Times LitFest returns with online carnival

Bibliophiles are logged in from 27 August to 17 October

Times LitFest
Times LiFest sessions on 18 September. Photo Times LitFest

The digital chapter of the Times Literature Festival, popularly known as Times LitFest, is already on, on-line. It began on 27 August and will continue 17 October 2021. Bibliophiles and literary enthusiasts are taking advantage in the ongoing cultural extravaganza that features engaging interviews and panel discussions with both debutante and celebrated authors from across the globe.

The two-month long literary carnival features close to 70 virtual episodes and 20 interactive workshops with sessions every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. More than 100 authors are participating in the literature festival. The fifteen international chart-topping authors including 2020 Booker Prize winner Douglas Stuart, Jeffery Archer, Beth Reekles, Prof Jonathan De Quick, Guy Raz, Kjell Ola Dhal, Tom Holland, Kevin Barry, Sinead Gleeson, Tiffany Tavernier, Rutger Bregman, John Zubrzycki, and Shannon Lee.

Indian biggies at the literary fest include Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, Ravinder Singh, Amish Tripathi, Salman Rushdie, Devdutt Pattanaik, Shobhaa De, Ira Mukhoty, Anita Nair, Shashi Tharoor, Chetan Bhagat, Gaur Gopal Das, and Anand Neelakantan, among others.

Cinema driven by literature

The literary festival will witness huge participation from the Bollywood brigade with beauty queen and actor Priyanka Chopra talking about her memoir ‘Unfinished,’ and Anupam Kher recounting his journey during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic which resulted in his recently released book ‘Your Best Day Is Today!’

Screen adaptations of best-selling novels are the growing trend in the Indian cinema with its film industries spread across centers in the country such as Tollywood, Bollywood, and several other linguistic regions and states. The Times LitFest will also feature a panel discussion with Piyush Jha, Ridhi Dogra and Ekta Kapoor in conversation with Manju Kapoor on the transformation of a literary piece into a moving motion picture.

Book launches, readings and specifically designed workshops will be other attractions at the digital literature meet. The virtual edition of the Times LitFest is all set to transform the way readers engage with literary works and creators.

Register yourself for the event here and keep yourself updated on what’s happening in the Indian literary sphere and cultural space.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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