RIYADH: Local authors are being invited to register to have their publications displayed at a dedicated pavilion at the upcoming Riyadh International Book Fair 2022.
The event, organized by the Literature, Publishing and Translation Commission, runs from Sept. 29 to Oct. 8 and provides a platform for local and international publishers and authors to present and sell their work.
According to a statement issued by the commission on Monday, Saudi self-published authors — those who are not represented by a publishing house — who have a legal right to sell books can apply to be part of the Saudi Author pavilion, which will display up to 200 titles on the basis of one per writer.
The works will be selected by the commission after the authors have been assessed and approved, it said.
As well as presenting the books, the literature commission will market the books and collect any sales revenue on the authors’ behalf.
The commission said the establishment of the pavilion was part of its ongoing support for local writers and would enable them to present their works to a mass audience at the fair, which is one of the largest of its kind in the Arab world.
Ya’en Allah Ali Al-Garney, a professor at the Faculty of Educational Graduate Studies at King Abdulaziz University, said he supported the idea but would like to see more help for authors.
“(It is) a good step, but it is not sufficient,” he said, adding that the commission’s support needed to continue after the fair.
Al-Garney, who is a member of the Saudi Scientific Society for Curricula and Educational Supervision, stressed the importance of supporting authors as the “mirrors of culture of society” and a powerful soft force that could help to market and bolster the positive image of the Kingdom around the world.
Prof. Abd Al-Rahman Al-Sulami, administrative director of the Jeddah Literature and Cultural Club, said that thanks to the support of the Ministry of Culture, Saudi authors were getting more institutional support than ever before.
With their skill and vision, writers had the ability to promote Saudi Arabia’s scientific, cultural and literary heritage to the world, he added.
Dr. Zaid Al-Fadhil, director of the cultural program at the Gulf Research Center, said the creation of a dedicated pavilion at the book fair would provide a platform for Saudi authors to present their books to visitors from at home and abroad.
Khalid Al-Taweel, a member of the cultural committee of the Literary Club in Madinah said: “Any step that encourages Saudi authors to present their works enhances their presence,” adding that the latest move by the literature commission reflected the ongoing evolution of the publishing movement within the Kingdom.
“Today, you can see a remarkable presence of Saudi authors through their titles, a large number of which are displayed at the Riyadh Book Fair, which is one of the biggest fairs in the Arab world and the largest of all in terms of sales,” Al-Taweel said.
As well as the new authors’ pavilion, this year’s book fair will feature a full program of cultural events, including talks, lectures and workshops.
Registration for authors is open until Aug. 30 and can be accessed at: https://bookfairs.moc.gov.sa/signup?profile=author