The SELTA Blog contains posts by individual members on topics related to Swedish and Finland-Swedish literature and culture. The views expressed in posts on the SELTA Blog are those of the respective authors of the blog posts and not of SELTA as a whole. An RSS Feed is available.
Live Literary Events Panel at SELTA's Spring Meeting
SELTA’s Chair Ruth Urbom gives a brief recap of our recent guest panel.
Friday the 13th of April turned out to be an auspicious date for SELTA members as we met for our regular spring meeting at the Embassy of Sweden in central London. After the conclusion of our official business we welcomed three guest speakers who told us about their approaches to programming live literary events.
First to speak was Anna Błasiak, who serves as the International Literature Coordinator for the European Literature Network. In that role Anna works with journalist and broadcaster Rosie Goldsmith to produce numerous events and publications focusing on literature in translation for readers in the UK. Of particular relevance for us in SELTA were the day-long seminar on Nordic Noir crime and thrillers held last year and the Nordic-themed issue of The Riveter journal, to which several of our members contributed book reviews and extracts. Based on experience from previous projects, Anna said that it helps to include a well-known UK-based person in a programme to attract larger audiences who may be unfamiliar with authors from abroad.
Next we heard from Ted Hodgkinson, Senior Programmer for Literature and Spoken Word at Southbank Centre in London. Ted gave us an overview of Nordic Matters, a year-long programme of cultural events staged throughout 2017 at Southbank Centre. After a series of ‘think-in’ brainstorming sessions with UK-based stakeholders from embassies and cultural organisations (including SELTA) and numerous visits by Southbank Centre staff to the Nordic countries – a tough job, no doubt! – programmers clustered the events around three themes: children and young people; sustainability; and gender equality. The full programme encompassed music, dance, visual arts, installations, fashion and design in addition to literature. Ted also told us about his experience co-editing (with the Icelandic author Sjón) The Dark Blue Winter Overcoat, the first pan-Nordic anthology published in English.
Our third panellist was Crystal Mahey-Morgan, who founded OWN IT! London to bring great storytelling to readers in many forms, including multimedia projects and even T-shirts in addition to traditional print books. The authors published by OWN IT! have international and diverse cultural backgrounds which are reflected in Crystal’s programming choices in putting together exciting, eclectic launch events for their titles. She recognises that people have a huge range of entertainment options available these days, so it’s important to design book-related events that can compete in a crowded field. The next title forthcoming from OWN IT! is by an author with Māori heritage, and Crystal told us she is considering including a live haka as part of that book launch.
On behalf of SELTA, I would like to thank all three panellists for sharing some insights into their efforts to bring stimulating literature to readers through innovative events.
Posted on 15th January 2018 at 16:40 by Kate Lambert
In Autumn 2017 SELTA member Fiona Graham attended the London Literature Festival at the Southbank Centre. Below is her account of Ted Hodgkinson's conversation with Jonas Hassen Khemiri, winner of Sweden's August Prize in 2015.
Posted on 24th November 2017 at 08:01 by Kate Lambert
We were joined at our AGM on 3 November by two representatives from the nascent Association of Danish-English Literary Translators – or DELT – who came to observe SELTA at work. Afterwards, we put a few questions to the founder and current Chair of DELT, Ellen Kythor.
Posted on 24th November 2017 at 07:41 by Kate Lambert
In October several SELTA members attended In from the Cold: Northern Noir, a symposium on northern crime writing, translating crime fiction and criticism. Attendees heard interviews with crime writers and gained an insight into translating crime fiction from Norwegian in a workshop and a translation slam. Below, SELTA member Fiona Graham gives an account of Henry Sutton's workshop on Purpose and prose in the modern crime novel.
Posted on 17th July 2017 at 09:31 by Ruth Urbom
In early May, SELTA welcomed four Swedish authors to London for two busy days of literary events, including a literary translation seminar for our members on the theme of ‘Nature’ and an evening programme that was open to the public. SELTA’s Chair Ruth Urbom looks back on these activities.
