Tuesday, August 1, 2017

WITMonth Day 1 | Year four

It's August 1st. It's WITMonth again.

WITMonth is now in its fourth year. It's almost impossible to believe how much this once-small blogging event has expanded, how there are so many readers and translators and booksellers and publishers involved this year who got involved without my having to do anything.

August 1st always marks the date on which I set out some of my goals for the forthcoming month. Not so this year, when that honor will be relegated to the 2nd of the month. Today, I want to talk a little bit about where I see WITMonth going from here. Just a few thoughts.

There is no doubt that WITMonth is its own thing by now. It's no secret that I've had less and less time to blog and organize this year, and I know that I've done significantly less in preparing for WITMonth than I had originally hoped. But I also haven't needed to, not in the same way that I might have in previous years. The Twitter tag has been delightfully active for several days already, with readers gearing up. People have started posting photos up on Instagram. Blog posts are starting to roll out, events are happening in different parts of the world, and... WITMonth is happening. WITMonth is growing by itself.

I love it so much.

This is how I think it should be. Not every reader necessarily devoting all their time to reading women in translation all of August, but enough different readers and reviewers and bloggers and translators and publishers talking about the subject. People learning about the publishing imbalance in translation between men and women. People seeking out new and diverse literature by women writers from around the world. And people doing it not out of any sense of obligation or guilt, but because there are so many good books that this just becomes a month that focuses their reading. This becomes a month with a greater density of recommendations, with more posts, with more attention. Women in translation must exist yearlong, but in August we get to give them that extra platform that they might not always have.

And oh, I love it so much.


  1. I'm with you! I rarely commit myself to challenges because I love the freedom of reading, which means allowing spontaneity and to be influenced by a review, but #WITMonth fits so well with my reading ambitions, because it opens up the world of literature, of the influence of culture and philosophy, through the women's perspective in life and storytelling in a way that isn't possible any other way, we can visit and see people and places but entering into their storytelling universe is a wonderous gift and I'm so pleased, something about that is awakening in the reading world thanks to your initiative and the power of a little hashtag that we can use. Well done and happy reading during August, I can't wait for all the new recommendations.

  2. I agree with Claire! WITMonth is a great way to focus my reading in a way that aligns with books I'd like to be reading - in translation, reading about other cultures, and women writers. It's great, and by no means will I stop reading women in translation after August. Thank you for kickstarting this and your passion for good books! :)


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