News from NORLA
Our July translator of the month is Kor de Vries from the Netherlands. He mainly translates fiction and throughout a long career has translated almost 60 books from Danish. Kor is also a consultant for Scandinavian literature and has previously worked as a lecturer in Danish at the University of Groningen, and as a Danish teacher.
His translation of Lotta Elstad’s novel I Refuse to Think will be published in July.
When the summer holidays approach it is always exciting to summarise the activities we at NORLA have carried out in our effort to open doors to Norwegian literature around the world. But this spring was turned upside-down due to the COVID-19 situation, and this meant that many of the meetings we had been looking forward to were cancelled. There were no physical book fairs in Leipzig, London or Bologna, and no international guests in Lillehammer for the Norwegian Festival of Literature.
Luckily, however, we have been able to meet digitally. Many organisers have turned things round by grasping the opportunities available within modern technology. The Norwegian Festival of Literature reinvented itself and, in collaboration with NRK, Norway’s public broadcaster, became the biggest digital festival in the Nordic region. By doing this they reached hundreds of thousands of people who would have been otherwise unable to participate. For the first time, NORLA arranged webinars for international publishers and translators who should have been our guests at this year’s festival in Lillehammer.
NORLA’s offices are closed for holidays in July. However, on our Facebook page we have the pleasure of introducing a new writer every day. We look forward to sharing highlights from last year’s packed Guest of Honour program at Frankfurter Buchmesse, as well as a presentations from other sources.
We recommend that you sit back to be entertained and also enlightened.
If you happen to read Norwegian, you might also enjoy our personal reading tips for the summer, here.
We wish everyone a great summer and happy reading!
June sees the celebration of Pride Month worldwide, and on Saturday June 27 a digital parade show will be live streamed from Oslo (12:00 CET, GMT +1).
At NORLA, we are happy to join in the celebration by sharing a selection of gay themed books available for children and young adults. The list is made by IBBY Norway (International Board on Books for Young People), and here you may read more about the books originally published in Norwegian.
Norway as Guest of Honour at Frankfurter Buchmesse 2019 is the country’s largest overall cultural initiative abroad. The main goals set for the initiative by NORLA were achieved. The goals were to renew the foothold of Norwegian literature in Germany, to create new international interest in Norwegian literature, to showcase Norway as a modern cultural nation and to revitalize the relationship between Norway and Germany through cooperation on literary and cultural projects.
The Frankfurter Buchmesse is beyond doubt the world’s most important book fair when it comes to the sale of foreign rights and international dissemination of literature in all genres. The Norwegian guest of honour status was used as an arena for the presentation of a myriad of voices from Norway, as well as sparking the joy of reading and, not least, it served as a platform for promoting freedom of speech.
June’s translator of the month is Michiel Vanhee from Belgium, who translates into Dutch. He works with books of all genres and soon his latest translation will be out; Vinland, the second novel in the popular Jomsviking series by Bjørn Andreas Bull-Hansen.
In addition to being a translator, Michiel has worked as tour guide in the Lofoten islands in 2005, 2008 and 2009 – using six* different languages! When he lived in the north, he even spent some time slaughtering salmon in the winter months. He has also had some, according to himself, rather boring office jobs in Belgium (including working in the translation department of the European Commission in Brussels) before deciding to become a full-time literary translator in 2014.
The corona pandemic has seriously affected the international book industry. Therefore, it is extra gratifying to see that the there is still a strong interest in Norwegian books and also sales of foreign rights. NORLA has obtained an overview of foreign rights to the Norwegian books sold by agents and publishers in Norway during April and May. There are 150 rights sold or renewed!
Every year the Norwegian Festival of Literature at Lillehammer is one of NORLA’s spring highlights, being the largest literary festival in the Nordic countries. As this year’s festival has gone digital so have NORLA’s two annual Lillehammer seminars for international publishers and translators of Norwegian literature. This year focusing on books for children and young adults. It has been a true pleasure getting to meet both familiar and new friends of literature, in our own living rooms.
We are pleased to share eight films made for the webinars. Here you will meet the authors and illustrators presenting their selected books for young readers. There are books in several genres, techniques, themes and for different age groups. We are confident there are new favorites in store for everyone.
Due to the corona situation, it is currently difficult to invite Norwegian authors to international festivals, launches and other events abroad. Foreign publishers, festival organizers and other parties who wish to create digital events with Norwegian authors can therefore apply for subsidy for webinars, podcasts, interviews in the form of film recordings etc. It is also possible to apply for subsidy for advertising and publicity of authors and literature programs in digital media.
Please use the standard application form, skipping to fill in travel details.
There is no application deadline
This time of year we normally set off for Lillehammer to take part in the enjoyable spring adventure which is called the Norwegian festival of Literature. This year, however, the festival goes digital (May 29 – 31) and the events will therefore be available for everyone to enjoy, all around the world!