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This region has its fair share of book fairs.The sixth edition of EAFL, which runs March 4-8 in Dubai, aims to assemble some 100 international authors and close to 60 U.A.E-based writers for talks, workshops, panels, readings and discussions centered on the theme of metamorphosis. Eight Lebanese writers are also scheduled to make appearances.Authors are invited based on several criteria, Yvette Judge, the festival's acting director, explained. This year's Lebanese contingent includes psychologist Anita Papas, author of self-help books on positive thinking; TV chef and cookbook author Arlette Boutros, journalist and founder of the Samir Kassir Foundation Gisele Khoury; Dubai-based authors Hani Soubra and Rewa Zeinati; and three children's authors, Sahar Naja Mahfouz, Samar Mahfouz Barraj and Nadine Touma.The Lebanese authors scheduled to take part all agreed that EAFL was a good place to make connections and raise their public profiles.Publishing exclusively in Arabic, Touma stressed the importance of festivals in engaging Arab audiences.For authors like Papas who write in English, the Gulf market can dictate whether or not the book merits an Arabic translation.
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