Twelfth edition of the Author-Publisher Dialogues

On 22 November, the Federation of European Publishers organised its 12th edition of the Authors-Publishers Dialogue with the Spanish writer Javier Cercas, his Spanish publisher Juan Cerezo (Editorial Director, Tusquets Editores) and his Italian publisher Luigi Brioschi (President, Guanda Editore). The event gathered around 30 participants, of which 10 MEPs, as well as 9 MEPs’ assistants. The event was hosted by MEPs Iban Garcia del Blanco (S&D, ES) and François-Xavier Bellamy (EPP, FR):

Iban Garcia del Blanco (Spain, Socialists and Democrats/ S&D), member of the Legal Affairs (JURI) and Culture (CULT) Committees.
François-Xavier Bellamy (LR/ European People’s Party), member of the Industry and Research (ITRE) and CULT committees.
Emmanuel Maurel (Gauche Républicaine et Socialiste), member of the International Trade, CULT and JURI committees.
Thomas Frankowski (Poland, EPP), member of the CULT committee and author of the report on the book.
Ladislav Ilčić (Croatia, ECR), member of the ITRE committee
Maria Manuel Leitão Marques (Portugal, S&D), member of the Internal Market and Consumer Affairs (IMCO) and JURI committees
Diana Riba i Giner (Spain, Greens/EFA), member of the CULT and Civil Liberties (LIBE) Committees
Inese Vaidere (Latvia, EPP), member of the Economic (ECON) and Environment Committees (ENVI).
João Albuquerque (Portugal, S&D), sub. member of the CULT and ENVI committees
Isabel Carvalhais (Portugal, S&D)

MEP Garcia del Blanco during his introductory speech

Iban Garcia del Blanco introduced the Dialogue by stressing the importance of protecting copyright. Javier Cercas quoted a philosopher who said that the success of a book is the result of the meeting between the private obsession of a writer and the public need of a society and highlighted the universal nature of literature. He stressed the importance of having a publisher, even abroad, in order to benefit from a strategy and contacts with booksellers: "The bookseller is the person who gives the reader the book he needs". In Catalonia, for example, it is thanks to booksellers that books become bestsellers. Luigi Brioschi observed that the challenge is to give the novel the form it deserves and that the author and publisher form a kind of couple. Juan Cerezo noted that "the merit is to have a nose".

The Spanish writer Javier Cercas (left) with his publisher Juan Cerezo

In conclusion, F.-X. Bellamy acknowledged the power of books while calling for greater transparency between authors and publishers. He pointed to the need for ethical rules on artificial intelligence, in the name of democracy. Quoting Hegel, he recalled the role of publishers in selecting what is worth publishing and noted that today all words are put on the same level and that there is competition for attention.
FEP took advantage of this exchange to raise participants’ awareness of the Late Payment Regulation.

FEP took benefit of this exchange to raise participants’ awareness of the Late Payment Regulation.

Text courtesy of Catherine Blache - Syndicat national de l’édition
Pictures: Federation of European Publishers