Thursday, December 09, 2010

We're back!

The American Literary Translator's Association has recently launched its new website, We have a shiny new Facebook Page, a snazzy Twitter feed @ALTA_USA, and to top it all off, we're back blogging here!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

A New Anthology of Writing from the Caribbean

Translator Harry Morales alerts me that an anthology edited by Thomas Glave, Our Caribbean: A Gathering of Lesbian and Gay Writing from the Antilles, is forthcoming from Duke University Press in May 2008. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Too Many Swedish Women writing Crime?

How many women are allowed to write mystery/noir novels in Sweden? At the Gothenburg Book Fair, a panel discussing whether an author's name is his or her "brand", the question came up. Sweden has had a number of successful male mystery authors, and yet for a long time, popular wisdom crowned only one woman at a time as the "deckardrottning", or "The Queen of Crime". Now there are twelve well-known women writing crime fiction. Is twelve too many? One male author, Leif G W Persson, criticized women crime authors as writing works more fit for a girl's horse magazine (say, perhaps, the Swedish equivalent of Seventeen) and not as good as the hard-boiled male writers. The debate became the flash point of the summer and fall literary debates. Do women write as well as men? Or is their financial success a result of dumbing down their material? Or, if they are not writing about single middle-aged men who drink too much, they are not writing "real" books? Gee, and I thought that Sweden was enlightened! Another panel took up a "chick-lit" debate. Here the question was, are women writers who are successful purveyors of "chick-lit" since their audience also tends to be female? Maria Ernestam and Kajsa Ingemarsson replied succinctly and persuasively that this was sour grapes on the part of some male authors, and that the men should be happy that women support the book buying industry, as their money is what brings men their livlihood. It seems to me that Swedish women, although one of their own, Selma Lagerlöf, was a Nobel prize winner in the past, still have a long way to go to be recognized for their work.
On the translation front, however, a new initiative bringing translation subsidies to translators is being put into place. The new initiative will no longer be run by the Swedish Institute, but rather by the Ministry of Culture, and it will begin in January 2008 with a pot of 7 million Swedish crowns. The government seems to have realized that if Swedes do not support their literature, who will? I applaud this initiative and am waiting to see how it will play itself out in real life. This is good news for all who would like to see more Swedish literature out in the rest of the world.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Book/ Mark Quarterly Review Seeks Reviews of Works in Translation

Calling all book reviewers: Book/ Mark Quarterly Review editor Mindy Kronenberg welcomes submissions of book reviews of works in translation. She writes, "Our main criteria rests upon the publisher being a small press (independent, university, 'alternative,' cooperative, even quality self-published books). We especially need work by reviewers who might specialize or have particular interest in these books." Interested? Contact Mindy Kronenberg via cyberpoet (at) optonline (dot) net

Monday, August 27, 2007

Save the Date--- New York City Sept 12th--- Mexico: A Traveler's Literary Companion

Wednesday, September 12, 2007 at 6 pm, reading and discussion of Mexico: A Traveler’s Literary Companion, an anthology of Mexican fiction and literary prose by some of Mexico’s best-known authors. With editor CM Mayo, writers Pedro Angel Palou and Monica Lavin, and translators Harry Morales and Daniel Shapiro. Sponsored by the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York. Free Admission. King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center at New York University, 53 Washington Square South (between Thompson and Sullivan Streets)Info: 212.998.3650.
(Mexico A Traveler's Literary Companion is part of the widely-lauded Traveler's Literary Companion series published by Whereabouts Press. Other titles include Greece, Italy, Israel, Chile, Cuba, Costa Rica, Japan, and many more.)

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Calque's Issue #2--- and a call for submissions

Issue # 2 of Calque has just landed on my desk in Mexico City. It's a terrific new tri-annual journal of literary translation, a really magnificent effort by editors Steve Dolph and Brandon Holmquest. This issue features a cornucopia of outstanding writers and translators, among them, Luis Cernuda and Natasha Wimmer. Calque has a call for submissions out for the next issue, so translators, check this out.