Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Manila International Book Fair 2011 brings books closer to the Filipino people

Jumbo Editorial Team

The Primetrade Asia, Inc. in partnership with the Book Development Association of the Philippines (BDAP), Asian Catholic Communicators, Inc. (ACCI), Overseas Publishers Representatives' Association of the Philippines (OPRAP) and the Philippine Booksellers Association, Inc. (PBAI) organized the 32nd Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) 2011 from September 14 to 18 at the Exhibit Halls 1-4 housed in the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia (MOA) Complex, Pasay City.

“32 years ago the MIBF was an odd experiment held at Philsite, a venue in Pasay that has since been demolished. Getting book lovers to come in was difficult," Lirio Sandoval, President of the Book Development Association of the Philippines (BDAP), who was a runner and jack-of-all-trades during the first MIBF, recalled.

"Many went out of curiosity but very few bought books. Nobody reported a profit, not even National Book Store. We were there simply for the love of books," he remembered.
Things have changed over the year with the Fair having attracted huge number of visitors over all five days recently with more than a hundred exhibitors occupying the four halls of SMX Convention Centre.

According to Irene Lloren, President of Primetrade Asia, Inc, the MIBF has evolved from an industry- and academe-centered occasion into a "lifestyle event." Its objective, however, has remained the same: "to bring books closer to the Filipino people."

The National Book Development Board Chairman, Dennis T. Gonzalez, in his speech during the MIBF’s opening ceremony, opined that the fundamentals of the local book industry were "solid and strong enough to meet the challenges and grasp the opportunities of the Digital Revolution."

Blooey Singson, who works as a PR executive besides being a newspaper contributor for the Students and Campuses section of Manila Bulletin, and is also a published children’s book illustrator, is a regular visitor to the MIBF having built a mountain of to-be-read books which threatened to burst through the roof if she didn’t read them fast enough.

“I’m home after the last day of the MIBF and I think I carted out the biggest haul I’ve had in years. I thought last year’s loot was quite a haul, but it pales in comparison to this year’s three-post-running loot, and I’m glad my mom is out of town, or else I’d have to smuggle my purchases inside the house,” she blogged.

13th Colombo International Book Fair 2011 proves success story

Jumbo Editorial Team

The 13th Colombo International Book Fair 2011 witnessed endless crowds flocking to the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) bringing together die-hard fans, publishers and organizers.

“The Book Fair is good and the prices are reasonable,” enthused Yusra Farzan, who said that she visited the Book Fair not once, but twice during the week, along with her friends.

The entrance tickets were priced at Rs 10 and the proceeds went to the ‘Daru Diriya Trust’ administered by the Sri Lanka Book Publishers Association, BMICH and Sampath Bank. Every cent was put into the trust and even the cost of printing the tickets was not deducted.

“Using the interest from the fund, scholarships are awarded to students who excel in their studies but due to financial constraints are unable to further their education,” said Shan Rajaguru, Director of the Sri Lanka Book Publishers Association, the organizers of the Book Fair.

“The inaugural Book Fair was held in 1999 at the National Art Gallery under the name ‘Kolamba Poth Salpila’ had just 37 stalls. This year, there were 400 stalls of which 40 were international stalls from countries such as India, Singapore, Malaysia, Germany, UK and USA,” he disclosed.

The Book Fair coincided with the National Literary month and hence saw the burst of publication. “Four hundred books, both Sri Lankan and foreign are being launched during the course of the Book Fair,” he added.

The Sri Lanka Book Publishers Association also availed the opportunity to promote Sinhala Literature in the country. The ‘Swarna Pusthaka’ (Golden Book) award was given to the best Sinhala Original Novel by a Sri Lankan author.

This year, the fifth ‘Swarna Pusthaka’ award was given to Sunethra Rajakarunanayake for her book ‘Kavi Kandura’.

“It is a service that we are rendering to the book loving public and it is our duty to the nation,” Bandula Ekanayake, Director General/CEO of the BMICH, said adding that much preparation and thought go into organizing the Book Fair.

