Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mérida will be holding its annual FILEY book fair online from April 23 to May 2.
The event will bring authors, educators, and readers together with workshops, lectures, and activities designed for children.
“It is our hope that all of those who have enjoyed the FILEY in the past will attend virtually this year. We have some very exciting events lined up,” said the event organizer, Enrique Martín Briceño.
This year’s activities will be centered around the promotion of literature and poetry in the Mayan language, as well as an emphasis on encouraging people in Yucatán to read more books.
“People in Yucatán read quite a bit, but most people limit themselves to newspapers and magazines. They don’t always make the jump to books, which is a shame and something we want to help remedy,” said Martín Briceño.
Organizers say that they are expecting a high turnout for the event. However, it is yet to be seen if people will “show up” online without what many considered to be the most attractive feature of the fair, the dozens of booksellers crammed into Mérida’s convention center.
During the event, three new poetry books on the topic of COVID-19 and the pandemic will be launched, including “Covidario veinte: 20 + 20 poemas desde la cuarentena” by Fer de la Cruz.
The FILEY will also host the first Caribbean journalism festival. It will feature speakers from across the region.
“The event was created for people from the Caribbean, and also those who just feel Caribbean but are not actually from the region,” said organizer Paul Antoine.
The 2020 FILEY book fair was first postponed until the end of the year but was eventually canceled.