‘The last few years has seen an increased focus in the US and UK on diversity in children’s publishing, with the emphasis more and more being placed on Own Voices,’ Scholastic Australia rights manager Claire Pretyman told Think Australian after this year’s Bologna and London books fairs. Pretyman said this presented ‘a fantastic opportunity for Australian publishing, as US, UK and translation publishers increasingly look outwards for new, authentic voices’.
As if on cue, Hardie Grant Egmont sold North American rights to Erin Gough’s new queer feminist YA novel Amelia Westlake, with film agent Mary Pender signing on to represent film rights ahead of US publication. Hardie Grant Egmont publisher Marisa Pintado said the response to the title had been ‘immediate’ with ‘multiple rights deals underway after Bologna’. Gough’s first novel The Flywheel is also published by Hardie Grant Egmont.
On the topic of fairs, up to five publishing delegates from Australia will attend the China Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair (CCBF) from 9 to 11 November this year with support from the country’s peak arts funding body, the Australia Council for the Arts. The selected delegates will also have the opportunity to apply for the CCBF Shanghai Visiting International Publishers Project, a fellowship project dedicated to children’s publishing that overlaps with the fair and runs from 5 to 10 November in Shanghai.
If you’re attending either event, look out for the Australians in November.