Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Committees working actively to make National Conference on Career Development a resounding success

Pakistan News & Features Services

The various committees are functioning with great zeal to make the National Conference on Career Development of LIS Professionals and overall improvement in Libraries of Pakistan to be held at the National Library of Pakistan, Islamabad, from November 12 to 14, a resounding success. 

Syed Ghayyur Hussain, Director, National Library of Pakistan, and Secretary, Pakistan Library Association (PLA), Federal Branch, is fully confident that the three-day event will achieve the desired results to bring about a positive change in the society.

 He himself is the central figure to the whole show but he considers it a teamwork and shares the credit with the committees which are lending him the desired support in fulfilling their cherished goals

All set for National Conference on Career Development to commence on November 12

Pakistan News & Features Services 

All is set for the National Conference on Career Development of LIS Professionals and overall improvement in Libraries of Pakistan to be staged at the National Library of Pakistan, Islamabad, from November 12 to 14.

About 400 delegates from all over the country are expected to participate in the three-day conference, being organized by the Pakistan Library Association (PLA), Federal Branch, with the collaboration of the Department of Libraries, Government of Pakistan.

The National Library of Pakistan, located at the Constitution Avenue in the federal capital, has become the centre of activity of late and their team is working tirelessly under the supervision of its energetic Director, Syed Ghayyur Hussain, who is leading by example.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Self-publishing becoming mainstream in USA, UK

Pakistan News & Features Services

Self-publishing has continued becoming mainstream as suggested by the new figures revealing the number of do-it-yourself books published in the US has exploded, tripling in the last five years to reach almost quarter of a million titles in 2011. 

An analysis from Bowker, which issues ISBNs for books published in the US, shows that the writers are jumping into self-publishing at an unprecedented rate. 

The number of self-published books in the US grew by 287% to 235,625 books between 2006 and 2011. Self-published ebooks make up 37% of that total, with 87,201 released in 2011, and are the fastest-growing sector, up 129% since 2010, with print growing 33% in the same period. 

"This is no longer just vanity presses at work as self-publishing is out of the dark corners and making its way into the mainstream," Bowker's Beat Barblan revealed, adding that earlier this summer, four self-published authors had seven novels on the New York Times ebook bestseller list. “In 2011, America's 148,424 self-published print books accounted for 43% of the total print output,” he added. 

"It feels as though the ground is shifting at the moment. It's quite liberating. Some sort of transition was overdue," author Polly Courtney, who returned to self-publishing last year after publishing three books with HarperCollins, stated. 

She was unhappy with the way the publishers aimed her titles squarely at the chick lit market. "The growth rate is amazingly high. The UK is considered to be a couple of years behind the US but I think it's going the same way here too," she thought. 

According to Bowker Market Research's Books & Consumers UK survey, self-published books accounted for around 11% of all ebooks purchased by UK consumers in the first half of 2012, and just over 1% of volume purchases of print and ebooks overall. 

Adam Croft, whose self-published thrillers have hit Amazon's bestseller lists, suggests that ‘self-publishing is increasing massively in the UK, too.

Phenomenal increase in participation at Sharjah International Book Fair 2012

Pakistan News & Features Services

As many as 924 publishing houses from 62 countries will participate in the 31st Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) 2012 to be held at the Sharjah Expo Centre from November 7 to 17. It will be a record participation in terms of countries as well as the number of publishers. 

The Department of Culture and Information has announced that out of a total of 62 countries, 22 of them of the 22 Arab countries and 40 foreign countries, 24 will be participating in the SIBF for the first time. 

The number of participating countries is almost double this year than in the previous edition which saw the participation of 894 publishers from 35 countries, including 14 Arab countries and 21 foreign countries. 

Addressing a Press conference, Ahmed Al Amri, Director-General of the SIBF, disclosed the names of first time participants, which included Spain, Australia, Italy, Poland, Thailand, Romania, Serbia, China, Canada, Nigeria and Greece. 

He revealed that this year’s edition will witness an increase in the participation of Arabic publishing houses from 7,600 square metres to 9,613 square metres, while foreign participation has increased from 1,600 square metres to 2,100 square metres. 

The SIBF 2012 will register a phenomenal increase of 500 per cent in the participation of Indian publishing houses, in addition to the participation of 20 Pakistani publishers for the first time. 

