Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Some Scenes From Kolumpo Kita Punya!

These days I let pictures do the blogging, so here's a bunch of them during the KL Writers and Readers Festival on 18 October, a.k.a. "Kolumpo Kita Punya (Kuala Lumpur Is Ours)!"

Publications for sale at the Merpati Jingga booth; one of the few I could
note, thanks to Raja Azmi's novel Karkuma

Many of the usual suspects (those I've heard of) have set up booths at Dataran Undrgrnd, a cool spot with lots of shoplots and even a fountain underneath the historic Dataran Merdeka.

At left: Liew Seng Tat (I believe), manning the booth for Arif and Zan; and
who I think is the blogger/poet who mysteriously calls herself GDSJHT

Merpati Jingga, Selut Press, Lejen Press, Dubook Press, Sang Freud Press, Terfaktab, Fixi (of course) and many others were present at the one-day event.

It's been almost two weeks since then, so I'm having trouble remembering what most of the photos were about. Maybe each booth should've sported bigger banners or something. So much to take in, so little room in my head - and not enough stamina to last till the evening.

The atmosphere was lively - and got livelier towards the afternoon. When I walked in a book discussion was taking place between the moderator and the guests: Zan Azlee and Arif Rafhan Othman (Adventures of a KL-ite in Afghanistan) and Azlinariah Abdullah (Air Mata Kesengsaraan Rohingya (The Rohingyas' Tears of Anguish)).

From left: Arif, Zan and Azlinariah share stuff about their books with
the audience

Business at many booths seemed brisk. Events like this, featuring local indie publishers, are more common than people think. The industry is vibrant - maybe it's just that they're not coming up with what certain observers of the industry like to read.

Myself, I've a pile of unread books and I'm already a little bibliophobic from the reading I do at work. Money's a bit tight. And I didn't go in to 'cover' the event. I used to enjoy things like this - really enjoy - until I got into publishing.

A separate area held a KL Zine Fest for - what else? - zines. A poetry
performance session took place there, and the performers were so ...
spirited I thought a fight had broken out

Still, I feel heartened by what I saw that day.

All these people, all these books, all the voices and creativity ... it's vibrant, loud and alive.

It's all good.


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