The London Book Fair announces Sun-Mi Hwang as Market Focus Author of the Day

NEWS FOR RELEASE, FRANKFURT, 11 October 2013: The London Book Fair (LBF) is delighted to announce international bestselling and award-winning author Sun-mi Hwang as Market Focus Author of the Day on Wednesday 9 April, in honour of Korea as The London Book Fair’s Market Focus 2014. The Author of the Day programme showcases one author across each of the three days of the Fair, through a programme including events, book signings, photo calls and meetings with international publishing contacts.

Sun-mi Hwang made her debut in 1995, and has published more than forty books enjoyed by adults and children alike. Upon its publication in 2000, her novel The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly became an instant classic and no.1 bestseller in Korea, remaining on the bestseller list there for ten years, selling over a million copies. This critically acclaimed novel was produced into a comic book, play, and musical, and has been translated into eighteen languages and has sold over 2 million copies worldwide to date. In 2011, an animated film based on the story became the highest grossing animated film in Korean history. The film adaptation, with English subtitles, has been sold in ten language territories around the world, and will be released in the UK and US in the Spring 2014. The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly is being published as Sun-mi Hwang’s world English language debut this November by Viking Penguin.

Sun-mi Hwang said: “I’m honoured to be invited to The London Book Fair. This is a surprising and exciting time in my life. Sometimes it is hard to believe that this is my life, and the news that I will be standing in the middle of The London Book Fair is even more difficult to believe. I feel as if I am standing behind a closed door; I’m afraid of what may be on the other side, and my heart is leaping. I’m sure this will be an unforgettable experience!”

Amy Webster, International and Market Focus Manager, The London Book Fair, said: “The Market Focus puts Korean writing in the spotlight, and the Author of the Day programme is one of the key strands of the Fair, so our Market Focus Author of the Day nicely links together two different sections of the Fair. We are very excited that Sun-mi Hwang joins the list of esteemed writers who have taken part in the Author of the Day programme, and we are very much looking forward to hearing Ms Hwang talk about her work.”

Cortina Butler, Director Literature, British Council, said: “The London Book Fair Market Focus Cultural Programme will bring authors to the UK who reflect the richness and diversity of the best of contemporary Korean literature. We are delighted that the award-winning author Sun-mi Hwang has agreed to appear as Author of the Day.”

In 1995, Sun-mi Hwang received the Children’s Literature New Writer Award with her short story, Marble, Marble, and the Nongmin Literary Award with her novella, A Flower to Plant in Your Heart. In 1997, she was awarded the 1st Tamra Literary Award in the children’s book category, and in 2003, the Sejung Children’s Literary Award with Capture the Orchard. An award for The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly for Best Book of the Year in Poland followed in 2012, published by Kwaity Orientu.

Sun-mi Hwang appears as Market Focus Author of the Day as part of the much wider Market Focus Cultural programme supported by the British Council and the Literature Translation Institute of Korea. The 2014 Market Focus will put Korea in the spotlight and offer the Korean industry a chance to promote its content, technology, authors and culture to a broad audience of international publishing professionals, during the three days of the Fair.

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Further author information
Born in 1963, Sun-mi Hwang was unable to attend middle school due to poverty, but thanks to a teacher who gave her a key to a classroom, she could go to the school and read books whenever she wanted. She enrolled in high school by taking a certificate examination, and she graduated from the creative writing departments at Seoul Institute of the Arts and Gwangju University, and from the graduate school of Chung-ang University. She lives in Seoul, South Korea.

Praise for The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly: “This simply told but absorbing fable…explores the joys of parenthood and the sacrifices required to nurture the next generation, the healing bonds of friendship, and the tug-of-war between nature and nurture. Spare but evocative line drawings…add to the subtle charm.”
Publishers Weekly

For further information, or to arrange an interview with Sun-mi Hwang, please contact Tracey Jennings, Midas PR Tel: 020 7361 7860, email:  

Tuesday 8 -Thursday 10 April 2014

Notes to editors:
The London Book Fair is the global marketplace for rights negotiation and the sale and distribution of content across print, audio, TV, film and digital channels. Taking place every spring in the world’s premier publishing and cultural capital, it is a unique opportunity to explore, understand and capitalise on the innovations shaping the publishing world of the future. The London Book Fair brings you direct access to customers, content and emerging markets. The London Book Fair 2014, the 43rd Fair, will take place from Tuesday 8-Thursday 10 April 2014, Earls Court, London. The London Book Fair’s Digital Minds Conference will take place the day before LBF opens, on Monday 7 April. Korea is Market Focus country in 2014, following Turkey in 2013. For further information, please visit:  

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