The guests of the SIBF include an elite group of prominent Arab authors, such as Egyptian Minister of Culture Mohammed Saber Arab and Algerian novelist Ahlam Mostaghanmi, and high-profile artists, namely renowned Egyptian comedian Adel Imam and famous actor Yehya Al Fakhrani. 

There will be also a number of high profile non-Arab authors like Graffin Aslar, Robert Lacey, William Hamilton and Arundhati Roy, among others. The 10-day book fair will include a host of events and activities featuring cultural, children’s and culinary programmes which will take place at Celebrations Hall, Book Forum, Literary Forum, Cultural Hall and Thought Hall. 

The fair will feature events and activities, including presentation of awards, especially the cultural personality of the year which will be given this year to Emirati poet and writer Habib Al Sayegh, Sharjah awards for Emirati publishing houses and books and the best printed book and the best foreign book about economy.

The Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature will be presented along with other awards on the first day of the SIBF 2012. 

The 10-day children’s programme will include around 200 events, jointly organised by the Department of Culture and Information, Directorate of Arts, Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah City of Humanitarian Services, Sharjah Educational Zone, Juma Al Majid Centre for Culture and Heritage, Bahrain’s Women Association for Human Development and the Supreme Council for Family Affairs. 

The UAE, Korea, Sweden, Iraq, Kuwait, Egypt, Tunisia and France will conduct children-related events. 

The 10-day culinary programme will feature 25 events dedicated to Indian, Pakistani, Gulf and Middle Eastern cuisines presented by chefs Nirmeen Hano, Naushad, Gerard Baker, Zakher, Rose prince, Emmy Reyola, Ayesha Al Tamimi, Sam Clark and Manal Al Alim.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Glamour galore in Decades: A Century of Fashion book launch

Pakistan News & Features Services

It was a starry night at the Chateau Marmont’s Bar Marmont on October 19 in West Hollywood, California, where Cameron Silver’s book titled Decades: A Century of Fashion was launched.  

Hosts Dita Von Teese and Ashley Madekwe rocked with a vintage dress and jewelary while Kristina Davis remained the major attraction.

They were instrumental in making the book launch special as the dinner party was described as a fantastic event.

The Chateau Marmont is a venue that is a home away from home for many celebrities when they are visiting the sunny and beautiful California.

It further hosts many dinner parties, birthday parties, and other events just like this book launch party. This book launch event was as successful, if not more, that the ones held at this wonderful venue in the past. Everyone in attendance in the launch was presented a copy of the book autographed by the author.  

Kristin Davis along with Cameron Silver, Dita Von Teese, Marisa Tomei, Cheryl Tiegs, Elizabeth Stewart, Liz Goldwyn, Shiva Rose, Peggy Moffitt, and Ashley Madekwe wore their finest attire and made their way to the venue.

They posed for pictures to be taken with the guest of honor as well as with other guests who attended. The hosts of the evening did in amazing job in creating a very successful party.

The guests enjoyed appetizers and finger foods, which the catering staff had prepared for them, as well as an exquisite dinner.

The music was playing soft in the background, set the mood for the event, and provided great acoustic pleasure for the guests. Kristin Davis seemed to be all smiles and she charmed everyone.

To many it was a memorable evening and the lovely book was launched in perfect settings of Chateau Marmont. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 registers growth in participation, networking

Pakistan News & Features Services

The Frankfurt Book Fair 2012, having concluded on October 14, reportedly witnessed ten percent growth in participation and networking of international content industries. It registered increase in visitor numbers compared to last year, while demonstrating the 'courage and innovative power of Europe, and of the international publishing industry'. 

The conference and seminar programme of the Frankfurt Academy recorded a ten percent increase in the number of participants in comparison to last year. 

Around 3,300 people used the Frankfurt Book Fair as a chance to meet the 'movers & shakers' of the digital book industry, to identify new business models and trends, to witness some international best practice examples, and to exchange ideas. 

Four conferences and 14 seminars and workshops took place under the umbrella of the Frankfurt Academy 2012. 

Around 170 speakers at this year's events included Otis Chandler (GoodReads), Michael Tamblyn (Kobo), Charlie Redmayne (Pottermore), Stephen Page (Faber and Faber), the author Jonathan A. Gottschall, film producer Stephen Daldry, and high ranking representatives of Sony, Nintendo, Warner and Lucasfilm. 

