Six French translations of Flemish graphic novels
This spring has seen the publication of no fewer than six French translations of Flemish graphic novels, half of which were debuts. Flanders Literature supported five of these titles with a grant for illustrated books; no grant application was made for the sixth.
In 2018, Flanders Literature and the Dutch Foundation for Literature are focusing on the French market: a large number of authors who write in Dutch and have been translated into French will be attending major festivals in France and the French-speaking part of Belgium. We have plenty of great comic books and graphic novels to show!
Recently published in French
- Outburst (Woekeraar) by Pieter Coudyzer, translated by Laurent Bayer;
- El Mesías by Wauter Mannaert and Mark Bellido (Vide Cocagne), translated by Dominic De Clercq;
- Forty-four Years Later (Vierenveertig na Ronny) by Michaël Olbrechts (Glénat), translated by Monique Nagielkopf;
- The Miracle of Vierves (Het mirakel van Vierves) by Inne Haine (VRAOUM), translated by Daniel Cunin;
- Papa Zoglu by Simon Spruyt (Même Pas Mal), translated by Laurent Bayer;
- Higher than the Mountains and Deeper than the Sea (Hoger dan de bergen en dieper dan de zee) by Laura Janssens and Laïla Koubaa (Steinkis), translated by Laïla Koubaa.
Since 2007, Flanders Literature has supported over 100 translations of Flemish graphic novels into more than 15 languages. French translations form a bridge to the rest of the world. So, over the past decade, Flanders Literature has ensured a high profile for our Flemish authors at the comics festival in Angoulême, France, the annual meeting place for French and international comics publishers, writers and others. Every year, our grants manager for graphic novels has around forty meetings with international publishers at the rights centre, where she promotes titles by Flemish comic-book creators. This policy of active and visible promotion is paying off.
It is interesting to note that half of the recent French translations of comic books have been debuts (‘Outburst’, ‘The Miracle of Vierves’ and ‘Higher than the Mountains and Deeper than the Sea’). Most Flemish comic-book writers with more than one published title have already found ‘their’ French publisher. At Flanders Literature, we have noticed that French publishers who do not yet have any Flemish comic-book creators on their lists are extremely keen to take a look at debuts from Flanders. This reflects the reputation of Flemish makers of comics in France and the rest of the world: they guarantee artistic, high-quality, world-class graphic novels.