Cover Stories: Frankfurt Book Fair; multi-millionaire's poetry; writer in residence award

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The Independent Culture

The Frankfurt Book Fair opens on Wednesday.

The Frankfurt Book Fair opens on Wednesday. Still, despite modern technology, the hub of the publishing year, it offers what Americans call "face time" to renew old contacts and perhaps persuade them, over a long supper, to pay over the odds for some project. This year, there are close to 7,000 exhibitors with about 900, the largest contingent, from the UK. The Arab countries are guests of honour, and more than 200 Arab writers, artists and intellectuals will visit Frankfurt for discussions - and, it is hoped, business with Western colleagues.

* Felix Dennis, the multi-millionaire publisher whose career had its roots in Oz magazine, is once more about to sally forth as a poet. His Glass Half Full tour of 2002 drew crowds, in part at least to drink his fine wine. Next month comes a new collection from Hutchinson, Lone Wolf, and again the poet-publisher will be plying his listeners with free wine from his cellars. He's 65th on the Sunday Times Rich List, so there's no need to be abstemious. The tour kicks off on 11 October at London's In and Out Club and ends there on 7 November for a fundraiser.

* The Hosking Houses Trust is seeking to appoint its second writer in residence. First awarded to Jessica Berens, this is a precious gift of time and space for published women authors aged 40 or over. The holder will spend a year writing "interesting or innovative work on any subject" in a fully-equipped, rent- and bill-free cottage near Stratford-upon-Avon. A small bursary is supplied as well. The closing date is 16 October; for details, call 01789 262924 or go to www.hoskinghouses.co.uk

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