Saturday, September 18

“We are the most dedicated ‘fandom’ of youth literature in Spain!”

A multitude of young people who speak with “e” (or vary the pronoun), wear colored hair, creative and carefree clothes, crowd at the door of the pavilion that the Madrid Book Fair has given to the followers of the Lit Con Madrid, a youth literature festival. Inside, the room is packed to the brim, and outside, a whirling queue and a nervous tumult peering through the glass door. “The cover! They’re showing the new cover!” The twenty-somethings yell as they compulsively type into the Telegram group they share as fandom of the writers (who work together) Iria G. Parente and Selene M. Pascual.

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The correspondents indoor They tell them that the authors have just released the date of the new book The fury and the labyrinth: November 15. “But if that’s it, noooo, I’ll have to come from London to get the book!” He or she (indistinctly) hugs his girlfriend and they kiss on the mouth as if it were a magnet and a refrigerator. “I saw that there was a Telegram group about the book The flower and death of Iria and Selena. There were 65 people there and one of them was Mar. Speaking of literature we fell in love, “says Laura Rincón, hugging Mar Costa. Costa studies English literature in London and claims to read about six or seven youth books a month and Rincón has been since sixteen (She is now twenty-three) working as a bookseller at the Sanchos Ochoa in Barcelona. “You’ve found the fandom more dedicated as a juvenile in Spain “, everyone laughs. At that moment a boy appears who shouts:” Hello, I’m Michelo, chicaaaas “. And the readers sing their nicks and devirtualizing they get excited. With books in hand (or stuffed in cloth bags) they hug each other and plan that when the talk is over they will move to the lawns to conjecture about the new plot.

For years, the Lit Con Madrid counterprogrammed the Madrid Book Fair from the Fair’s own lawn, since children’s literature had its pavilion and the “greats” pavilion never offered anything for young readers. Alex López is one of the members of the Lit Con, who in a totally altruistic way and for the love of reading programs (now for the official pavilion) talks and youth meetings: “We are a group of friends who like to read and talk when we are young . We started to raise the lawn to meet the authors and exchange with other readers. In 2018 we did a couple of talks for the Fair, and in 2019 everything was officially scheduled although we mounted literary gymkhanas on the sidelines. ”

Celia Merino is also from the Lit Con Madrid entourage: “I am 24 years old and I have read for as long as I can remember. It was my mother who read to me every night until, when I learned to read, I read to her.” Merino started by blending in with what she saw at home, and assures that the Harry Potter saga rowed in favor both for her and for a couple or three generations “up and down.” “La Lit Con we are five very reading friends, but behind us there is a community throughout Spain, who comes for our activities and we met here once”. Merino acknowledges that friendships have been forged on social media. “Some of us have YouTube channels on the genre. My channel has more than 6,400 followers and all the real friends I have today I have gotten through books and networks,” he explains.

Six activities that have fully hung the poster have taken place in the CaixaBank pavilion on Saturday September 11 and Sunday 12. The overwhelming line of people who have not been able to access shows interest in this literature that is increasingly selling more and more. Álex Cerrudo is the commercial director of UDL, one of the most important book distributors. UDL works with more than 300 publishers. “Our number one in sales this year is Hidra, a publisher specializing in youth. It has published the trilogy Shadow and bone, which has carried more than 70,000 copies since January. They are very good numbers because there is still the Christmas campaign, “he explains.

We believe that because a teenager is not interested in ‘The yes of girls’ compulsory in high school, he does not like or is not assiduous in reading, and this is not the case

With a excel With sales data, Cerrudo assures that “the youth is selling more since the youth quota, around 6% or 7%, has grown. This year it would move around 44 million euros sold.” But, he assures that these data are “liquid” because the juvenile label is not completely defined: “There are juvenile books that are like crossover, also for adult audiences, or included in fantasy, so what it sells is not fully reflected. “The author Selene M. Pascual (whom the boys and girls wait nervously at the door) has done her doctoral thesis on youth gender:” And precisely, after years of study, I cannot define for you what it is and what it is not. It is very ambiguous. The teenage characters and the love and high school plots don’t even work. They don’t have to be, or they can be and not be considered a young adult novel. ”

In the booth of the Nocturna publishing house, a considerable queue forms while the writer and art historian Victoria Álvarez signs and talks with her readers. “Our names are Javi, Cristina and Ainhoa. We are waiting for you to sign us, to enter the Fair we have already waited an hour and a half. I especially like the way Victoria sets the scene”, says Javi, and Cristina adds: “There is a lot of documentation for create the stories. I learned so much about Egypt with The voice of Amuet, and another great one about the Napoleonic era whose name I can’t remember because he got about 13 or 14. “They laugh. In their hands they carry three Penelope Quills: The Lost Mermaid. “This is more middle age, from 11 or 12 years old, “explains Javi.” It tells the story of some mermaids in Victorian England. “The three friends in their twenties have Instagram accounts dedicated to books and they don’t buy everything they read” because we would ruin our parents , so we have the library card left. ”

Inside the Nocturna booth, guarding the author, is Irina C. Salabert: “At 18 my stepfather and I created the publishing house, I am 31 and I have done nothing but edit. Now I am fighting with time to to study art history at UNED, the publishing house is getting better and better and I couldn’t study. ” Nocturna has a specific youth line, called Magic Literature, which is the main one and the one that best sells them. Only as a juvenile, they move among the 24 books published a year.

“Juvenile books are read a lot. If we look at the queues of the firms at the Fair, the most massive are those of twenty-somethings. It does not mean that they read more than adults, but it does mean that they read, that they are passionate and they are addicts “. Salabert points out that in Spain youth is disdained because we do not have as much tradition as in Germany or the United Kingdom. “We believe that because a teenager is not interested The yes of the girls compulsory in the institute does not like or is not assiduous to read, and this is not the case. It would be necessary to update the compulsory literature as a minimum, to teach him other possibilities. “The editor Irina C. Salabert considers that if they start reading stories like those of Victoria Álvarez or Iria G. Parente and Selene M. Pascual, it is likely that they will end up reading the classics (The yes of the girls inclusive).

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