United We Stand - Lessons from the Women's Fiction Festival in Matera
Unity and connection between authors has been widely discussed over the past few weeks. This is mainly the result of the much too commented Amazon vs Hachette dispute, which is rekindling the opposition between some traditionally published authors and the indie community.
This is why I was particularly looking forward to the panel on the last day of the conference called “United we stand”. Four American indie authors were present: Bella André, Tina Folsom, Debra Holland and Shelley Adina (who is also Bella’s copy editor) along with the representatives of a new European association, the EWWA.
About the Women’s Fiction Festival
But before I get there, let’s talk a bit about the festival itself. It is organized essentially by three incredibly energetic women: Elizabeth Jennings (author and translator, and a member of the ALLi), Maria Paola Romeo and Mariateresa Cascino. It has been taking place every year for the past 11 years in the magical city of Matera (I spent most of my spare time taking pictures.
The choice of the city, which might be surprising for a truly international conference, isn’t a coincidence. Matera is currently running for the “2019 cultural capital of Europe” title, and thus supports and sponsors a lot of cultural events and conferences. Moreover, it is a city laden with history. It underwent an exceptional change over the past 50 years, and is now living in a mix of traditionalism and modernism. Much like the publishing industry…