The population of Berdsk is a little more than 100 thousand people, and every newborn here, without leaving the maternity hospital, receives a literary inoculation – the city administration gives mother and baby a set of three books under the general title “My sun”: the book “Mother’s Song” contains lullabies, the second – “It’s warm in the sun, and good in the mother” – poems and nursery rhymes for children, and the third – “Caring Mom” – tips for new parents.
It is not surprising that meetings, lectures and master classes in the House of Culture “Rodina” are exhausted here: not only Berdsk residents come to communicate with the best and most relevant writers of our time and buy books for them and her children, book lovers come from Novosibirsk, Akademgorodok and even from Barnaul, which is three hours away.
Photo: Evgeny Kurskov
And how not to go if the “Russian Stephen King” Yana Wagner is reading an excerpt from the new novel “The Tunnel” for the first time, and the poet Tatyana Stoyanova is organizing the premiere of the collection of poems “Body Contour” – the book is still warm, paint barely dry, straight from the printer to Siberia.
Yana Wagner’s new book (this is based on her book “Vongozero”, the series “Epidemic” was filmed) is a disaster novel. “I love torturing people in my books,” Wagner admits. “In The Tunnel, I tried to show a small post-Soviet society, to say what a person is capable of when they are afraid of flying.”
The guests tensely listen to an excerpt from the book, and it is even surprising that Yana does not have to read the second and third chapters, the temptation to know what comes next is great.
“No, that’s impossible, we’ve already been on our feet for half an hour,” Sasha said tensely.
Mitya opened her eyes. Her cork didn’t actually move a single step. The congestion was unbearable. My head hurt even more.
“Maybe we should go outside and see what’s in there,” Asya asked. – Wow, everyone’s out.
In fact, there were more people outside, tired of sitting in cars for too long, people now wandering between the rows, talking quietly. From time to time someone would put their hand to their forehead, crane their neck and look straight ahead, as if really hoping to find out what the problem was, to determine the cause of the jam…”
The “round table” on the topic “Modern women’s prose. Peculiarities” brought together the most fashionable young women writers today: Vera Bogdanova, Ekaterina Manoilo, Asya Volodina and Ksenia Burzhskaya. They wanted to discuss the term “women’s prose”, which is used mainly in a negative way, denoting light and easy prose, dime novels, simple detective stories, etc. But there was no heated discussion, as the girls stood in solidarity with each other: to hell with this term, it only hinders the development of good prose! Books written by women are not inferior to those in which the author is a man, and there can be no contemptuous attitude here. Don’t you think? Read “Pavel Zhang” by Vera Bogdanova, “Father looks to the West” by Ekaterina Manoilo, “Protagonist” by Asya Volodina and “Manner of Communication” by Xenia Burzhskaya.
And the festival “Siberian Atlantis” is clear proof of this. This year, the guests of the literary festival are completely representatives of the fair sex.
While the girls were agreeing on the discussion, in a nearby conference room, the poet, writer, co-author of the lyrics of the Melnitsa group Olga Lishina, as well as the writer, teacher of Russian language and literature Elena Boroda and critic Evgenia Shaffert spoke about important issues in adolescent literature. What is especially exciting for young readers right now? For example, choosing a profession. To understand that you are not alone, everyone is faced with this, one of Elena Boroda’s stories from the book “Zoom. Quarantine story” will help. And Olga Lishina is sure that literature for adolescents should not be only about difficulties and problems, but also about happiness and love – that is exactly what her book “Shine!” is about.
“Siberian Atlantis” -2023 – went with the flow noisily and merrily, but did not sink at all. The festival was noted for the serious interest of young people in books. Perhaps the program of the next literary festival in Berdsk will focus even more on this audience. This is how we make the reader grow.
“Siberian Atlantis turned out to be brilliant, interesting and even elegant to some extent, convincing the most vehement skeptics of its necessity. It was good in Berdsk, it will be even better in Berdsk,” Mikhail Faustov, program director of the festival. , It is safe. And you can trust him, because it is he who gives literary holidays to the inhabitants of different parts of our country. The next one is already in the summer in Arkhangelsk – “White June”, from June 23 to 25. Write down these dates so you can plan your vacation the right way.
Photo: Evgeny Kurskov