GIBRALTAR could have a stand at the next London Book Fair after members of its National Book Council visited this year’s event.

Davina Barbara of the Gibraltar National Book Council said the visit to London’s huge Olympia Exhibition Centre in Kensington last April was ‘a positive and valuable experience’.

Barbara said she had learnt how ‘how small territories like Malta and Estonia go about promoting their language, identity and writing’ in a government statement.

The three-day event on April 18-20 brings together hundreds of writing professionals from all over the UK and abroad.

Gibraltar Cultural Services organised the visit to the book fair ‘to look at the value of having a Gibraltar stand at next year’s festival’, GCS said in a statement.

It hopes a stand will help in ‘promoting and representing local authors and their work’.

The local book council, founded only this year, wants to to ‘promote Gibraltar, its linguistic identity, its literature and writers’.

Its members met with major organisations like the British Council, Literature Island and the Book Council of Wales.

It also held meetings with Literature Across Frontiers, Barefoot Books and the Maltese Book Council.

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The group said it will now look at ‘how they could incorporate some of Malta’s ideas and strategies into Gibraltar’s model’.

Both book councils ‘exchanged ideas on possible future collaboration’, the government statement said.

Gibraltar has close migrational, historical and social ties with Malta, now a country in its own right inside the EU.

Professionals in the industry looked at the challenges facing the book industry during the three days.

Gibraltar’s delegation attended seminars on eBook publishing, author marketing strategies and book cover design.

Barbara said the group ‘learned so much’ at the London Book Fair, lessons they will put into action promoting Gibraltar’s unique literature.


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