Davina Barbara, Head of Cultural Development at Gibraltar Cultural Services (GCS) talks to Insight about Literature Week and what
Gibraltar can expect from the event in November.
Literature Week was an event launched by Gibraltar Cultural Services on behalf of the Ministry of Culture last year to give a platform to local authors and as a way of celebrating and promoting the work being produced by writers on the Rock. It is not aimed at replacing the former Festival but more so aims to provide an opportunity for Gibraltarian authors to discuss their work and working methods, styles and research. For GCS it is another way of promoting literature, writing, books and reading and encouraging and involving a wide demographic in the event. The programme also sees authors going to the schools with workshops and presentations organised, and other features and interviews also available on different platforms. This year we decided to add an international dimension too, with a few authors coming over for the event.
We are very excited to welcome Lord Archer and Christopher Lloyd and are looking forward to their involvement. We are obviously sad to see that Alan Titchmarsh, originally part of the line-up, is unable to attend due to personal matters.
Lord Archer is an international author selling millions of books worldwide, so it will be a great honour to host him and learn about the inspiration behind his latest books. For those who know Jeffrey Archer’s latest series, William Warwick is sure to be a popular character and I, like some of my colleagues in the Library, are definitely hooked on the series.
Christopher Lloyd is no stranger to the Rock and is a firm favourite with our younger audience. Chris will be educating and entertaining the Year 4 pupils on the Schools Day at the John Mackintosh Hall Theatre. Here, he will be focusing on his latest book on climate change called ‘It’s Up to Us’. He will also be holding a further couple of sessions which the public can attend on the Saturday. These will be based on his publications ‘Absolutely Everything’ and the new Children’s Encyclopaedia which takes the form of a fun quiz. I would like to ask your readers not to be intimidated by this and can assure them that it is great fun, with multiple choice answers and Chris acting as the perfect host offering tips and guidance throughout. Not to be missed!
Regarding ‘An Audience With…’ we have offered this platform to authors who have recently published or are in the process of doing so. The sessions are varied and focus on a wide array of topics and subject matter to include history, art, community and culture aimed at stimulating discussion and debate. Furthermore, the authors have been paired with specific interviewers that know the work/research or the writers themselves, promising an interesting conversation.
We are also grateful to the authors who are involved in the School’s programme. They will be visiting the schools to deliver workshops and presentations on their publications, on writing, inspiration etc. This has been met with plenty of enthusiasm, and is sure to be even better received by the pupils themselves. Interviews with some authors based in the UK and others will also air on Radio Gibraltar’s Breakfast Show, every morning at 8:15 am, during Literature week. There will also be written features in the Gibraltar Chronicle by other contributors, with content too on our social media platforms from some of our Library members and contributors. All in all a jam packed week of Literature and all things related.
We are also extremely pleased to be running a Pop-Up Bookshop from the John Mackintosh Hall, Monday – Saturday that week, where we are giving local authors an opportunity to sell their books. Books by Jeffrey Archer and Christopher Lloyd will also be available. We encourage people to visit, browse and purchase, especially as Christmas is round the corner, and books make brilliant gifts.