India’s Kalachuvadu Publications Named Publisher of the Year in New Delhi

In News by Porter Anderson

The fifth annual Publishing Next Industry Awards program in India has announced its 2018 winners, including the publisher of the year, Kalachuvadu Publications.

Rickshaws in New Delhi. Image – iStockphoto: PandaMatto

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

Kalachuvadu Praised for Tamil Originals and Translations
At a ceremony in New Delhi earlier this month, it was announced that the Tamil publishing house Kalachuvadu Publications is the winner of the Publisher of the Year category in the fifth and latest iteration of the annual Publishing Next Industry Awards.

Based in Nagercoil, Kalachuvadu was one of 11 winners in the overall program with 10 runners-up. In the publishing category, HarperCollins India was named runner-up.

In naming the winner among publishers, the jurors’ rationale was quoted, in part, saying that the recognition was made to Kalavhuvadu “for being a publisher that prioritizes books of the highest quality and tries to reinvent them so as to be relevant to the reader.

“The exchange of ideas with foreign publishers at various forums, the rights sales of their books, and their purchase of rights to translate and publish in Tamil communicates a sense of them working toward a larger vision of publishing.”

Kalachuvadu was established in 1995, and its writers include Ambai, G. Nagarajan, Ashokamitran, Devibharathi, P.A. Krishnan, Perumal Murugan, Salma and Sundara Ramaswamy.

Publishing Next

Established under the aegis of the Publishing Next Conference, which works to build networking and discussion in the publishing industry, the Publishing Next Industry Awards, according to organizers, are meant to recognize innovation and leadership in the Indian book trade. Publishing Next itself is a publisher and author service company created by CinnamonTeal Publishing in Margao.

A jury of some 30 specialists was used to cover the various categories of the award–which range from Illustrator and Editor of the Year to Book Cover of the Year (in both English and Indian languages), Children’s Book of the Year, and Bookstore of the Year.

According to one of the program’s founders, Leonard J. Fernandes, the Awards presentation until this month has been held each year in Goa during the annual Publishing Next Conference, but was moved this year to Delhi’s India International Centre to coincide with the ongoing New Delhi World Book Fair, which draws publishers from all over India.

In book retail, Mumbai’s Trilogy Bookstore and Library was named Bookstore of the Year, while Walking Bookfairs in Bhubaneswar was selected as the bookstore runner-up.

Editor of the Year went to Premanka Goswami of Penguin Random House India “for being able to work very closely with other departments within the publishing house, and to see the potential of each book project, and develop it in different ways to maximise that potential, as also for the eclectic and diverse list he has built.”

The awards event included a panel discussion, rather charmingly titled, “Truth and Morality: What’s Publishing Got To Do With It?” Speaking to the issue were Vivek Mehra, Karthika VK, Raman Shreshta, owner of the Gangtok-based Rachna Bookstore; and Rihan Najib, books editor at the Hindu Business Line’s magazine, Blink.

The moderator for the session was Arpita Das, the publisher of Yoda Press and a prominent member of the international publishing industry. Publishing Perspectives may remember our interview with her about the challenges faced by women leaders in the publishing market of India today.

The event in Delhi was attended by industry professionals publishers including Karthika VK, the publisher of Amazon Westland; Mehra, CEO of SAGE India; and Sesh Sheshadri, CEO of Overleaf among others.

2018 Publishing Next Industry Awards
Category Winner Runner-Up
Bookstore of the Year Trilogy Bookstore and Library, Mumbai Walking Bookfairs, Bhubaneswar
Editor of the Year Premanka Goswami (Penguin Random House India) Aienla Ozukum (Aleph Book Company)
Illustrator of the Year Sonali Zohra Rajiv Eipe
Book Cover of the Year (Indian Languages) M. Rohini for her design of the cover of Peruvali, published by Kalachavadu Publications. Saurabh Garge for his design of the cover of Do Log, published by HarperCollins India.
Book Cover of the Year (English) Pooja Saxena for her design of the cover of Centrepiece, published by Zubaan Haitenlo Semy, for his design of the cover of Jadoowallahs, Jugglers and Jinns: A Magical History of India, published by Pan Macmillan India
Illustrated Book of the Year The Konyaks: Last of the Tattooed Headhunters, published by Roli Books Vivan Sundaram: History Project, published by Tulika Books, Delhi
Children’s Book of the Year Jointly presented to A Book for Puchku, published by Pratham Books and to Salim Mamoo and Me, published by Tulika Publishers, Chennai Dance of the Wild published by Pickle Yolk Books
Printed Book of the Year (Indian Languages) Janamaru Marana, published by Dhauli Books Avasthantarachya Kavita, published by Copper Coin Publishing
Printed Book of the Year (English) Sair-ul-Manazil, published by Tulika Books, Delhi Remnants of a Separation: A History of the Partition through Material Memory, published by HarperCollins Publishers India Ltd
Publisher of the Year Kalachuvadu Publications Pvt Ltd HarperCollins Publishers India Ltd

The Children’s Book of the Year award for A Book for Puchku from Pratham Books was cited as being chosen for “taking something so subtle and unnoticed such as librarians who also read, and making a book of it without pushing a political or social or moral agenda to stake a claim for its creation. The book makes a compelling case for reading.”

More from Publishing Perspectives on India is here, and more on awards in publishing is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.