on “[Author Interview] Leng de Chavez

  1. When it comes to book discrimination, I refused to read in Wattpad since ang impression dun, “landian lang”, “kilig kiligan”, “walang literature value”. But Ate Leng made me be open on this thought. At first siya lang tinangkilik ko sa Wattpad (upto now siya pa din the best Wattpad writer sakin) pero sa panahon na adik na adik ako sa Wattpad, I saw a lot of stories there na kaya ilaban sa Filipino writing industry. This interview made me fangirl all over again as The Despicable Guy and If I Fall (even the After hours lol) snippets run at the background reading this.


  2. Thank you so much for this! I’ve been reading and fangirling (!!!!) over Ate Leng’s works since 2011 and this interview gave me the opportunity to know her better in terms of her personal faves, bookish opinions and most especially her writing process.


  3. Without this blog interview, I wouldn’t be able to know ate Leng’s full name! Hahaha! But seriously, I am so glad to have read this because now, somehow, I get to have a peek on Ate Leng’s mind about Book Duscrimination. And I am much more glad to know that we share the same sentiments (somehow) on that certain topic.

    Congratulations on this and God bless!


  4. The interview was nice, fun and also inspiring. I started to read Ate Leng’s works from: The Despicable Guy and I’m still updated with all her current works. It was fun to know the things about Ate Leng. Kasi I really love her work lalong lalo na yung The Spaces In Between ahhhh Andreau and Zades 😍. Even the Anthology is worth reading kasi maiimagine mo talaga yung mga “what if” iba yung naging character nila (and AH HAHAHH). And also naimpluwensyahan rin ako ng mga ganap sa stories nya, kasi maiinspire ka na lang bigla na magbasa and matuto ng foreign words like Zades diba?

    Actually, reading this interview inspires me to continue writing. Kasi nakakatakot magsulat lalo na pag nawawalan ka ng words to use na talagang magandang gamitin para maimagine ng mga readers yung story mo. Thanks for having this interview!


  5. I really love ate Leng’s stories💖I love how she said, “It’s not to late to change yourself for the better.”🤗It’s great that she fights for the book discrimination.😊It’s sad that nowadays, most of the people only looks at the cover without even thinking how the author worked hard to finish the book.😟


  6. Ugh, Ate Leng is like my favorite Wattpad writer ever. She makes very ideal yet realistic characters. She’s so natural, she’s so cute cause she fangirls with her readers, and!! She’s one of the reason why I dreamed of studying in UP four years ago, and now I finally am studying at UP. Thank you so much for featuring her in this interview cause she deserves it, really! I’m so happy I got to know several stuff about her because of this.


  7. The interview is really nice to read, medyo di kasi ganon ka-open si Ate Leng(for me ha). Mahirap minsan ma-distinguish yung likes nya kaya it was really nice reading this kasi uyy! bagong discovery kung ano yung gusto ni Ate Leng! Would love to meet her since parehas na iisang place lang pala kami. God bless!


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