Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Springtime in Bologna

Last week, two of our staff members were in Italy for the annual Bologna Children's Book Fair. Now that they're back home and (mostly) over their jet lag, they were eager to share their experiences.

Here's what Sales & Rights Manager Gayna Theophilus, who was looking for foreign publishers for Annick titles, had to say:

This was my second trip to the Bologna Book Fair in beautiful Italy. Here’s a look at the Annick Press stand:
It was great meeting with publishers from around the world to talk about new and exciting children’s books. This year, a number of people stopped by our booth to admire Annick’s edition of Erebos and to mention that they had read it, or had heard about it and couldn’t wait to read it!

As was the case last year, most of the editors I met with were looking for unusual and compelling YA fiction–and Annick has two great upcoming titles for this fall that fit the bill: The Lynching of Louie Sam by Elizabeth Stewart and Enemy Territory by award-winning author Sharon E. McKay. I will be sending out the manuscripts of both books to a number of publishers over the coming weeks and with any luck we’ll soon see them published in many different languages around the world.

Associate Publisher Colleen MacMillan, who was looking for foreign titles to acquire, shared her perspective from the buyer's side:
This year's Bologna had a lot of energy, much more than last year. There was good traffic in the aisles in every hall, and a general upbeat mood. Perhaps it's because last year was difficult–trade sales had taken a hit in many countries, and there was a sense of uncertainty about the future of the book market. Whether the perceived upbeat mood was fact or fiction will become clear in the next few months with the tangible measure of offers, but the sense was that publishers want to be positive about the future.

As a foreign rights buyer, I heard pitches for many dystopian novels. Whether it's The Hunger Games effect or something else at work, it's obvious many are hoping to catch a big readership in that particular genre.

We have some exciting prospects from the book fair to consider over the next few months. The title we purchased last year and just released, Erebos, was on prominent display at the originating publisher's booth:
We have high hopes for Erebos and are now on the search for the next foreign title that fits our mantra of excellence and innovation. It’s happy reading for the editorial team at Annick or, in some cases, for our foreign readers who prepare reports.
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Speaking of Erebos, have you been following the blog tour this week? There are interviews, reviews, and giveaways! Click here for a list of all the tour stops.

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