BOOKING THE FUTURE: a summer school for professionals in publishing sector

Jul 03 2018 Published by under

From July 9 to July 13, 2018, the BOOKING THE FUTURE Summer School took place in the Literary Laboratory of Mystetskyi Arsenal.

Publishers and art directors of publishing houses, sales managers and PR-managers, directors and senior bookstores’ managers with at least two years of experience in the publishing sector were invited to participate. Applications were accepted until June 18, 2018. 

The focus of the program is “New Book Marketing”. Within five working days, the following topics will be discussed in an interactive form: marketing and distribution; the role of literary agents and ways of promoting authors on the international market; the image of the publishing house and the author; book design as a marketing aspect.

Each day of the school will comprise presentations, case studies, practical exercises, modeling of own projects, group discussions and Q&A with the involvement of leading European experts.

Speakers are experienced publishers, literary agents, marketers from Austria, Great Britain, Greece, Italy, Germany, Poland, France, and the Czech Republic.

BOOKING THE FUTURE summer school lectors

Evangelia Avloniti was born in Corfu, Greece. She studied History of Art, Archaeology and Literary Translation at various institutions, including the Courtauld Institute of Art, King’s College, London, Deree – The American College of Greece and University College London. She began her career at Sotheby’s in London and then worked as an editor in ELT publishing for five years. In 2009, she founded the Ersilia Literary Agency, where she represents Greek authors in Greece and worldwide, and foreign agents and publishers in Greece. She was named a Frankfurt Fellow in 2013 and a Zev Birger Fellow in 2015.

Elodie Pazhot dreamed of selling books from the early childhood. She was fortunate to work for some time at the bookshops that had a high reputation: “Vent d’Ouest” (“West Wind”) in Nantes, “La Machine à Lire” (“Reading Machine”) in Bordeaux. Later, Elodie became a representative of the publishing house “Actes Sud”, and then a responsible officer: in the publishing house “Liana Levi” since 2004, she is in charge of commercial affairs. Her competence includes issues of distribution and sales management, contacts with bookstores, organization of commercial meetings and projects, participation of publishing house in salons and festivals, website management and management of publishing house’s pages in social networks.

Emanuele Giammarco is an Italian editor of English and French-language books, a translator (ZZ Packer’s “Drinking Coffee Elsewhere”) and an editor of Italian fiction. He graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy of the Roman University of La Sapienza in 2013. In 2015, he received a postgraduate degree in publishing and had an internship in Saggiatore, a historic Milanese publisher. In the same year, together with Stefano Friani, he founded Racconti edizioni, the first Italian publishing house specializing in short stories. The first Italian book on his editorial, Elvis Malay’s “Dal terrazzo si vede casa mia”, is on the long list of prestigious Strega award.

Karina Elm is Customer Relations and Community Manager at NetGalley Germany, a global digital galley distribution platform used by publishers and professional readers (booksellers, book bloggers and other reviewers, librarians etc.) around the world. She previously worked for Ullstein Publishers as part of the team around digital imprints Midnight and Forever and as Online Marketing Manager at Online Marketing Agency Clear Canvas in Berlin. Karina Elm is initiator and driving force behind the German Book Blog Award launched in 2017 and is currently teaching a class at the Free University of Berlin on the topic of Online Reading Communities.

Martin Vopěnka (1963) is a Jewish Czech writer, publisher, traveller and journalist. He’s the author of 20 books, 8 novels for adults and 3 young-adult fiction novels, some of which are published abroad. The themes he explores in his books go beyond those associated with Czech literature and extend to themes of strong philosophical and psychological significance. He contributes polemic articles to the national daily paper MF Dnes. In 1997 and 2012 he was a guest at the Prague Writers Festival. He is a member of the Czech PEN Club and chairman of The Association of Czech Publishers and Booksellers (since 2013). He lives in Prague.

