ELNet March 2020 Newsletter by Rosie Goldsmith

“We Can Do It!” – but we need your help

I find myself channelling Rosie The Riveter and her ‘can-do’ approach to life more and more – especially now. Times are hard in European Literature Land and we need you. Our coffers and cupboards are bare. In the ten years since I started this network, to offer free support to all of you working in the field of promotion of European literature and translation, I have never asked you directly for money. We’ve managed – just about – to keep afloat thanks to small grants from Arts Council England, our various project partners and through my own injection of funds – and thanks to your enthusiasm for what we do. We are so grateful. Now, in order to develop and continue our work we need donations. You all know me, Anna Blasiak (poet, translator, ELNet manager), Alyson Coombes (editor, translator) and West Camel (novelist, editor): you know how gifted and dedicated they are and how lucky I am to have them by my side. But they need to eat and pay the rent. Especially in these challenging times for Britain in Europe we are determined to keep the European Literature Network going – the Rivetermagazines, #RivetingReviews, website, blogs, films, podcasts, events, festival work, literary consultancy and translation projects – but we cannot do this without your help. We have already pursued several avenues of potential funding and are in the process of applying for a larger ACE grant. Should we achieve that ACE funding, it will still take several months to kick in and will only cover 50% of our activities (as is the agreement). Hence my shout out to you now.

Practically, here’s what we’d like you to do, if you feel you can. You can transfer any sum of money, small or large, to the European Literature Network PayPal account: contact@eurolitnetwork.com. You can also make a bank transfer to our Sounds Right Partnership account (details on request) or donate via our websiteDo contact us via email with any queries contact@eurolitnetwork.com. Our funds are managed professionally and according to all legal requirements. In a spirit of 100% transparency, here is what we will do with any immediate donations: first, I will transfer a retainer to my team; second, I will invest in our website and current projects; third, I will pay a small lump sum to Max Easterman, who manages our Sounds Right pro bono, and finally, I will pay myself. Additionally, we plan to hold fundraising events, which will ofcourse be glamorous and fuelled with ample literature, music, fun, fashion, food and drink. If anyone wishes to help us sponsor a fundraiser (venue, music, food, drink, clothes, shoes, makeup?!) please get in touch. We may also introduce a form of subscription and/or paid membership for the European Literature Network – with lots of literary goodies attached, ofcourse.

Your initial cash donations will be recognised once a month in my newsletter and on our website, but only if you like to be publicly named (please make that clear when you contact us).
Thank you sincerely from all of us. You know this means a lot.


Meanwhile, our work continues, although at more modest pace, so please understand if we can’t respond to all your requests.

The German Riveter has been an enormous success. This year we are publishing two more: The Romanian Riveter (September) and The Dutch Riveter (November), thanks to potential funding from our partners in Timisoara and Bucharest, as well as from Flanders and the Netherlands. We’ll give you more information about both magazines after London Book Fair (March 10th-12th). We’ll all be there – Anna, West, Alyson, Nikki and I – do say hello. I’m chairing a few events and hanging out with the team mainly at the Swiss Stand (the red one with the best chocolate!).

#RivetingReviews are published this month on March 27th (deadline for reviews onMarch 23rd) and next month, the deadline is April 20th for publication on April 24th). Please contact our prized editor West Camel if you have books to review:west@westcamel.net.

Also, have you read The Italianist, the first of our monthly Italian literature and translation blogs from the laudable Katherine Gregor?This is the kind of collaboration we love at ELNet: Katherine approached me with her idea and we made it happen. I am approached every day (!!) with ideas and requests – just think what we could achieve if we had funding!

As Chair of the Judges of the EBRD literature Prize 2020, I am thrilled to announce our Exceedingly Good Longlist. Along with my fellow judges Vesna Goldsworthy, Boyd Tonkin and Thomas de Waal, we have selected ten great books. See the full listhere. We love our EBRD Longlist so much that all four judges have written reviews of all ten books – our gift to all the brilliant authors, translators, editors and publishers who brought these works of literature to life. Read our Riveting Reviews EBRD Specialshere: my reviewsBoyd Tonkin’s reviews, Thomas de Waal’s reviews and Vesna Goldsworthy’s reviews. The Shortlist will be announced on March 30th and the winners on April 22nd at EBRD HQ in London. Our prize-winners’ event is free and open to all but you will need to register with the EBRD – check their website for details closer to the time: LINK https://www.ebrd.com/ebrd-literature-prize.html

Do join us on Monday 27th April for our next big ELNet networking meeting from 1800- 2030 at the Goethe-Institut London. Registration is essential, with Anna at contact@eurolitnetwork.com

We Can Do It!
Love, Rosie the Riveter

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