Deborah Smith is a UK-based translator of Korean literature, including Han Kang's The Vegetarian, for which they won the 2016 Man Booker International Prize. She is active in promoting translation in the UK and internationally, through teaching, mentoring, prize judging, guest editing, reviewing, public speaking, and consultancy. Deborah is also publisher at Tilted Axis, the nonprofit press she founded to shake up the canon of contemporary world literature in English, with translations from Bengali, Thai, Uzbek, Korean, Japanese, Turkish, and more.
Summary of work
Through Tilted Axis Press, I publish cult, contemporary literature from all over Asia, translated from an ever-growing range of languages which currently includes Turkish, Uzbek, Bengali, Nepali, Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Thai. Our books are widely distributed and reviewed in the UK, and we also sell foreign rights for many of our authors.
Summary of work to develop
We are looking to build ties and collaborate with international organisations who focus on developing writers, translators, and audiences, for a mix of: scouting authors, buying & selling foreign rights, sourcing funding, potential co-publishing / co-distribution in foreign territories, organising international events. Of especial interest are: partnerships that will enable us to continuously publish high-quality translations even from those languages which currently lack government support for translation; digital book distribution throughout Asia; encouraging translation of our books between Asian languages, for which we can potentially waive rights costs.