Second Open Central Asia Book Forum & Literature Festival Success -

Second Open Central Asia Book Forum & Literature Festival Success

The second Open Central Asia Book Forum & Literature Festival was held between 7-11th November 2013 in both London and Cambridge. Following on from the first event, held in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, in 2012, the organisers focused on bringing the works of Central Asian authors and illustrators to the UK to give local audiences a taste of the talent that is emanating from the region.

Almost 500 visitors attended 12 events spread over four days, including 2 Central Asian film previews, culture and tourism presentations, publishing roundtables, book readings and launches, award ceremonies and receptions. 15 guest speakers participated in the events, coming from 8 different countries, each with their own expertise and ideas, and they also participated in a Literature Festival on the evening of 8th November, held at the Yunus Emre Turkish Cultural Centre, allowing festival attendees the chance to hear about their work and meet the authors in person. The guest speakers were:

1. Nick Rowan ( England )
2. Erkin Agzam ( Uzbekistan)
3. Hamid Ismailov ( UK –Central Asia )
4. Shahsanem Murray, UK (presenting Begenas Sartov, Kyrgyzstan )
5. Svetlana Rakhimova ( UK –Uzbekistan )
6. Laura Hamilton, UK ( presenting Kazat Akmatov, Kyrgyzstan )
7. Robin Thompson, UK ( presenting Galina Dolgaya ,Uzbekistan)
8. Mevlut Ceylan ( UK-Turkey )
9. Ak Welsapar ( Sweden –Turkmenistan)
10. Rakhima Abduvalieva ( Germany - Kyrgyzstan )
11. Chokan Laumulin ( UK - Kazakhstan )
12. Alexey Ulko , Uzbekistan
13. Felicity Timcke South Africa
14. David Mashuri , Kazahstan
15. Frau Koch aka Dinara Bahritdinova , Uzbekistan

Similar to 2012, a literature competition was held in which 168 submissions were made across 3 categories (Literature, Translation and Illustration) with the ultimate winner, Abdulla Isa from Azerbaijan, being announced at a celebration dinner on Saturday 9th November. His book will be published by Hertfordshire Press in 2014.

Open Central Asia Literature Competition 2013 Winners Announced

The committee of the Open Central Asia Book Forum and Literature Festival 2013, which was held in the UK between 7-11 November 2013, are delighted to announce the winners of it's three categories: Literature, Translation and Illustration.

With 168 submissions from authors in over 20 different countries this was a stronger field of contestants than in last year's competition, and it made the selection of both the shortlist and eventual winners very tough. The committee thanks and congratulates all who took part.

Of the 28 participants who were shortlisted, the final 3 winners in each category were announced at a celebration dinner held at the Navruz restaurant in London on 9th November, where a number of the winners collected their certificates in person.

The winners in each category are:

Literary work

1 Abdulla Isa (Zaur Hasanov), Azerbaijan
2. Turusbek Maldibaev, Kyrgyzstan
3. Halima Ahmedova, Uzbekistan

1. David Mashuri tranlation of Durnyam Mashurova novel, Kazakhstan
2. Saadat Ibrahimova/Ian Peart, Azerbaijan-UK
3. Rahima Abduvalieva translation of Chingiz Aitmatov story ( Germany-Kyrgyzstan)

1. Asol Bilyalova, Kazakhstan
2. Irina Gogol , Kyrgyzstan
3. Hashim Kurban, Kazakhstan

The winner of the 2012 competition, Galina Dolgaya from Uzbekistan, had her winning entry published by Hertfordshire press as part of her prize. This year's Literary category winner, Abdulla Isa from Azerbaijan, will also have his work published by Hertfordshire Press. It is hoped that this tradition will be continued in next year's competition and the committee encourage both existing and new participants to apply. Further details will be released in due course.

Hertfordshire Press is a UK publishing house, part of the Silk Road Media group of companies, that seeks to publish books and authors with a special focus on Central Asia. Hertfordshire press sponsored the second Open Central Asia Book Forum and Literature festival, held in London on 7-11 November 2013.

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