We are pleased to introduce our new partner: the National Book Council Malta. Here is their own presentation
WHO ARE WE?
We are the National Book Council of Malta (NBC) – a public entity under the remit of the Ministry for Education – that caters for the Maltese book industry, providing various services for authors and publishers.
WHAT DO WE DO?
We are involved in a large number of activities, ranging from international and national to smaller-scale events. Our main events of the year are the Malta Book Festival and the National Book Prize, but we also set up numerous other event – such as the University Campus Book Festival – and administer public lending rights payments and
ISBN & ISMN. Additionally, we act as literary agents for authors and publishers at foreign book fairs, and coordinate, facilitate and even subsidise translations and export projects.
WHO ARE THE MALTESE WRITERS?
For those who are not very familiar with contemporary Maltese
literature, this brochure should serve as a very brief introduction.
The literature of Malta boasts a unique feature: since its earliest text
in 1450 it has been written in no less than six languages. Maltese and
English only became Malta’s official languages in 1934, therefore
Maltese was transformed from an oral means of communication to
a national written language just over 80 years ago. Malta is a melting
pot of cultures facing language choice and post-colonial identity
issues, although the Maltese language has become a signifier of
national pride, a means to establish a truly Maltese-only identity.
The National Book Council plays an important part in brokering
publishing deals and providing translation funds, as well as
facilitating direct-export funding, for instance by sending authors
abroad to festivals and book fairs. Foreign publishers releasing
translated Maltese literature are also supported in various ways.
Translation funds are allocated yearly to various projects, and
over the past two years we have commissioned four different
language translations (Arabic, Italian, English and Russian) of
the work of our national poet Dun Karm. Finding professional
translators from Maltese into other languages can prove to
be a daunting task, which is why we also invest in producing
bridge translations in English as well as foreign languages.
What does it take for Maltese literature, particularly in its
more contemporary expression, to be considered outside
of the shores of a small island and beyond the borders of
a minority language? Do contact us and one of the NBC
representatives will be happy to answer all your queries, send
you samples of Maltese literature, and discuss with you exciting
possibilities for transnational collaboration projects.