Black Hole – Books meet Rights 19.-20.2.2021

Black Hole – Books meet Rights is a new international literature event focusing on translating and foreign rights. The event will introduce Finnish authors and books to international literature professionals such as translators, literary agents and publishers. The target of the event is to increase the Finnish literature export globally.

The target group of the first Black Hole is Nordic literature professionals, but everyone can participate. The event will be held virtually.

The first day´s program is a seminar with presentations and discussions about exporting Finnish literature to the Nordic countries and elsewhere, the characteristics of translating Finnish literature and what makes Finnish literature interesting and original.

On the second day participants can discuss privately, for example about trading books.

The participation is free, but registration is requested. The more detailed instructions for the registration will be published in February 2021. The event is organized by Oulu Writers Association. The primary funders are The City of Oulu and The Ministry of Education and Culture, Finland.

Friday 19
th February

UTC/GMT +2 hours


12:00 Black Hole – Welcome

Chairman Antti Leikas, Oulu Writers Association [FIN]

12:15 Finland is still cool – A survey of Finnish literature export

International Projects Manager Päivi Haarala, FILI – Finnish Literature Exchange [FIN]

12:30 Nordic Literature or Nordic Literatures? A literary scholar’s take on the field and
Finland’s place in it

Ph.D., post-doctoral researcher Julia Tidigs, The Society of Swedish Literature in Finland
(SLS) & University of Helsinki [FIN]


Host: Antti Leikas

13:00 What makes Finnish literature interesting abroad?

Literary Agent, CEO, Urpu Strellman, Helsinki Literary Agency [FIN]

13:45 A Swedish agent’s view on the Finnish book market: what type of titles/projects work, what type of titles/projects require more effort

Agent Signe Lundgren, Nordin Agency [SWE]

14:30 Literary Export – A Publisher’s View

Publisher Anna-Riikka Carlson, WSOY / Finnish fiction [FIN]


Host: Katja Törmänen

13:00 The Finnishing Touch – a translator’s view on translating Finnish literature

Translator Birgita Bonde Hansen [DK]

13:45 What is the status of literature in the Nordic countries?

Henrika Ringbom, Finland-Swedish poet from Helsinki, member of the Jury for the Nordic Council Literature Prize [FIN]

14:30 Literary Translator – the Best Friend You Can Get

Laura Jänisniemi, literary translator of 25 years and 130+ titles [FIN]


15:30 The uniqueness of the Finnish literature written in Swedish. What is it like to be a minority author in Finland?

Peter Sandström is a Finnish prosaist, writing in Swedish. [FIN]

16:00 How does one’s book translate into Nordic languages?

Author Kati Hiekkapelto. [FIN]

16:30 Closing discussion

17:00 Seminar wrap-up

19:00 Virtual club

Casual conversation.

Saturday 20
th February

12:00-15:00 Private meetings