ZIBF sets dates

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ZIMBABWE International Book Fair (ZIBF) has been set for July 27 to August 1 this year with the Indaba Conference taking place on July 27 and 28.

The ZIBF 2020 Theme is “Book Industry: The Dynamics Within”.

ZIBF chair Memory Chirere said having observed that most of the themes from 2011 to 2016 addressed developmental and philosophical issues, “the board decided to select a theme that may give us a rare opportunity to look more closely at the internal welfare and goings on of real people and institutions (big and small) in the book industry itself in Zimbabwe and Africa.

“We want to dwell on the work relations between our writers and publishers, printers, booksellers and librarians, readers for example. We are convinced that a very introspective gaze at both the open and behind the scenes of the book sector may be exciting and enriching.”

Chirere said the book industry in Zimbabwe and Africa is currently in a state that demands the evaluation of the perspectives of every stakeholder against those of others, in order to create harmony and cohesion.

“We have noticed that the book production chain in its various formats seem not to be united to address the opportunities challenges that we have in our daily relations as creators and businesspeople.

“A positively open and candid forum discussion may possibly allow all stakeholders to get a 360 degree view of the situation, understand and empathise with other groups’ positions, ultimately leading to viable solutions in taking the industry into the future.”

He added that the following could be the broad talking points:-
Why is there a general malaise and impoverishment amongst writers in Zimbabwe and Africa despite their sweat and well known good record?

Is piracy indeed all gloom and doom? Where are the opportunities and the downside?
How could we locate the efforts of the publisher in the general matrix?

Where does science and technology fit in making publishers and booksellers accountable?
What percentage of total income is made up of royalties from book sales by authors worldwide?

How do libraries and booksellers survive with low budgets and low volumes and weak literary output?
What reading materials is the market (schools, colleges, universities and individuals) prepared to pay for and why?

“We therefore urge and encourage contributors to the 2020 Indaba to come up with ideas that will benefit all participants in the book value chain,” said Chirere.

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