US booksellers’ bodies join hands for expanded shows

Jumbo Editorial Team

The Midwest Independent Booksellers Association (MIBA) and the Great Lakes Independent Booksellers Association are reported to be contemplating merging shows. The idea, in the air for quite some time, is believed to have gained momentum after the success of the MIBA’s and GLIBA’s joint spring meeting, held in Milwaukee which had drawn 60 booksellers from 18 MIBA member stores and 12 GLIBA member stores.

According to reports, MIBA’s seven-member board, on the sidelines of its recent trade show in Minneapolis, held a meeting with officials of GLIBA to form an exploratory committee to determine the feasibility of holding just one MIBA/GLIBA trade show each year.

The MIBA booksellers reported being polled by board members during the show and subsequent reception as to whether they liked the idea of one show that would rotate between Minneapolis and either downtown Chicago or Michigan each fall.

“The decision was made to decide if it’s a possibility. We have to decide if we’d gain more than we’d lose booksellers. MIBA does not want to be in Schaumburg [Ill.], but we’re committed to staying relevant,” Carrie Obry, Executive Director, MIBA, was quoted as saying.

Obry revealed that the two organizations will be “running financials and checking out contracts” before deciding whether or not to move forward with a joint trade show. The MIBA is contracted to hold its show at The Renaissance Hotel in the historic Milwaukee Road train depot in Minneapolis Oct. 4-5, 2012.

Deb Leonard, Executive Director, GLIBA, expressed the hope that by merging the two shows into one larger show, both organizations will benefit, including increased support from publishers.

“We are committed to seeing if it makes sense,” Leonard stated, adding that GLIBA has not contracted beyond 2011 in holding its annual trade show, so that MIBA could conceivably host a joint MIBA/GLIBA show in 2012, and GLIBA would host it in 2013.

Trident Group launch E-book services

Jumbo Editorial Team

Trident Media Group, one of the world’s leading literary agencies, has announced its plan to launch a new e-book initiative, Trident E-Book Operations. This division will create, manage and implement innovative e-book strategies for its authors, including the distribution of a variety of e-books directly to a large number of e-tailers in North America and internationally. Authors will have more flexibility than ever before, as well as new potential domestic and foreign revenue streams.

“Trident has been a leader in innovative approaches in the representation of its authors, including in the international markets with its “hot list”, at the international book fairs and in new audio licensing. We will continue to manage all facets of our clients’ businesses by the extension of our services into the ever-changing e-book publishing business around the world. Trident Media Group will devise strategies to maximize value for its authors in the new and complex e-book publishing field. Trident will not become a publisher, but will instead continue in its new e-book operations to have itself aligned with its clients whose interests we serve as an agent and manager,” Robert Gottlieb, Chairman, Trident Media Group, stated.

The Chairman himself will oversee the E-Book Operations department with CEO Dan Strone, Executive VP John Silbersack, and business advisor Lew Korman. Trident has also appointed Lyuba DiFalco and Nicole Robson to the new positions of Co-Directors, E-Book Operations.

Trident’s clients will be provided with a comprehensive suite of services – ranging from digital conversion, digital jacket design, to marketing and social media consultation – from some of the most highly sought after professionals in the industry, and have advantageous relationships in all areas applicable to e-books, including copy-editing, marketing and cover design.

Trident and its authors will have the ability to quickly change their e-book programs in anticipation of the rapidly evolving worldwide e-book marketplace.

Trident Media Group’s E-Book Operations will include out-of-print, backlist, new frontlist and original titles, special short-form nonfiction and fiction works by its prize-winning authors, enhanced e-books and new formats as the market develops, print-on-demand options, and new business relationships with traditional and non-traditional publishers.

Trident will strategize with its authors regarding digital pricing, foreign sales and translations. Trident will also continue to handle sales reporting and royalty payments for all available digital editions. E-Book Operations services will become part of Trident’s general commission structure for all of the agency’s services.

Urdu books in great demand in Lucknow Fair

Jumbo Editorial Team

The crowd swelled at the recent book fair at Moti Mahal lawns in Lucknow with the total footfalls estimated to have crossed the 50,000-mark on the final day. The event was organized by The Federation of Booksellers and Publishers Association (TFBPA) and the Knowledge Tree Foundation.

