Leipzig Book Fair bannersDr Lyn Marven was one of 33 translators from around the world invited to participate in the International Translators’ Workshop run by the Literarisches Colloquium Berlin last week. The programme aims to give an insight into contemporary German language literature and to facilitate links between translators working on German literature.

Panel discussion with publishers, chaired by programme leader Jürgen Jakob Becker of the LCB

Hosted in the Collegium Hungaricum in the centre of Berlin, the week included talks from notable literary critics and commentators, discussions with publishers, information about translation funding programmes, a number of readings with authors including Benjamin SteinSvenja Leiber, and German Book Prize winners Kathrin Schmidt and Melinda Nadj Abonji, as well as a visit to the foreign rights section of publishers Suhrkamp Verlag.

The second half of the week-long programme was a trip to the Leipzig Book Fair, where highlights included the award of the Book Fair Prizes for Best Translated Fiction, Best Non-Fiction, and Best Fiction, readings by Chamisso Prize winners, and the Lange Leipziger Lesenacht (Long Night of Reading).

The programme was fascinating – informative and authoritative – and it was a pleasure to meet so many translators working on German literature from as far afield as Baku and Buenos Aires. I particularly enjoyed the readings by so many interesting young authors – and the Leipzig Book Fair gave me the opportunity to meet in person writers I have translated, such as Ulrike Draesner.

Tauben fliegen auf: Internationales Treffen der Übersetzer deutscher Literatur was supported by the LCB, the Goethe Institut, Traduki, S. Fischer Stiftung and the Robert Bosch Stiftung. You can read more about the Leipzig Book Fair (in German) at the Goethe Institut’s Found in Translation blog and the Robert Bosch Stiftung Leipziger Buchmesse blog.