Over the weekend, the Frankfurt Book Fair continued with more interesting presentations and exhibitions. 

The Gutenberg Museum demonstrated Gutenberg's printing press. Attendees could experience Gutenberg's invention live and print themselves at a printing workshop. CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, showcased its science. 

As well as a range of books looking at the science of CERN and the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the laboratory unveiled a new interactive LHC-time-tunnel display. 

The organisation also announced collaboration with games developer Rovio to develop new educational resources for children linked to their award-winning Angry Birds game. Barnes & Noble made a presentation entitled 'Tablets aren't just for grown ups anymore.' 

In showing a number of examples of products for its Nook, Barnes and Noble's premise was that it knows kids books and kid's apps and loves content for kids in every format. 

The Frankfurt Book Fair organises the participation of German publishers at around 20 international book fairs. It maintains the most visited website worldwide for the publishing industry at and its directory of decision-makers in the book and media industries features around 30,000 contacts.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Frankfurt Book Fair studies classroom of future

Pakistan News & Features Services

The Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 has lived up to the billing of being the premier event of its kind. As in the past, the fair has come with exceptional side-events making it very memorable. 

The digitalization has taken the world by storm and the point was highlighted during the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012. 

With children being one of the central themes this year there was lot of novel ideas on display. The participants were passed on the message by the educational experts and interactive content producers that the digital world is knocking at the classroom door but it is not simply a matter of shifting from paper to screen. 

While portable devices such as the smartphone and tablet computer have revolutionised daily life for millions of people by enabling access to the Internet, schools have largely remained untouched by new technology. But children paradoxically tend to be more comfortable at handling the devices and are sometimes viewed as intuitively digital. 

However, the experts believe that schools will not switch to digital overnight and that any transition would not be without growing pains. 

US consultant on education and digital matters Ron Reed was of the opinion that there was "a precious limited number of minutes in a day" when meaningful interaction occurred between a teacher and a student. 

"So there is a requirement that the content or the tool must contribute, and it must be more than a 'nice to have', it must be 'must have' and replace something with greater efficiency and power," he said. 

He warned against focusing only on a digital transition rather than a change in the overall way children learn. "It's clearly about methodology, not just tools, and it needs to be not about products, it needs to be about practices," he said. 

Even with the advent of new technology in the classroom, experts believe the role of the teacher will not gradually disappear and will continue to be the key to learning, albeit with digitalised backup. 

"You still need supportive teachers and good teaching without that, technology would become nothing more than a distraction in the classroom," Linda Zecher, Chief Executive of school book publishers Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), thought. 

According to the experts, teachers need the training to ensure that embracing the new technology bears fruit and the benefit is passed on to the students. 

Four schools in the US state of California used a curriculum developed on the I-Pad by HMH to teach algebra, Zecher said, noting that when it was correctly implemented, students' results increased markedly, whereas no improvement was seen when it was poorly put into practice. 

Lewis Bronze, Chief Executive and co-founder of Espresson Education, a company offering interactive content to teachers and schools, stressed the need to follow up once the devices were in schools. 

"Commercial companies which sell products to schools have the responsibility not to just sell and walk away, but to help the teachers implement the products that we sold them," he shared.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Literature and film mix at Frankfurt Book Fair

Pakistan News & Features Services

Films based on well-known books have not been uncommon over the years but one man who has done it more successfully than many of his contemporaries is Stephen Daldry, the Oscar-nominated British director and producer. 

Daldry was among the galaxy of international film, publishing and multimedia personalities who shared their insight into storytelling at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012. 

Having directed and produced films like ‘The Hours’, ‘The Reader’, ‘Billy Elliot’ and ‘Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close’ which were based on novels, he reckoned that the novelists now more readily embrace the adaptation of their works onto the big screen. 

“Authors in the past had often been dismissive of movie adaptations of their work but things have changed in the last 10 or 20 years. There used to be a point where novelists who had written a book would be quite dismissive about cinema, wouldn't care, you know, sold the rights, get as much as you can, you know, basically considered it an inferior art form," Daldry told audience during the Frankfurt Book Fair. 