Posted on 10th July 2017 at 09:28 by Elin Olofsson, translated by Marie Andersson
In early May 2017, Elin Olofsson was one of four Swedish authors invited by SELTA to take part in two days of literary events in London, including a translation seminar. Participants had prepared their own translations of a brief excerpt from Elin’s 2016 novel Gånglåt (‘A Walking Melody’) and met to discuss their interpretations and word choices. In this guest post, Elin Olofsson shares her thoughts and reflections on that day’s discussion.
The English translation here is by SELTA member Marie Andersson. Scroll down for Elin’s original Swedish. Photo credit: Ian Giles.
Posted on 14th May 2017 at 17:26 by SELTA Web Editor
Swedish Book Review 2017:1 didn't quite have enough room to fit in this review by Agnes Broomé of Zulmir Bečević's book, Avblattefieringsprocessen (The Swedification Process) so we are publishing it here.
Zulmir Bečević, Avblattefieringsprocessen (The Swedification Process)
Reviewed by Agnes Broomé
In his third novel, Avblattefieringsprocessen (The Swedification Process), Zulmir Bečević continues to explore the issues of ethnicity, national identity and alienation around which his two previous books were built. This time, however, Bečević approaches his subject from a darkly satirical angle in a dystopian portrayal of modern-day Sweden.
Posted on 10th February 2017 at 19:13 by SELTA Web Editor
On 1 February SELTA members attended a workshop on writing book reviews, especially reviews of fiction in translation, run by Rosie Goldsmith of the European Literature Network. The event brought in an impressive range of reviewers, critics and editors to share their reviewing experience and opinions with an audience of aspiring reviewers, translators included. Here Sarah Death, Fiona Graham and Kate Lambert give their thoughts on three and a half hours listening to, sometimes contradictory, words of wisdom from the experts.
Posted on 25th January 2017 at 20:09 by SELTA Web Editor
Following the death of Patricia Crampton on 1 December 2016, we would like to share this piece which first appeared in Swedish Book Review 2008:2. In it Patricia Crampton talks about her sixty years as a translator, a fascinating account of a career that began with the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials and at the time of writing was still continuing with Miffy, with more than 200 children's books and over 50 books for adults in between.
Posted on 9th November 2016 at 17:14 by SELTA Web Editor
The current Chair of SELTA, Ruth Urbom, gives an account of the book bloggers’ panel who spoke to our members after SELTA’s 2016 AGM.
On 1 November SELTA members were joined by a panel of three book bloggers who spoke to us about world literature, blogging and the unexpected benefits of sharing their interest in books with other readers. All three of our guest speakers – Ann Morgan, Stu Allen and Bookwitch – have a strong international dimension to their blogs.
Posted on 27th May 2016 at 09:14 by SELTA Web Editor
SELTA member and Swedish Book Review editor Deborah Bragan-Turner looks at the story behind the new edition of a classic Swedish picture book first published nearly sixty years ago.
Posted on 19th April 2016 at 16:53 by SELTA Web Editor
SELTA member Annie Prime is, among many others things, the English translator of Finland-Swedish writer Maria Turtschaninoff. In this blog, Annie reflects on the 2016 FILI translators-in-residence and getting to know your author.
Posted on 26th January 2016 at 12:27 by SELTA Web Editor
SELTA member and regular contributor to Swedish Book Review Sarah Death reflects on the thorny issue of spoilers.
Posted on 22nd September 2015 at 09:10 by SELTA Web Editor
SELTA member and Swedish Book Review editor emerita Sarah Death offers her reflections on something of a lost treasure in the form of Wilson McArthur's 1948 travelogue, Auto Nomad In Sweden.
Posted on 12th March 2015 at 11:33 by SELTA Web Editor
SELTA member and award winning translator Fiona Graham has reviewed 'Apstjärna' by Frida Nilsson, one of the authors who spoke at SELTA's children's literature workshop last autumn. Fiona, who says she can't understand why Nilsson's works haven't yet been snapped up by an English-language publisher, has also translated a chapter of the book to give readers a taster.
Posted on 11th February 2015 at 12:34 by Ian Giles
SELTA member Sarah Death reviews novelist Elin Boardy's latest offering, which sounds a gripping yarn. Sarah has included a brief translation from the opening to provide a taste of the novel.
