Hong Kong Book Fair

SME book fair offers second life to writers

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 22 March, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 22 March, 2012, 12:00am


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Authors whose works fail to make the best-seller list will have a second chance to excite readers at the city's first book fair for small and medium-sized publishers, which opened yesterday.

The publishers offer lesser-known authors and those writing in new genres a chance to have their work published. But competing against bigger publishers is difficult.

According to one industry representative, this became evident at last July's annual Hong Kong Book Fair, organised by the Trade Development Council.

Hong Kong SME Publications Association chairman Lai Man-cheuk said because larger booksellers and publishers reserved the first two floors of the Convention and Exhibition Centre, those on the third floor - the smaller publishers - had less traffic, despite paying the same rent.

He said this was unfair and prompted the SMEs to start their own book fair. 'This is our way of airing books that have been overlooked by major bookstores,' Lai said.

Jimmy Pang Chi-ming, association vice-chairman and owner of publisher Sub-Culture, said major bookstores might only display books for 10 days. 'Our book fair will have some books published 10 years ago that you will not find anywhere else.'

Lau Sze-hong, 26, published his first Chinese novel, Hang's Night and Day, last year. It did not last long in bookshops. The novel centres on a day in the life of a man and is aimed at secondary school students. It touches on many liberal studies topics written in story form. Lau said he appreciated the second chance the fair gave him, but recognised that 'Hong Kong may not have been ready for this unconventional genre'.

The fair runs until May 19 at bb Loft , 8th floor, 204 Tsat Tsz Mui Road, Quarry Bay.