"That certainly is not my experience. All the writers, the novelists I've worked with have been involved from the very beginning, right the way through to the final edit or final preview with audiences," he remarked. 

"The screen writers and original authors tend to work together and the original authors have been, and are, incredibly respectful about it being a totally different art form," Daldry felt. 

He disclosed said he had to approach each adaptation differently, adding: “The story will dictate the form, the story will dictate everything.”

When questioned about the crossover between different forms of media to create new platforms for storytelling, Daldry said he was excited by the idea that you could do different things.

Multiple Oscar-winner Richard Taylor, Creative Director of Weta Workshop, the New Zealand-based animation and special effects studio famous for productions, spoke about the challenges of adapting works by J.R.R. Tolkien. 

"No decision is taken lightly. It's unbelievably painful at times trying to find the core essence of Tolkien. It's all hidden, all through the back material, between the lines, in the life of the author. That's how you get to the heart of the images on screen," he shared, emphasizing that it’s impossible for filmmakers to ignore today's multimedia world. 

"Modern marketing of intellectual property development is using every platform possible to try to create a swell of interest," Taylor pointed out.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Wealth of new deals taking place in Frankfurt Book Fair 2012

Pakistan News & Features Services

The ongoing Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 has been witnessing a wealth of new deals, including ‘frenzied’ bidding for Egmont's BZRK series, and a second Led Zeppelin title. 

Michael Grant’s new young adult thriller series BZRK is reported to have has hit the half a million pound mark in foreign rights sales, selling into five territories: France, Germany, Holland, Norway and the US. 

Egmont, which is selling world rights, has reported ‘frenzied’ bidding from a number of other territories for the three-book series. 

The title is Egmont’s first cross-media product, which brings together books and gaming. American author Grant is best known for his Gone and The Shadow Gang series. 

The digital gaming element of the book is the Alternate Reality Game (ARG) that has been available since September in the UK via multiple channels, including an iOS/Android game app, on the hub website and social networks.

The series has been co-developed by leading ARG writer Rich Silverman, whose credits include games for TV drama 'Heroes' and Oscar-winning film 'The Dark Knight.'

Egmont will release the first book of the series in February as one of the lead titles in its new YA imprint Electric Monkey. 

“We’ve been completely overwhelmed by the level of early interest in this book. By acquiring titles of this quality, our new imprint Electric Monkey is securing its position in the YA market globally,” Gillian Laskier, Group Sales Director for Egmont UK, was quoted as saying. 

Random House has sold its forthcoming Rod Stewart memoir into three territories, to Globo in Brazil, Mondadori in Italy and Random House Germany.

Random House Group UK and Random House US jointly acquired world rights to the memoir of the former Faces frontman this autumn. 

Janklow & Nesbit UK’s Tim Glister has sold at auction UK and Commonwealth rights to Evil Genius, a ‘lifestyle guide like no other’ by Joshua Blackburn, to Rosemary Davidson at Square Peg Books.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Frankfurt Book Fair focus on children's literature

Pakistan News & Features Services

Children are the leaders of tomorrow and who are supposed to know and understand it better than the publishers who take pride in developing books that help to educate and guide them in the most crucial phase of life. 

The participants of the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 seem to be paying greater attention to children’s literature than ever before. It has become a sector worthy to be considered as a driving force in publishing. 

The children are one of the central themes of the Fair this time round. 

“Children’s books have been doing very well around the world. In the last 12 months, children’s publishing has been the top category in general trade publishing, leading families, readers into the bookstores," Richard Robinson, President and Chief Executive of Scholastic, a firm engaged in the publishing and distribution of children’s books, was quoted as saying during a session with the media ahead of the fair’s inauguration. 

"Children’s publishing, always an important but somewhat under-recognized part of the book industry, may likely become the leader in pioneering new forms of reading because as we all know from watching babies with iPads, children are intuitively digital readers," Robinson added. 

 ”Around 1,500 publishers who deal exclusively with the children’s and youth market are expected at the showcase,” Juergen Boos, Director of the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012, remarked. 

“Electronics giant Sony and Nintendo, the titan in electronic games, are among about 7,400 exhibitors at the five-day fair reflecting innovations in an industry where content is king. Children's and youth media are a prototype for what is happening in the publishing industry but also for what is happening at the moment socially," Boos was quoted as saying. 

