My word of the month for December is EMBRACE – difficult in these noli me tangere times, but still. We’re leaving the EU but I fully intend to Embrace Europe. It may be “Good-bye EU”, but it is “Hello Europe”!
I want to embrace all of you too – warmly, with gratitude – for making this past year bearable and, dare I say? – occasionally very enjoyable.
I embrace those of you who have donated money to keep our magazine and website going (see our donors list below*). We have been without regular funding for one year so every penny has been helpful. Thank you. In the new year we plan to apply for another ACE grant and launch a Kickstarter campaign. It is clear from your kind words that you need us – and – Big Embrace coming: we need you too!
I embrace the authors, translators, publishers, editors, illustrators, festival directors, literature prize judges and booksellers who have performed par excellence through the pandemic and participated in our work this past year. Not easy, as most of it was online and under the Brexit-Covid-Cloud but we did it, and it was a triumph.
I embrace my team without whom I would be a hollow hologram of my former self.Check out their lovely Zoom-faces in our festive gallery: Anna Blasiak, West Camel, Mihai Andrei, Nikki Mander, Emma House, Max Easterman, Alyson Coombes (now teaching) – and ta da! – two fresh faces, language-translation-graduates Alice Banks and Rosie Eyre, who have joined us until summer 2021 – ako “Alice in ELNetLand” and “Rosie The Riveter 2”. You can reach all of us via firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of my Festive Embrace I’d like to offer you a few gifts from under our ELNet tree: the Romanian Riveter magazine and the filmed recordings from our Romania Rocks Festival, all in one easy-to-access festive bundle. Similarly, we have all the recordings from November’s ELIT European Literature Days in Krems, Austria, which I helped host from my red chair in Wiltshire. Catch the interviews with Sjón, AL Kennedy, Petina Gappah and many more great Europeans.
Tomorrow evening (02.12.20) you can Embrace Europe by tuning in to our debate on the future of Britain and Europe, hosted by the Goethe-Institut London, with a tremendous panel and chaired by me. You can Embrace Switzerland too on Monday 07.12.20 when our Literally Swiss team runs the first-ever UK-Swiss Publishing Day on behalf of the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia. A packed day of live presentations. You are welcome to join the audience, although the pre-arranged publishers’ meetings will take place behind closed digital doors. Details here. At the end of December, Literally Swiss is bowing gracefully out and handing over the UK-Swiss reins – and all our uneaten Swiss chocolate – to our literature colleagues at Pro Helvetia in Zurich, Reina Gehrig and Eva Stensrud. Don’t forget the beautiful European Poetry Festival too, curated by Steven Fowler, featuring some very embraceable poets from Switzerland and the rest of Europe.
As this newsletter covers December and January, a reminder that our Riveting Reviews continue during both months, with the deadlines of 18th December for publishing on 21st, then 11th January for publishing on 15th. If you’d like to submit a review, please contact our Editor, West Camel, at email@example.com. In March we will be publishing The Dutch Riveter, and – news just in – in the autumn of 2021, The Italian Riveter.
That, ofcourse, is a reminder to me to flag up our regular monthly columns,The Italianist by Katherine Gregor and Poetry Travels with Anna Blasiak.
Happy festive season. Embrace the good things in life and accept my final festive embrace by listening with me to Billie Holiday singing “Embraceable You”.
Love, Rosie the Riveter