Steve Bohme is Research Director in Nielsen Book Research UK company. He has managed the Books and Consumers survey since 1997, as well as a wide variety of other qualitative and quantitative research projects relating to the book market, and to reading and buying habits. Steve is a Member of the Market Research Society (MRS). Steve Bohme joined Nielsen when Nielsen acquired the business intelligence and commerce solutions products from Bowker in 2013. Prior to that, Steve worked at Bowker Market Research (BML) since 1994, becoming Research Manager in 1996 and Research Director in 2001. He will explain how Nielsen collects and analyses sales data and consumer insights to inform decision making across a range of functions within publishing and bookselling.

Tom Mrazauskas is working as a book designer since 2008. From 2016 he is also publishing photobooks under his own imprint Brave Books. His works have won several awards in international book design competitions. He created the design of books for German publishers (Matthes & Seitz Berlin, Verlag Hermann Schmidt Mainz and others), as well as publishers from Latvia, Lithuania, Great Britain, France, etc. Stiftung Buchkkunst invited him twice to the jury of the “The Most Beautiful Books of the World” (“Schönste Bücher aus aller Welt”). His book design and publishing experience had to be realized, so since June 2017 he is hosting an international conference on book design and publishing in Riga for designers, publishers, illustrators, printers, booksellers, font designers, programmers and publishers all over the world.

Marcin Skrabka is a lawyer, innovator, independent business analyst and consultant, owner of For many years, he has been a publisher at Wolters Kluwer Poland and Young Digital Planet (Sanoma Learning), where he created online and mobile solutions. Active member of EURead (Stiftung Lesen). The author and project manager of several dozen innovative online publishing, education, telecommunication and banking sectors. Made several startups like – an innovative online legal information system with information for social workers, or – the largest online store of literature, films and music from the Czech Republic on the Polish market. Together with the Kukatko Foundation, he created the Academy of Efficient Book Sellers to exchange know-how in such sales.

The program is organized by the EUNIC Ukraine within the framework of Cultural Bridges in partnership with the Mystetskyi Arsenal’s Literature Laboratory.

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Apr 25 2018 Published by under

UA/UK Radio Drama: about the project
‘UA/UK Radio Drama’ – is a professional program of events which is created by Mystetskyi Arsenal, the British Council and National Radio Company of Ukraine. This joint British-Ukrainian project designed to promote the development of the radio drama genre in Ukraine.

The first radio dramas in Ukraine were dated back to the 1930s when radio broadcasting, along with literature, was a powerful tool of propaganda. In the Soviet Union, radio plays were called ‘theater in front of a microphone’ and they were first broadcast live, and were recorded later. Nowadays, in Ukraine, the most common is the staging based on artistic prose. However, radio drama as a genre remains irrelevant, not trendy. Young writers almost don’t work with it, and new works are created without taking into account global trends.

The program of the project includes a competition of original radio plays, which was opened from April 25 to June 30, 2018, and opportunities for improving the professional competencies of Ukrainian radio writers, producers, directors and studio technician

UA/UK Radio Drama competition
On April 23, 2018, a joint British-Ukrainian competition ‘UA/UK Radio Drama’ was announced. Mystetskyi Arsenal, the British Council and National Radio Company of Ukraine offered writers an opportunity to try their hand in the genre of radio drama. To enter the competition, participants had to fill in the online form. In the online form, they had to attach the text and synopsis of the drama in pdf or doc format. The radio drama had to have written in Ukrainian up to 20 thousand characters with spaces. Rules of participation.
Application period was from April 25 to June 30, 2018. Here  you can find some tips on writing plays for radio from the BBC World Drama.

Competition Timeline:
April 25 – June 30, 2018 – Application period
September 3 – Announcement of the short-list
September 24-27 – Radio play writing workshop
November 13th – Announcement of the winner
November 26-30 – Radio play producer and director training
January 24th, 2019 – Premiere of the winning play on the National Radio Company of Ukraine

We received 192 applications from all regions of Ukraine. The largest number of applications was sent from Kyiv, Lviv oblast and Kyiv oblast. 143 applications fulfilled the criteria, stated in terms of competition. 42% of authors – men, 58% – women. 88% of applicants are residents of cities, 12% – of villages.