"In order to keep up with the changing reading and learning habits of future generations, we need to constantly create new formats and develop and expand popular topics and trends," the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 reckoned.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Top publishers foresee bright prospects for E-books

Pakistan News & Features Services

All eyes remain focused on the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 from October 10 to 14. Hailed as the biggest book and media fair of the world, now in its 64th year, it continues to catch the imagination of the audience. It’s living to the tradition of being exciting, enlightening, innovative and truly colourful. 

The ‘Global 50’ CEO panel at the Frankfurt Book Fair, during the past few years, has been bringing together CEOs from major publishers to discuss the state of the world publishing industry. 

This year, however, organizers brought about a change in policy and instead invited executives from some of the world’s major digital and retail platforms to speak. Their message was loud and clear: E-books are a global game-changer for the book business. 

This year’s panel included Santiago de la Mora (Google), Jamie Iannone (Barnes & Noble), Elodie Perthuisot (Fnac), Michael Serbinis (Kobo) and Venkat Valliappan (India Plaza) with Rudiger Wischenbart, an international publishing consultant, being the event moderator. 

The panelists were unanimous in their thoughts on how they foresee the e-book market playing out and what impact will have on the traditional players in the publishing industry? Not surprisingly, they all of them foresee awesome growth on the horizon, and despite the short-term challenges, benefits for publishers and booksellers as well as the readers. 

“We are strong believers in the expansion of the book market and we believe everybody in the content ecosystem will be benefit,” Santiago de la Mora reckoned. 

The dawn of the e-book market was great for publishers and booksellers, because, at its core, it was great for readers. For under $100 you can start reading on an e-ink device. From a global nature, access to books in multiple languages becomes easier accessing works by independent authors or small publishers becomes easier. We like to say you’re just eight seconds from finding a book to starting to read it. That’s really a game-changer,” Jamie Iannone thought. 

“We look at this as the beginning of a 25-year cycle. Unlike some others in the field, we have been global from the beginning. Our board thought we were nuts, this little Canadian company that was going to try to sell in all the countries simultaneously. But we built a partner model, which I think so far is unique in the industry, where we power booksellers and work with publishers to create a win-win situation,” Michael Serbinis remarked. 

The focus on e-books worked well for the annual CEO panel, which usually focuses on the results of the The Global 50 rankings, compiled under the aegis of French trade publication Livres Hebdo with Wischenbart. It will be even more interesting to see where the market stands during the next few years.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Spotlight on New Zealand as Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 opens

Pakistan News & Features Services

The world’s largest book fair has opened in the bustling metropolis of Frankfurt, Germany, with 7,300 publishers from more than 100 countries in attendance. New methods of publishing are a hot topic at the five-day meeting, with New Zealand selected as the country taking centre stage. 

Wellington poet Bill Manhire paid tribute to some of the country's finest writing talent at the opening ceremony of the Frankfurt Book Fair 2012 on October 9. 

With New Zealand being the guest of honour at this year's fair, it will feature hundreds of Kiwi books and saw more than 80 New Zealand books translated into German.

Manhire addressed the 1700-strong crowd at the opening ceremony, highlighting New Zealand's greatest literary minds such as Katherine Mansfield, Janet Frame and Patricia Grace. The crowd was also treated to a reading by children's author Joy Cowley who read from her book Snake and Lizard, which has recently been translated into German. 

More than 65 New Zealand authors are currently in Frankfurt to promote the country's literature. The country's publishing industry is hoping for a boost, with only about 10 books by its authors being published in New Zealand each year. 

A multimedia pavilion has been erected, which takes viewers on a journey into the creativity of New Zealanders. 

The pavilion is set in twilight under a starry sky and resembles an island surrounded by water. 

A Kiwi actor narrates the story which plays out projected onto a set of giant screens, and incorporates sounds and footage from natural New Zealand. 

Some 1000 authors are present, among them 2009 Nobel Literature Prize winner Hertha Müller. The five-day fair is the world's biggest market-place for the rights to translate books. 

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle and New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister Simon William were among the guests attending the event. 

"The greatest natural resource of the German people is not under our feet but between our ears," Westerwelle remarked during the grand opening ceremony.