Besancon. Books in the loop: time to take stock

a like assistance

The last two editions had been interrupted by the pandemic (the show was one of the few that remained in 2020). This year, Livres dans la Boucle has found its audience at the same time as its usual format. According to an initial assessment by Grand Besançon Métropole, the literary festival even broke records, i.e. 32,000 visitors in two and a half days (compared to almost 31,000 in 2018). Result: a packed tent and meetings that averaged a 70% occupancy rate. The Museum of Fine Arts, which hosted the festival and the Heritage Days at the same time, had not experienced such an influx since the peak of attendance when it reopened in 2018: this weekend more than 5,500 entries were registered.

F for party my love

She is delighted, Gaëlle Josse and says so. The novelist loved her visit to the Livres dans la Boucle festival and, in particular, the reception from the booksellers. The author is not the only one who has enjoyed her stay in the city of Franche-Comté: an author who no longer wants to do a living room is delighted. “Besançon readers have something special,” says Murielle Szac, author of Elephtheria. They have a real appetite for reading, a curiosity that goes beyond the “seen on TV” side that we can see elsewhere.” The only downside, perhaps, was Friday’s “authors'” night: the somewhat dissipated guests during the mayor’s speech would have been teased “like children.”

L as laureates

This year, the festival awarded a new prize “L’Homme Debout” to adolescent authors responsible for writing a text on the theme of Children’s Rights. Eight finalists declaimed their text this Sunday before the jury chaired by the novelist Valentine Goby. The two winners are Emma Demeusy and Oscar Durin-Kita.

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P as present!

Opening hours have been slightly extended this year. But the question remained: would the authors still be present on the last afternoon? Last year, readers found several stalls empty as early as 3 pm The organizers have obviously found the parade: there were more authors under the big top this Sunday.

R as remuneration

The Livres dans la Boucle festival, supported by the National Book Center (CNL), pays authors when they participate in meetings, conferences or shows. The remuneration scale applied is that of the CNL, which varies according to the type of intervention (round table, major interview or performance reading). In short, prices ranging from €170.86 (gross) to €455.64.

Z as zygomatic

The booksellers installed under the marquee smiled this Sunday. “It’s a success,” summarizes one of them. Special mention to Saturday, a “huge” day, according to a professional. “A Himalayan! added one of his colleagues. Result: record billing during this 7me edition according to Grand Besançon Métropole: 11,000 books sold in two and a half days (compared to almost 9,000 in 2019, before Covid).

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