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From HUIA Publishers:

Earlier this month, director of HUIA Pania Tahau-Hodges travelled to Italy to promote our books at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. She went with a clear focus to meet like-minded publishers with aligned values. At the fair, we tapped into the great appetite that exists for Indigenous storytelling and the growing network of Indigenous publishers.

The international interest in our authors and books has been steadily increasing over the last few years. We are pleased to see the success of The Bomb by Sacha Cotter and Josh Morgan continue in the United States as The Cannonball published by Sourcebooks. Relationships like this give impetus to go to Bologna, knowing we are building on existing relationships as well as forging new ones.

It was also valuable to connect face-to-face with people who we have built relationships with online. Pania spent time with Whiti Hereaka’s literary agent, Jessica Craig, whom we have engaged to build on the international interest generated for Kurangaituku from both the Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction and the longlist for the Dublin Literary Award.

While our focus internationally is to sell rights and support the aspirations of our authors, there are also key spaces HUIA is well-positioned to contribute to. Being at Bologna has re-ignited our motivation to build transformative relationships with other Indigenous businesses and strengthen the sovereignty of Indigenous publishing across the globe. We know the potential for storytelling grows exponentially when Indigenous peoples have equal opportunity to lead and direct in the publishing landscape.

The international market is an exciting and dynamic space that we are proud to be a part of. Introducing our storytellers to eager audiences overseas is a valuable and uplifting experience, and we give our thanks to PANZ and Creative NZ for supporting this campaign to Bologna.

Photo credit: HUIA Publishers