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Frankfurt Book Fair 1992
ASR participated in the Frankfurt Bookfair in September – October 1992 in which it made a number of contacts and negotiations with other publishers. For instance, the European language rights for “Voices Within” for one year have been sold to a Spanish publishing house while Zed Press has bought the rights for “Finding Our Way” and Feminist Press has bought “The Heart Divided”. ASR has also bought the rights to Fatima Mernissi’s “Women heads of States” and Nawal el Sadaawi’s “Women at Point Zero” on which we worked and have out the book by early 1993.
Lahore Book Fair 1993
8th Lahore Bookfair 1993 was organized by the Pakistan Publishers & Book Sellers Association (Import Group) from 2nd to 11th December 1993 at Al-Hamra Art Gallery, Lahore.
The bookfair was inaugurated by Ms. Shahnaz Wazir Ali, special assistant to Prime Minister of Pakistan. ASR presented a set of English books for her and explained that ASR is the only Feminist publisher in Pakistan and that we have published 43 titles on women’s issues and also many books are in process. We requested her that she recommend ASR’s books to the National Book Council of Pakistan. (This book council have a very wide outreach through out Pakistan and it purchases 400 copies of each title published in Pakistan). She has promised to do so. We assure that we will remind her when we will publish a new book.
ASR hired & set up the Bookfair a stall and displayed ASR publications. People from different walks of life visited the Bookfair. We did not get a very good response in terms of sale of books but did receive a good response from the public at large. They appreciated ASR books. Mostly women said that they were very glad to see a Feminist Press in Lahore. At the same time, we established good business relationships with book sellers, distributors and the representatives of the libraries. In this respect they have promised to place orders on our next publications.
It is hoped that they will abide by the words in future and we will be able to find a reasonable good marketing network within Lahore which will not only improve our sales but will also reduce the cost of marketing expenses.
From this bookfair where we have succeeded in developing contacts with the distributors also have gained considerable experience in sale of books and collected valuable opinion/suggestions from the visitors and from our counter-parts. We have sold the books and placed orders.
12 World Bookfair, 3 – 11 February 1996, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi India
The largest bookfair in Asia and Africa, the New Delhi World Book Fair provides an opening into the vast Indian book market. The National Book Trust, an organization of the Government of India, established to promote books and the habit of reading, invited the organizations to participate in the 12th New Delhi World Book Fair. Spread over more than 25,000 sqm. covered area of the New Delhi’s beautiful exhibition ground, Pragati Maidan, the World Book Fair also gives us an opportunity to explore the greatness of Ancient India, the romance of the medieval times, and the potential of the country in the pleasant weather of February when the sun is out and the flowers are in full bloom.
ASR arranged its books stall in the Pakistani section. ASR’s stall was very different from other stalls. Decorated with its creative posters, postcards and its publications on women’s issues, movement and their perspective regarding social development in Pakistan. The stall was presenting the ASR ideology struggle for women’s rights as human rights. In addition to this ASR’s publication included books on women’s issue like women’s studies, media and Islam. ASR distributed its Institute brochure and new printed catalogues for the year 1996 – 97.
ASR’s stall was visited by thousands of people in 98 days. People who visited included publishers, whole sellers and retailers from the International level mostly from the South Asian countries. Other than these, the stall was visited by Ambassadors, Diplomates, Door Agencies, Parliamentarians and Foreign Delegates from different parts of the World. Apart from these NGOs workers, women and students of Universities from the all over the India including Kashmir came to the bookfair.
Many of visitors and book lovers appreciated ASR’s work on the women’s literature in Pakistan. They found these books very useful for the readers of developmental issues in South Asia. A large number of visitors commented that these books played a role in influencing changes in the ideology of the policymakers for development in this region. Furthermore, people from the book trade and Intellectuals appreciated the production of ASR’s books in terms of covers, paper, formatting, binding, printing and font selection.
The bookfair gave us an opportunity to promote our books at International level. This event helped ASR in establishing and furthering our relations with International publishers, Intellectuals, Authors, Thinkers, Librarians and other book lovers including students. In addition to this ASR got a chance to introduce SAARC countries Women’s literature and activism in Pakistan.
ASR representatives have learnt a lot about publishing and marketing from different conferences, seminars and lectures, which were organized in connection with the Bookfair and delegations of publishers from the whole of the World.