Satisfied with the response, the organizers felt that reading habits of the residents of Lucknow have improved and this time, people from other districts like Muzzafarnagar, Sultanpur, Barabanki were also visiting the stalls.

"The best thing about the book fair is that books of all kinds are available under one roof. People don't have to rush to different stores for getting books on different subjects. They now wait for the book fair in Lucknow,'' organizers Manoj Chandel and Umesh Dhall remarked in a newspaper interview.

Among the books that were selling briskly included the drawing and sketching books for kids, inspirational books and real life stories while the demand for Hindi-Urdu dictionary was also reported to have soared further.

The students were seen picking up `Twilight', and various books by Robin Sharma, Chetan Bhagat and other writers. The book written by Hemant Dwivedi such as `Suitcase Mein Zindagi' and `Lalfita' were also in demand.

Besides the natives, the foreigners were also seen picking up books on Urdu language and literature.

Chad Walasek from Canada, who’s in town to study Urdu, was looking for a book by Wajid Ali Shah. When asked about his inclination towards the language, Chad said: "Urdu is one of the best languages for expressions. I want to learn more about poetries in Urdu. The language is a symbol of tehzeeb.''

Accompanying Chad was Iris Yellum from USA. "I am learning Hindi and Urdu and so I wanted to know more about these languages.'' While Emily Shakiro, also from USA, pursuing PhD in Asian Languages and Literature, remarked: "I wanted to know about the Urdu adab. Works of Ismat Chugtai and other prominent writers are nice to read.''

Monday, September 26, 2011

Shoaib Akthar’s book launch in Mumbai, Bangalore called off

Jumbo Editorial Team

The launch ceremonies of former Test cricketer Shoaib Akhtar’s autobiography titled Controversially Yours, released in New Delhi on September 23, scheduled to be held in the cities of Mumbai and Bangalore will not be taking place.

The Indian media broke the news that close on the heels of Shoiab Akhtar's book launch function being cancelled in Mumbai, another function which was to be attended by the Pakistani speedster in Bangalore for promotion of his controversial autobiography has also been called off.

The launch of the book in Bangalore was be hosted by Landmark and HarperCollins Publishers India in the evening but has now been called off, a communication from the organisers said without assigning any reason. The media reports suggested that the event was cancelled because of unforeseen circumstances.

Two of Shoaib Akhtar's promotional events in Mumbai had been cancelled though no official reason was given. Former India skipper Dilip Vengsarkar was to release Controversially Yours at the Cricket Club of India (CCI) premises on September 25.

According to speculation, the cancellation of the event could be due to less-than-flattering remarks in his autobiography about iconic batsman Sachin Tendulkar and another senior player Rahul Dravid. Mumbai and Bangalore are the hometowns of Tendulkar and Dravid respectively.

Shoaib Akhtar has drawn flak for his comments from several quarters, including former Pakistan skipper Wasim Akram, under whom he made his debut and senior BCCI functionary Rajiv Shukla who desired an apology from the speedster.

Wasim Akram lashes out at Shoaib Akthar’s controversial autobiography

Jumbo Editorial Team

Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram, one of the living legends of cricket, has ridiculed Shoaib Akhtar and his recently launched autobiography titled Controversially Yours by stating that the pacer was a ‘problem’ when he was active as a player and remains just that even in retirement.

Wasim, who played much more cricket than Shoaib and achieved far greater success in every format of the game, loudly and clearly contended the viewpoint of his ex-colleague, regarding Indian batting great Sachin Tendulkar.

“I remember one of Sachin’s knocks in the Sialkot Test. It was the fourth Test and the wicket had lot of grass. I was 22 and Waqar was 19 and we were very fast,” Wasim recalled in an interview in which he also rejected some of the other allegations made in Shoaib’s autobiography.

“Waqar hit him on his chin and he came back after taking treatment and scored a 50. If a 16-year-old can’t be scared, I don’t think any batsman can be scared. It hardly matters what Shoaib says,” Wasim believed.

