The Australia Council for the Arts has today committed
to continue its successful Visiting International Publishers (VIPs) program
alongside the 2016 Sydney Writers’ Festival in May.
Executive Director Arts Strategy Dr Wendy Were said the Council was delighted
to be able to continue this important program in support of Australian
literature. For over a decade the Council has used the successful VIPs model to
promote rights sales of Australian titles in international markets and
strengthen links between Australian publishers and the international publishing
“The Australia Council
is committed to growing the profile of Australian arts by identifying and
supporting strategic initiatives that showcase Australian work to new markets
and audiences,” Dr Were said.
“Our recent independent
research into international arts activity has confirmed that Australia Council expertise,
networks and introductions have been critical in getting Australian artists and
arts organisations into international markets and VIPs provides a vital bridge
between Australian writers and the international market.
“It is one of the Council’s
key international programs and is crucial to bolstering the sales and networks
of Australian publishers and thus the income and international profile for
“As part of the
program, international publishers and literary agents are brought to Australia
to attend an intensive week-long program of meetings, events and industry
discussions alongside a leading Australian writers’ festival to showcase Australia’s
literary talent and build audiences for Australian writers.
Since its inception in
1998, the VIPs program has welcomed over 220 international editors, publishers
and literary agents to Australia and generated up to $1 million a year in
international rights sales for Australian writers.
Dr Were said the key to
VIPs’ success was the extensive and ongoing industry consultation and
engagement with the program, the continued quality of the international
publishers and the growth in territories represented, enabling important
cross-cultural business understanding as well as increased opportunities for
formed through this program are now part of an invaluable and active
international network accessible to all Australian publishers.”
“The 2016 VIPs program will
also build on this year’s successful inclusion of festival directors from India
and Indonesia, acknowledging the important role festivals play in the promotion
have become an important platform for authors to connect directly with readers
and reach new audiences. Australia is fortunate to have a number of world-class
writers’ festivals which attract huge audiences and showcase leading writers
from Australia and overseas. We are pleased to be partnering with the Sydney
Writers’ Festival for the 2016 program, enabling international publishers and
literary agents to increase their knowledge of Australian literature and meet
some of our most esteemed writers.”
“Along with initiatives
such as VIPs, since 1998 the Australia Council has supported Australia’s
participation at major international books fairs, such as the Frankfurt Book
Fair and others including Bologna, London and Taipei."
The Australia Council
supported the Australian Publishers Association in the March grant round to
represent publishers and literary agents to the 2015 Frankfurt Book Fair in October.
VIPs will be held
alongside the Sydney Writers’ Festival from 16 to 22 May 2016.
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