Time to celebrate literature

New Year’s revelries done, it is the time of the year to indulge your inner bibliophile, at the literature festivals and book fairs being organised throughout the month and beyond. Wherever you may live in India, from down South to up North, rest assured, you will have a festival venue near your home.

23 Jan 2015 | By Dibyajyoti Sarma

Some of the events are already over, including the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (14 to 18 January), The Hindu Lit For Life (16, 17 and 18 January), and Crime Writers Festival (17 and 18 January). Others like the Chennai Book Fair 2015 (9 - 21 January), Jaipur Literature Festival and Hyderabad Literary Festival are on as you read this.

PrintWeek India offers you a handy rundown on the important festivals and what to expect where.

Jaipur Literature Festival
The mother of all literature festivals in India, JLF is from 21 to 25 January, at Diggi Palace, and like every year, it boasts a guest list almost 300 delegates, which includes the who’s who of the literary world, from Nobel laureates to local language writers, Man Booker prize winners to debut novelists, who come together for five days of readings, debates and discussions.

Another import event that took place on the sidelines of Jaipur Literature Festival was Jaipur Book Mark 2015, which was held at at Narain Niwas, Jaipur, on 21 and 22 January.Especially focused on the publishing community, the topics of discussion included ‘Is publishing unbankable?’, ‘Digital platforms: the untapped territories,’ ‘Libraries and archives: Time travellers extraordinaire’, ‘Who is the book?’ and ‘Rethinking translations: relocating the centre’, among others.

Hyderabad Literary Festival

On from 23 to 26 January, at Hyderabad Public School, Begumpet, the festival, organised by Hyderabad Literary Trust, in association with the Government of Telangana, will have Poland as the guest nation. The festival pays special attention to the writing in one Indian language at each edition and this year, Urdu will be the language in focus. Noted speakers include Javed Akhtar, Christopher Doyle and GN Devy, among others.

Kolkata Literary Meet (Kalam)
To be held at Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata, from 23 to 27 January, notable speakers at the meet include Ruskin Bond, Rajdeep Sardesai, Jaya Bachhan. The event also promises to showcase Urdu poet Javed Akhtar’s translations of Rabindranath Tagore’s works.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival
Every February, artists, performers and writers gather at the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival in the nine-day carnival. This year, the festival is from 7 to 15 February, and will see 500 events. The theme for this year’s literature section is ‘watermark’.

Lucknow Literary Festival
To be held from 13 to 15 February, the festival will be attended by social activist Shabana Azmi, writer Rakshanda Jalil, Ghazal singer Kailash Joshi, among others. The event will also celebrate the rich heritage of Lucknowi culture, with quwwalis and shayari from Lucknow’s nawabi tehzeeb. There will also be dastangoi sessions, kavi sammelans and mushayras.

New Delhi World Book Fair
To be held at Pragati Maidan, Delhi, from 14  to 22 February, the country’s premier book fair attracts participation of publishers not only from India, but from across the world. This year, the guest of honour nation will be Singapore, whereas Korea will be the focus country.

Globalocal 2015
The two-day power-packed affair aimed at the Indian publishing industry placed right before the start of New Delhi World Book Fair, on 12 and 13 February, at EROS Hotel in Delhi, Globalocal, organised by German Book Office, New Delhi, is a B2B platform integrating networking opportunities, facilitated business meetings, topical workshops, experience zone and expert-led incubators. In its sixth edition this year, Globalocal will play host to publishing professionals from India and eight other countries to convene and explore new business possibilities while exchanging and updating knowledge of market trends.