The jury
The winners were determined by the jury, which include representatives of the National Radio Company of Ukraine, Mystetskyi Arsenal, and experts in literature and theater:

– Ganna Veselovska, a theatre critic
– Natalia Vorozhbyt, a playwright, screenwriter, curator
– Nellia Danylenko,  producer of the Radio «Kultura» (Culture)
– Bohdan Zholdak, writer
– Yaroslava Kravchenko, theatre founder, producer
– Oksana Shchur, сurator of the Literary Laboratory of Mystetskyi Arsenal
– Frances Byrnes, the British BBC Radio 4 and Radio 3 playwright

On September 3, 2018, a list of finalists of the competition was announced:

Yulia Yemets-Dobronosova, Kyiv, ‘Three Minutes of Fame’
Dmytro Ternovyi, Khrakiv, ‘Ward No.7’
Oleksandr Baburov, Sumy, ‘Kiotyk’ (Small icon case)
Vitalii Peretiatko, Mykolaiv, ‘Bucket in a Bag’
Artur Zakordonets, Oslamiv village (Khmelnytskyi region), ‘The Fourth Option’
Serhii Kolinko, Poltava, ‘Two’
Oleksandr Vitolin, Kyiv, ‘The Enemy Among Us’
Iryna Borysiuk, Kyiv, ‘The Voice’
Oksana Maslova, Odesa, ‘Voices in the Head’
Yana Kostrulina, Tavriysk (Kherson region), ‘The Seventh Minute’

Educational part of the competition
Short-listed participants participated in a radio playwriting masterclass (24-27 September 2018), led by British BBC Radio 4 and Radio 3 playwright Frances Byrnes. Participants worked on their scripts, exploring a range of writing and editing techniques. Frances Byrnes loves creating for the radio and its invisible, intimate world. She began as a BBC Radio Production Trainee in 1988. Since 2005 she’s written drama for Radio 3 and Radio 4, fiction and memoir. She’s dramatised cowboy films and classic novels, and even put ballets on air.
Frances shared some of her professional secrets in the video that you can watch here:  

Later, Matt Thompson from the British production company Rockethouse conducted training on the features of the production of radio play, work with actors, the choice of sound effects, musical accompaniment, and promotion of works among radio listeners. Training was held on November 27-29.  It was a unique opportunity for aspiring directors, producers and sound engineers to gain practical experience in radio drama production from an industry leader. Matt Thompson is a very experienced radio director and producer. He has directed on location, working with actors on the street, in fields, forests but also in high end studios. The purpose is the same: to create totally believable realities from the performance of actors and the manipulation of sound.

About the winner
On November 13, 2018, the jury of the ‘UA/UK Radio Drama’ competition announced the winner. Iryna Borysyuk won the competition. Her play ‘The voice’ was produced and broadcasted by the National Radio Company of Ukraine. The play ‘Voice’ is a futuristic story that reveals the love triangle between a woman, an artificial intelligence and its creator.  Iryna Borysyuk – a literary scholar, journalist, teacher and writer. She is Ph.D. in Philology, Assistant Professor of the Department of Literary Studies at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Head of the Journalism Department of the “Odnoklasnyk” (“Classmate”) magazine. The author of more than 50 literary publications, a manual for students in philology, several dozen stories for teens.
The Ukrainian radio also noted the plays of Yana Kostrulina (‘The Seventh Minute’) and Yulia Yemets-Dobronosova (‘Three Minutes of Fame’). The authors will be asked to give rights to the production of plays, which will also be broadcast on the Ukrainian radio.

On January 24th, 2019 the premiere of the winning play was held on the National Radio Company of Ukraine. Rimma Zyubina, Andriy Sereda and Olga Gorbach participated in the production of the play. The winner awarded a prize of 25,000 UAH.

Listen to the winning radioplay ‘The Voice’ by Iryna Borysiuk.

National Art and Culture Museum Complex ‘Mystetskyi Arsenal’ is a flagship Ukrainian cultural institution that aims to promote the modernization of Ukrainian society and the integration of Ukraine into the world context, basing on the value potential of culture. Synthesis and development of contemporary art, new music, theater, literature and museum spheres are made through exhibition projects and activities of the laboratories. Thus, various arts are developing and enriching each other, while artistic and professional communities find points of intersection and mutual reinforcement. Mystetskyi Arsenal also serves as a platform for interaction with the world’s cultural community through joint cultural projects.

