By Solomon Nda-Isaiah, Dubai
…Second phase of literary initiative to be rolled out in 2018
1001 Titles – an initiative by the Sharjah-based Knowledge with Borders (KwB) – dedicated to supporting the publication of original Arabic language books by UAE-based publishers, announced the successful completion of the first phase. Over two years since it was launched in 2016, the project has published 1,001 first-edition Arabic titles that represent a variety of subjects and genres.
The announcement was made at the ‘1001 Titles’ pavilion at the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF 2017), which is currently celebrating its 36th edition at Expo Centre Sharjah.
Majd Al Shehhi, Manager of the ‘1001 Titles’ initiative, said: “At 1001 Titles, we continually work towards furthering the cultural and intellectual achievements of the emirate of Sharjah. Thanks to the unparalleled support of Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, the first phase of the initiative has been a big success where we reached our target of publishing 1,001 new high-quality Arabic titles.
“We are gearing up to launch the initiative’s second phase in the first quarter of 2018, where the next 1,001 titles will include 301 by local authors, and 700 by publishers that are members of the Emirates Publishers Association (EPA). With an estimated budget of AED 5 million, the second phase will be implemented over 2018 and 2019. Both Emirati authors & Publishers are welcome to submit their applications directly to the initiative’s management,” she added.
The first 1,001 titles of the initiative include 775 children and young adult books, 165 on literature, 20 books on human development, nine titles on religion, six books on law, four books on poetry, three titles on administration, two on history and 17 others on miscellaneous topics. All books have received a fantastic reception by publishers, readers and distributors.
The initiative’s allocated budget of AED 5 million was distributed among participating titles, which were funded either partially or entirely based on their quality and importance. The initiative also provided marketing and publicity services to authors and publishers at book fairs, as well as local, Arab and international cultural festivals.
In April 2017, the ‘1001 Titles’ initiative launched a consultancy service for publishers in collaboration with DEAIFIS Advocates & Legal Consultants to provide UAE-based local and regional Arabic publishing houses with consultancy and support, and strengthen the legal environment for the publishing sector in the UAE. It includes a package of premium consultancy services, most notably drafting and reviewing author contracts, provision of legal consultancy on copyrights, and conflict resolution regarding issues of intellectual property rights.
Themed ‘Nurturing Talent to Enrich Content’, the 1001 Titles is an initiative launched by KwB in February 2016, under the patronage of Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Founder and President of the Emirates Publishers Association and Head of the KwB Organizing Committee. The first phase of the initiative aimed to publish 1,001 first-edition Arabic books, enhancing the UAE’s collective intellectual product and ensuring the sustainability of the publishing industry in the country and beyond. The initiative also supported Emirati authors to write more books, facilitate publishing houses and increase their competitiveness on regional and global scales.
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