The BolognaBooksPlus program, which was inaugurated last year as a way to incorporate more general trade education into the fair, is offering four days of programming, including a focus on training for aspiring literary agents, as well as offer information on self-publishing, literary translation, and book covers. Michèle Roberts will serve as the first Author Ambassador for BolognaBookPlus.

BBP began March 20 with a program titled “How to Sell Rights and Understand Licensing in Children’s Books,” which attracted a full room of some 35 attendees for a session with Debbie Bibo of the Debbie Bibo Agency and several others, in a program geared toward those starting out in rights, contracts, and licensing in children’s publishing. This was followed yesterday with a day of insights looking at “How to Self-Publish in Italy and Abroad," which drew nearly fifty people. Today March 22, a new session, “Call Your Agent: How to Become a Successful Literary Agent,” will offer training for aspiring literary agents, as well as advice and guidance for those getting started in the profession.

The BBP program includes a new title showcase of self-published titles that is a joint program between Bologna and the American Collective Stand, as well as booths from a wide variety organizations and literary agents, such as the Kalem Agency from Istanbul and publishers, such as Textofilia Ediciones from Mexico.

“The program reflects the ingenuity, creativity, and ambition of our industry across the globe, whilst introducing events and conferences that support the industry of tomorrow,” says Jacks Thomas, guest director for BBP, who noted it is also timely, pointing to today's announcement that the Federation of European Publishers is spearheading a fundraising project to support Ukrainian publishers.

"We are so excited to be back in business," said Thomas. "We set modest expectations for the program and these have have already been surpassed."