The world's two largest book prizes -- the Nobel Prize for Literature and the Spanish Premio Planeta -- as well as one of the most esteemed for English-language, the Man Booker Prize -- and the Frankfurt Book Fair, the premier publishing event worldwide, make October an especially interesting month for fans of the written word. (Updates Nobel Prize for Literature information)
Man Booker Prize
London, England - Guildhall
The Man Booker Prize, one of the English-speaking world's most important literary prizes, will be awarded October 6. This is the 41st edition of the award, which selects the best novel written by a citizen of the British Commonwealth, Ireland or Zimbabwe. The winner will will be announced in a ceremony at London's Guildhall and receives £50,000 (€55,000) along with an increased international profile.
Feria de Madrid International Book Fair
Madrid, Spain - IFEMA Convention Center
The 27th edition of Feria de Madrid International Book Fair, one of the premier Spanish-language book fairs, will run from October 7 through October 9 at the IFEMA center in Madrid. In addition to being an important trade forum, featuring over 700 exhibitors from 16 countries, visitors will be able to discover the latest trends and new features on the market through roundtables, presentations, prizes and book launches from popular authors. Russia is the guest of honor this year. More than 15,000 visitors are expected at this year's edition.
Ubud Writers & Readers Festival
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
The sixth edition of the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival is slated to run on the Indonesian island of Bali from October 7 through October 11 under the theme "Compassion and Solidarity." Panel discussions, writing and cultural workshops, book launches and readings will be held at multiple locations around Ubud, including Borobudur, one of the world's largest Buddhist monuments and Indonesia's most visited tourist attraction. Nearly 80 Indonesian and international writers, journalists, activists and personalities, such as Africa's first Nobel prize winner for literature Wole Soyinka, will be present.
Prémio Leya Prize
This award goes to the top Portuguese-langauge novel in the world and has a purse of €100,000. 2008 was the first year of the award, which was given to Brazilian journalist and author Murilo Antônio de Carvalho. Leya is an international book company based in Portugal which established this award to support Portuguese-language authors.
Frankfurt Book Fair
Frankfurt Exhibition Center
The world's largest book fair, based on number of exhibitors, will run from October 14 through October 17. Nearly 7,000 exhibitors from 100 countries and 300,000 visitors are expected this year. Frankfurt will offer over 2,900 events, organized by publishers, cultural organizations and other various institutions. The biggest draw will likely continue to revolve around authors and personalities, such as Canadian novelist Margaret Atwood, Swedish crime-writer Håkan Nesser, and Australian singer, author and screenwriter, Nick Cave. Two important literary prizes will be awarded during the book fair: The German Book Prize and the Peace Prize of The German Book Trade.
Premio Planeta Prize
The Premio Planeta Prize novel is the second-largest book prize in the world, after the Nobel Prize for Literature, with a purse of €600,000 awarded to the winner. The honorarium bequeathed the runner-up, €150,000, is also a generous purse. The award was created in 1952 to recognize underappreciated Spanish-language novels.
Nobel Prize for Literature
The enormous purse for the Nobel Prize for Literature, 10 million Swedish kroner (€980,000), reflects its preeminent status in the book world. Frontrunners this year include Israeli author Amos Oz, Algerian-born poet Assia Djebar, American musician Bob Dylan and a host of others.
Istanbul Book Fair
October 31 - November 8
Beylikdüzü Fair and Convention Center
The 28th Istanbul Book Fair has a theme of "Translation in Intercultural Dialogue" and will inaugurate an international hall in this exhibition dedicated to promoting Turkish literature across the world. The fair will be attended by 550 exhibitors representing 30 countries and more than 300,000 visitors. Publishers, copyright and writers' agencies, cultural organizations, national stands representing foreign publishers, a translation center and a forum for interviews with writers are all included in this year's program.