Posted on 17th December 2014 at 12:18 by SELTA Web Editor
In this guest blog post, Swedish author Annelis Johansson shares her thoughts about participating in SELTA's literary translation workshop in London in early November. An ethnologist by training, Annelis was twice nominated for the August Prize for Young Writers, a national award for promising Swedish writers aged 16–20. She made her publishing debut with Fågelungar (‘Baby Birds’), a young adult novel, in 2007 and followed that up with two more YA novels. Her most recent book, Herr Fikonhatt och slottet Thoufve (‘Mr Fighat and Castle Thoufve’), just out from Opal in September 2014, marks a new direction in Annelis’ writing as it is aimed at slightly younger readers. The English translation here is by Agnes Broomé, and it is followed by Annelis’ post in the original Swedish.
Posted on 4th December 2014 at 12:07 by SELTA Web Editor
Author and poet Malte Persson joined four other Swedish writers who came to London in November to participate in a day of practical literary translation workshops with SELTA members. Since his literary debut in 2002 with the novel Livet på den här planeten (‘Life on This Planet’), Malte Persson’s output has encompassed fiction, poetry, literary criticism and children’s literature. He has received a number of awards for his work, including the 2012 Tegnér Prize, and was nominated for the prestigious August Prize in 2008 for his novel Edelcrantz förbindelser (‘Edelcrantz’s Relations’). In this guest post, Malte reflects on workshop participants’ various translations of an extract from his 2012 children’s book, Resan till världens farligaste land (‘Journey to the World’s Most Dangerous Land’). The English translation here is by Nichola Smalley. Malte’s original Swedish post is included below.
Posted on 27th November 2014 at 09:00 by SELTA Web Editor
Per Gustavsson is a Swedish author and illustrator who travelled to London in November 2014 to take part in SELTA’s event on children’s and young adult (YA) literature. In addition to being a member of the Swedish Academy for Children’s Books, Per has won a number of awards for his work. His most recent prize is the 2014 Elsa Beskow plaque for the year’s best Swedish illustrated children’s book, which he received for Skuggsidan (‘Shadowside’, 2013). In this guest post, Per shares his reflections on the day of workshops and discussions. The English translation here is by Ruth Urbom, and Per’s own words in Swedish are included below.
Posted on 27th November 2014 at 09:00 by SELTA Web Editor
Cilla Naumann is one of five award-winning Swedish authors who travelled to London in early November for a day of practical translation workshops and discussions with SELTA members, other translators and postgraduate students. In one of the workshop sessions, participants compared their translations of an extract from Cilla’s young adult novel 62 dagar (‘62 Days’), published in 2011, and discussed the differences in word choice and textual interpretations that emerged from the various translations. Cilla Naumann’s blog post has been translated into English by SELTA member Nichola Smalley, and Cilla’s own words are included in the original Swedish below.
Posted on 19th October 2014 at 21:35 by Ruth Urbom
Inspired by an item in the most recent issue of Swedish Book Review, SELTA member Harry D. Watson shares his memories of living in Sweden and the course of events that led him to Swedish literary translation. Harry's translation of The Garden, a novel by Magnus Florin featuring the real-life Swedish Enlightenment figure Carl Linnaeus, was published earlier this year by Vagabond Voices.
Posted on 13th October 2014 at 17:35 by Ruth Urbom
SELTA's new website has just gone live! This blog is intended to be a space where our members can post brief items about topics they'd like to share with readers.
Posted on 16th June 2014 at 15:58 by Ruth Urbom
In this blog post, SELTA member and Swedish Book Review editor Sarah Death provides some tips on a new literary magazine from Sweden, as well as her reflections on some books she's currently reading – from Sweden and closer to home! Sarah's translation of Tomas Bannerhed's 'scintillating first novel' The Ravens was published by Clerkenwell Press earlier this year.
Posted on 2nd April 2014 at 19:00 by Ruth Urbom
Welcome to the new SELTA blog! This is a platform where SELTA members can contribute their own views on books and translation-related events and share interesting insights into their work as literary translators.
Posts on this blog reflect the individual views of their respective authors and not the views of SELTA as a whole.