Meetings and Opportunities: Armenia at London Book Fair 2014

Arevik Ashkharoyan, Executive Director of Armenian Literature Foundation and Book Platform Local Project Manager, participated at London Book Fair in April 9-11, 2014 as part of the Armenian Pavilion. There was a dedicated desk for the meetings of the Foundation as well as a shelf with studies, promotional and informational materials of the Book Platform Project. Besides Arevik Ashkharoyan two more participants of the Armenian Pavilion were in London with the support of the Events Participation Support Scheme of the Book Platform project. These were Khachik Grigoryan, Director of Ankyunakar publishing house, as well as Nairi Hakhverdi, translator of 1st Armenian Literary Agency.

Arevik Ashkharoyan had around 40 preplanned meetings with publishers, agents and other professionals from UK, US, France, Germany, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, Italy, Turkey, Russia and other countries. During these meetings information about Book Platform project was shared, with special focus on the studies. All publishing professionals during the meetings were very interested to learn more about the publishing market of Armenia, since the country and especially its publishing scene, was completely unknown to almost all of them. The Study on Publishing and Bookselling in Armenia was just the right type of material to give a general idea on the topic of their interest. Additional information on other studies and activities by Book Platform was also of interest to them.

Another activity, which was of interest to foreign publishers, was the Editorial Visits, which took place in February 2014 within the Book Platform project. Some publishers and agents have heard about the visiting program directly from the participants of the February visits, and this was one of the main reasons of their interest towards an unknown market. Many of them expressed their willingness to participate in such a project in the future. As a result of these meetings ALF has made a list of interested professionals and will send information about the future editorial visits program for their information. Arevik Ashkharoyan also met with some of the February Editorial Visits participants (Silvia Brunelli, Piero Salabe and Laure Pecher), and received more feedback from them on the project, as well as more names to be included in the future programs. Ms. Askharoyan had also a very productive meeting with Daniel Hahn, as a follow up of the "Fair Play and Collaboration" workshop from 2013. This meeting was especially important with a view to discussing the structure and functioning of the British Literary Translators Center. This information will be used to give the start of Armenian Literary Translators' Association. These by all means are considered to be important steps towards the self-sustainability of the project results.



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