The National Radio Company of Ukraine is a radio platform of the Ukrainian public broadcaster by the National Public Broadcasting Company. Radio has been broadcast since 1924 and is one of the oldest broadcasters in the world. The National Radio Company of Ukraine is on three channels: the first one is a spoken news sociopolitical, the second – a youth music-talking ‘Promin’ radio, the third one – the artistic educational ‘Culture’ radio and has editorial programs in English, German, Romanian and Russian. ‘Culture’ Radio is the only radio station in Ukraine that works in the genre of radio drama. Every year, there are 215 radio theater releases (‘Theater in front of the microphone’, radio plays, radio broadcasting of theatrical performances). 

The British Council is an international organization of the United Kingdom whose goal is to expand cultural relations and educational opportunities. We establish a friendly dialogue and build understanding between people in the UK and in other countries. We do this through a positive contribution to the United Kingdom and the countries we work with – by changing lives, creating opportunities, building connections and trust. We work in more than 100 countries around the world in the fields of art and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year, we personally interact with more than 20 million people, and cover more than 500 million people online through broadcasts and publications. 

Rockethouse’s motto is ‘Unexpected and Beautiful Radio’.  Founded in 1998 it’s a bijou supplier to the BBC specialising in one off documentaries and dramas for UK National Radio and the BBC World Service. They also work with Amazon audible producing sound for long duration audio dramas such as The Jungle Book and The Christmas Carol (with Sir Derek Jacobi) and narrative computer games. 


We in the context. World literature from Baudelaire to Bob Dylan

Mar 07 2018 Published by under

The lecture project for teachers of world literature ‘We in the context’ logically continues the tendency started by the course on the Ukrainian classics from Skovoroda to Stus ‘Defined and Redefined’. We invited professional literary critics not to limit their audience to university students but to share their knowledge with teachers (not only world literature teachers but also Ukrainian literature ones and those who teach history turned out to be interested!).

This is a presentation in the popular form of aspects, the coverage of which does not always make textbooks. Lectures on world literature cover the canon from the ‘damned poets’ to Nobel laureates of the last few years.

In addition, there are many parallels between the works of foreign and Ukrainian authors (such as Baudelaire and Rylsky, Mykola Kulish and Brecht). A separate point is the lecture on the tradition of Ukrainian translation – and also the information about what factors influence whether the work will be added to the ‘golden list’ of the best books, as well as the school curriculum.

Each of ten lectures is created by author; it is unique every time, because the lecturer collaborates with the audience, responds to it and, accordingly, is not limited to the text prepared, but continues his or her monologue according to the reaction of the listeners, their level of preparation, questions and answers during the presentation of the material.

Video recordings of lectures are available in the open access – and therefore, accessible to professional audiences and everyone who wants to learn new things regardless of geography and time of day.

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The defined and redefined

Mar 06 2018 Published by under


A separate direction of the Literary Laboratory of Mystetskyi Arsenal activities is collaboration with secondary school teachers. One of the goals is to familiarize teachers with the latest trends in approaches to the study and interpretation of writers’ texts and biographies. We called this direction “Understanding literature”. 

One of the first results of our work was the lecture project “The defined and redefined”. We have suggested that professional literary critics should not be restricted to the university audience, but share knowledge with the teachers of Ukrainian literature. Such a format involves stories about little-known facts from the life of classical authors, new reading or interpretations of well-known works of the school curriculum, as well as an overview of the main theses of the key scientific monographs needed to understand the identity of each writer. This is a presentation in the popular form of aspects, the coverage that you often cannot find in texbooks.  

Each of the ten lectures that cover the school canon of literature from Skovoroda to Stus is an author’s creation; it is unique every time, because the lecturer collaborates with the audience, responds to it and, accordingly, is not limited to the text prepared, but continues his or her monologue according to the reaction of the listeners, their level of preparation, questions and answers during the presentation of the material. 

Video recordings of lectures are available online – and therefore, accessible to professional audience and everyone who wants to learn new things regardless of geography and time of day.

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