Wasim, who led Pakistan in the World Cup in 1996 and 1999, didn’t mice words in stating that Shoaib, a controversial figure all through his playing career, was just trying to sell his book with tall claims while rejecting allegations that he tried to destroy the fast bowler’s career.

“Whatever the Pakistan Cricket Board said I was with them. He was a problem when he was in the team and he is a problem when he is out of the team,” Wasim said about Shoaib, who played quite a few matches under him.

Shoaib, in his autobiography, had alleged that Wasim Akram did not encourage new fast bowlers and tried to destroy his international career.

Shoaib Akthar ridicules Sachin Tendulkar in autobiography

Jumbo Editorial Team

The recently launched autobiography of Pakistan’s retired fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar, appropriately titled Controversially Yours, has touched upon subjects that are certain to make headline news. The cricket lovers have another topic to debate now.

Shoaib, who spearheaded Pakistan’s pace attack for quite sometime, has attempted to ridicule two of the greatest batsmen of his era, Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid, whose talents and skills with the bat didn’t impress the speedster.

“I think players like Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid weren’t exactly match winners to start with, nor did they know the art of finishing the game,” Shoaib wrote.

“Vivian Richards, Ricky Ponting and Brian Lara and the likes of them are great batsmen who dominated with the bat and were truly match winners. Initially when I bowled to Sachin I found these qualities missing. He might have had more runs and records, he lacked the ability to finish the game,” the outspoken speedster reckoned.

“We would have faced a humbling defeat in the series but for the fact that we reined in Sachin Tendulkar. What went in our favour was that he was suffering from tennis elbow. This severely handicapped the great batsman. We managed to psychologically browbeat him,” Shoaib, having cleaned the Indian Grand Master on a few occasions, observed.

“We bounced the ball at him and were able to unnerve him. I returned to the dressing room that first day with the knowledge that Sachin was not comfortable facing fast and rising ball. He was distinctly uncomfortable against me. That was enough to build on,” he stated.

“I bowled him a particularly fast ball which he, to my amazement didn’t even touch. He walked away! That was the first time I saw him walk from me that too on the slow track of Faisalabad. It got my hunting instincts up in the next match. I hit him on the head and he couldn’t score after that,” Shoaib narrated.

Shoaib Akthar’s Controversially Yours launched in New Delhi

Jumbo Editorial Team

Former Test cricketer Shoaib Akhtar’s autobiography titled Controversially Yours, sparking controversy right away, was released in New Delhi, India, on September 23.

The book was launched at a hotel in the Indian capital and the ceremony was also attended by Pakistan High Commissioner to India, Shahid Malik.

The Pakistan speedster has confessed to having tampered with the ball and also questioned the class and temperament of India's batting icons, Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid.

“Almost all Pakistani fast bowlers have tampered with the ball. I may be the first one to openly admit to it but everybody is doing it. To be honest, every team in the world tampers with the ball. We probably started it but no team is innocent and virtually every fast bowler does it. That is the only way to survive because the wickets are so slow. I have tampered with the ball on many occasions,” he admitted.

Shoaib offered a solution to the problem of ball tampering by writing that the only way to stop this is for the ICC to ensure that at least some pitches are prepared in favour of the bowlers.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has distanced itself from Shoaib’s remarks, saying he was no longer associated with the board and was free to do whatever he wants.

Shoaib, who was a genuine match-winner, remained at the centre of many controversies in his stormy career which finally came to an end with the Cricket World Cup 2011 in which Pakistan reached the semifinals.

