• Vagabonds at 'Reaching the World' Festival, Bangkok, November 2012.

    It's been a busy month for Vagabond Press and our contributors. During November Lionel Fogarty, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Adam Aitken and Michael Brennan all headed to Bangkok, the UNESCO World Book Capital for 2013, to take part in the first festival held by the Asia Pacific Writers and Translators Association, 'Reaching the World'. Gathering together around a 100 writers from the region, the festival laid the groundwork for the association to grow and develop over the coming years and promote better cultural understanding and engagement across national boundaries. Along with the business end of things, there were plenty of great readings, good feeling and new friendships and collaborations generated. 

    It was an especially productive week for the press as we are now starting to collaborate with the great Thai poet and SEA Award winner Zakaria Amataya and Thai editor and publisher Kittiphol Sarakanonda, with the aim of adding the first 3Poet Volume from Thailand to our rapidly growing Asia-Pacific list which will start in May 2013 (more news soonish). Thanks to Zakaria we're now looking at printing in Thailand and then running distribution out of Japan and Australia, so as to reduce postage costs for readers outside of Australia. We're also really thrilled to have started talking to Jhoanna Lynn B. Cruz from the Philippines, Bernice Chauly from Malaysia, Kyoko Yoshida from Japan and Eliza Vitri Handayani from Indonesia about the series. With Adam Aitken's first prose work 100 Letters Home due for release next year, and Lionel Fogarty's memoir in the works, we're extremely excited about the start of our prose list in 2013.

    Over the last two years, we have been building contacts in Asia Pacific, seeking out editors and translators to work with us on what we hope will become one of the leading series focused on Asian Pacific Writing. At present we've been working with Nguyn Tiên Hoàng (Vietnam/Australia), Yasuhiro Yotsumoto (Japan), Robert Nery (Philippines/Australia) and Ouyang Yu (China/Australia). Our aim is to create a network of editors, translators and writers so that the literatures of each country are self-representing. We're not interested in offering an Australian view of other regional literatures but work want to work with a range of Asian Pacific editors, translators and writers deeply involved in each country's literature. We want to open a space up for people working in other literatures to introduce English readers to their work, voices, realities, poetics, practices and perspectives. By working in friendship and collaboration with a small group of likehearted people, we aim to bring new work into English that might not otherwise be available and that will assist greater cultural knowledge and understanding across national and language boundaries. Our plan is to produce beautifully crafted affordable 100 page print editions in English and equally beautifully designed bilingual ebook editions. Following the start of the 3Poet Volumes, we will also produce single poet volumes as well as branching out into prose works.

    In May 2013 we are aiming to release 3Poet Volumes of poetry from China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Japan and Thailand, including work from Shu Cai, Yi Sha, Yang Xie, Roland Tinio, Jose Lacaba, Rio Alma, Lưu Mêlan, Nhã Thuyên, Lưu Diu Vân's, Shuntaro Tanikawa, Masayo Koike, Yasuhiro Yotsumoto, Zakaria Amataya, Uthen Mahamitr, Alosha Viengpong, among others. In addition, as part of the new series we're hoping to launch two anthologies 7 Brothers and 7 Sisters edited by Lionel Fogarty and Ali Cobby Eckermann respectively, representing key voices from Indigenous Australian writing that mainstream Australian literary publishing has not recognised or represented.

    So 2013 is looking busy. We need your support to make all of this happen. So please for xmas and new years buy a book or two to stuff your stockings and minds with some of the most risk-taking writing about.

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