Shoaib engineered quite a few victories for Pakistan in every format of the game but many people believed that he could have given more to country if he disciplined himself and refrained from uncalled for controversies.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Quotable Quotes about Librarians, Libraries, Books and Reading

Jumbo Editorial Team

“If this nation is to be wise as well as strong, if we are to achieve our destiny, then we need more new ideas for more wise men reading more good books in more public libraries. These libraries should be open to all.”
-John F Kennedy

“If past history was all there was to the game, the richest people would be librarians."
-Warren Buffet

"Cutting libraries during a recession is like cutting hospitals during a plague."
-Eleanor Crumblehulme

"At the moment that we persuade a child, any child, to cross that threshold, that magic threshold into a library, we change their lives forever, for the better."
-Barack Obama

"Reclaim your role as eco-role models and exemplars in your community. Change is happening rapidly. Let libraries continue to be at the center of it."
-Wanda Urbanska

"Libraries and librarians have definitely changed my life -- and the lives of countless other Americans...they deserve the support and patronage of every single one of us who values education."
-Barbara Bush

"I'm of a fearsome mind to throw my arms around every living librarian who crosses my path, on behalf of the souls they never knew they saved."
-Barbara Kingsolver

“I’d be happy if I could think that the role of the library was sustained and even enhanced in the age of the computer.”
-Bill Gates

"School libraries help teachers teach and children learned. Children and teachers need library resources--especially books--and the expertise of a librarian to succeed. Books, information technology and school librarians who are part of the schools' professional team are basic ingredients for student achievement."
-Laura Bush

"Librarians have always been among the most thoughtful and helpful people. They are teachers without a classroom. No libraries, no progress." -
-Willard Scott

"In the nonstop tsunami of global information, librarians provide us with floaties and teach us how to swim."
- Linton Weeks

Friday, September 9, 2011

Silawat Ali’s Making Waves launched in Islamabad

Jumbo Editorial Team

Making Waves, authored by Silwat Ali, was launched in Islamabad on September 8. The book is a compilation of artwork and critical essays that aim to equip a layman with the critical appreciation for modern art

The book launch was organized by the Pakistan National Council of the Arts with the collaboration of the Foundation for Museum of Modern Art.

Speaking on the occasion, renowned artist and writer Salima Hashmi observed that in the present times contemporary art has become about ownership and not about knowledge.

She highlighted various facets of the book and the nature of art viewership in Pakistan. On the issues of post colonial dilemma and national identity, she said, “Art needs to get the same from the state as the state gets from it.”

The need to enlighten budding artists was highlighted by the Federal Minister for Textile and Industry, Makhdoom Shahabuddin, who recorded his appreciation for the creative and passionate individuals.

“I have nothing profound to say about contemporary art but I wish to take interest and attain knowledge to be better equipped to appreciate it,” the Minister remarked in his brief address.

“I find it very interesting to a see a compilation that appreciates new art forms in Pakistan. I am always in search of books that I can show to guests coming in from abroad and taking a piece of home with me on my travels,” fellow artist Dr Arjumand Faisal stated in his speech on the occasion.

17th Delhi Book Fair 2011 draws huge audience

Jumbo Editorial Team

The 17th Delhi Book Fair 2011, held from August 27 to September 4 at Pragati Maidan, lived up to its huge reputation, having drawn huge audience comprising of national and international publishers, librarians, researchers, academicians, literary agents, students and general public.

As usual, many of the industry leaders participated in the mega event that included publishers, booksellers, wholesalers and distributors. There was also the presence of periodicals and magazines besides manufacturers and dealers of teaching aids and computer software.

The Delhi Book Fair has established itself as a gateway to the Indian book publishing industry. An eagerly awaited exposition, it continues to offer a sales forum and a meeting place for publishers, booksellers, authors, translators and book-lovers of all age group.

It has evolved over the years as a highly popular conduit to the world of books and publishers and distributors.

The number of visitors in the Fair has been estimated in lakhs from India and overseas. The ever increasing numbers of visitors and exhibitors is a testimony to its success. First held in 1995 it has established itself as an annual cultural event in the history of Delhi and showcases the progress made by Indian publishing industry over the years.

The publishing industry in India has grown in leaps and bounds over the years. From modest and ancient beginnings it has transformed into a vast and complex industry.

With more than 16,000 publishing houses generating content in more than 24 regional languages, around 90,000 titles are reportedly being published every year.

Currently Indian publishing is regarded as one of the greatest in the world and can be counted among the first seven publishing nations. They are believed to be the third largest publishers of English language Books after the US and UK.